Yesterday, I stopped by Vernon’s potential new home in Santa Ana for a brief tour.
I was pleased to find that even though it is only 15 minutes closer than before, I could feel the difference. All this driving, though not entirely unpleasant (I’ve got my audio-books to keep me company and I plan to avoid the worst traffic times) still carries a subtle kind of stress. I remember when we moved back to California from the UK two years ago, I realized my greatest reverse-culture-shock came from having to drive so much again. Everyone was literally going at least 60 miles an hour, all day long! I came up with this theory: even if we try to keep our minds relatively quiet and focused, we are still moving faster than is natural to our bodies…and since we are required to, living here, we think nothing of it! But I think it takes its toll somehow. Don’t get me wrong: I love transportation, and I admit I’ve left a huge carbon footprint when it comes to travel, but I think that a habit of too much driving does effect our stress levels and psyche eventually. That said, Maki told me the other day…he doesn’t mind long driving trips. Well, he only has three more years till he can take the wheel. Wait…what? Yikes! 🙂
Ah, but enough about me and my opinions. Let’s get back to the recovery home I visited. It seemed very nice and bright, and I was immediately encouraged to see so many residents/patients rolling themselves around in wheelchairs. There was a movie room with a group of people gathering already (at 10 am), and I had noticed a team of therapy-dogs and their owners congregating outside. My guide also told me that though there would be both individual and group therapy available to Vernon, his insurance would only cover an hour with each therapist a day. I think that meant: PT, OT, and Speech. I mentioned the problem with Vernon’s eyes that seems to have not gone away with time—they aren’t pointing in the same direction yet. I was told there was no vision therapist at this facility, but that perhaps the speech therapist would work with that issue. Again, we don’t really get to choose our options. As a friend pointed out to me earlier this week, the options choose us.
I admit I am concerned as I think Vernon needs as much stimulation as possible. Perhaps this is where I need to recruit the visitors and helpers that came in the early days of his coma. Remember all that music therapy we gave him when he was asleep? Well, my feeling is that this place will be where he will need his troops once again. We don’t know exactly when he will be moved, but I know insurance wants it to be soon, hopefully this week.
Our social worker at Kindred has suggested I take pointers from the physical and occupational therapists while we are still there…so that I can help him move forward however I can. After all, the next placement from here is…
Of course it is what I want, but to me it seems he has a lot of recovery to do before he is ready for my home care. I love him, but I’m no nurse.
So…time to up our game. Whatever that means. Let’s pour it in.
Vernon taking his bike-riding very seriously today. Did you know he used to be an avid cyclist? Because of that, he does seem to enjoy this exercise.
Ah, there is a smile. See he DOES enjoy it!