Tuesday night, I got a call from Mesa Verde, informing me that the doctor had prescribed nuedexta to treat Vernon’s recent mood swings. He hasn’t just been lashing out at me, it seems. There has to be some real problems going on for the doctor to prescribe something without my asking for it. Other complaints must have reached him. So they are trying this new medication out and decreasing the depakote, which no longer seems to be working (if it ever did.)
I also got a call on Monday from the case manager, letting me know that Vernon would be getting a half hour of restorative exercise with an RNA three times a week on Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday at 1:30pm. I didn’t want to miss the first day, partly because I wanted to see what they had in mind for him, but partly because I wanted to make sure it happened! So I made after-school arrangements for the kids and cancelled an appointment, only to get there and find out he’d already been taken to the gym in the morning before dialysis. I insisted he go in again while I was there, having made such an effort to be there at the planned time. Thankfully, they obliged.
Rudolfo, his RNA, is a saint. He is always patient, never making me feel like I’ve inconvenienced him in any way. He’s the one I’d seek out when I needed help transferring Vernon into the minivan. He talks to Vernon in a kind a even manner, even with Vernon shouting out like a child offended by pain. They both told me that the morning session hadn’t gone well. Vernon said it was painful. Rudolfo said it was short.
That’s why I wanted to be there. I knew if I could talk him down a little, it might go easier. If I couldn’t talk him down, I could at least cheerlead. It seemed to help, as Vernon got through the whole session this afternoon. There were 15 minutes of bending and stretching his left arm—well, trying to. “It’s locked! It doesn’t work!” Vernon pointed out. Then he was put on a two-piece “bicycle” in the gym, where he could rotate his arms and legs at the same time. Vernon was quick to announce that this wasn’t a real bike at all, but we told him that this was a starting place. If he ever wanted to get on a real bike again, he’d have to put up with this contraption for awhile. He didn’t seem convinced, but he managed to go the whole 15 minutes. He quickly gave up on using his right arm, but Rudy said he did much better in the afternoon than the morning.
I cannot regularly go to each of these sessions but I intend to be there for the first week, anyway. I don’t want them giving up on him too soon. It’s hard, when he’s so obstinate and difficult, but with coaxing and constant attention, I think we will see results. If nothing else, he should be more naturally tired by the end of the day. My hope is that in time, he will get used to the routine and look forward to these sessions. He’s not allowed to sleep or excuse himself some other way, as far as I’m concerned— it’s already taken too much of my effort and time just to get this. I want to make sure it gets kept up!