Monday, July 18, 2011

Let's Do This

I was looking forward to my first day back in rehab because I wanted to see what they thought of my progress. I was on my own practicing for 2 weeks and I was beginning to doubt if I was doing an adequate job at home. First visit with new therapists is always an evaluation. They need to assess where you're at so by the next visit they can hand pick the instruments of torture most suitable for your particular disability. Humans are naive and gullible by nature so we quickly forget there is an agenda and think "hey this is pretty easy! It doesn't really hurt so bad." Duh, stupid. This is the eval. They're assuming I can't do squat just to humor me for their little tests. A series of tests I began zipping through. The therapist said he was surprised to see how well I was doing. He hadn't planned on testing coordination since he thought I wouldn't be ready. While he went to grab the coordination activities, I took a moment to pat myself on the back for being so awesome.  He came back with a big wooden block with 12 holes in it. I had to put 12 little wooden pegs into the holes one at a time. It was challenging, but I managed to do it in 44 seconds. (I told you. I'm awesome.) So that was it. I showed them I could transfer (get from wheelchair to bed), hobble with a walker, and stick pegs in holes. Piece of cake.

Today was my 2nd visit with OT. As he wheeled me down the hall, we approached the room where I had displayed my awesomeness, only this time we kept going. Wait! Where are you taking me?! Ah shit! Folks, this is when reality hits. Last week was an eval. Today he had chosen his weapons wisely: a yard stick, a beach ball, and most gruesome of all, my own body weight. Oh the humanity! I lied on my back and raised the beach ball up and over my head and endured the horrific, sharp, spastic pain that ensued. 45min of various movements and stretches and tears. When you can't feel much in your joints and suddenly feel popping and stabbing, it's scary. The brain wants you to stop. The sadist wants you to keep going.

I was surprised that by the time we were done, my shoulder felt great! No really, it did. All the work I've been doing at home has been great for forward range of motion and hand movement, but my poor shoulder has been neglected. The pain will always be bad if you don't attempt to work through it. Pain makes us shy away from that which can help us. While it's far more easily said than done, it needs to be done. So do it.

1 comment:

  1. Way to power through the pain! Your hard work sets a great example and is very inspiring!

    -Ted Callahan