Not Yet

I've been going to physical therapy three times a week for the past couple of weeks… and on into the future indefinately. From the beginning, I told my therapist that I had a couple of goals I wanted to meet. I wanted to be able to put on my own coat. Dressing can be frustrating and tiring and having to ask people (sometimes strangers) to help you put on your coat seems rather a simple task until you can't do it without contorting and making faces drawn from pain. It can be embarrassing to ask for help, too.

My other goal was to be able to drive. The neurologist left it up to the physical therapy people to determine when I was capable.

Wednesday my therapist got my hopes up. He had me sit down and handed me a flat piece of wood cut into a circle shape – the size of a steering wheel. He had me look to the right as far as I could. To the left as far as I could. Turn the "wheel" as far each way as possible. I thought I did okay… until he smiled and said, "Ummm… not yet."

What?

Not that I have lots of places to go or things to do. In all honesty, my biggest 'have to do' right now is just getting to therapy! Work this time of year is very slow (thank goodness) and I've been logging into work from home, occasionally doing an hour here or there, but nothing that I've needed to go in for. However, we live in the country and it isn't as though I can just walk to the store or to the library or to run any other errands I may have. I'm grounded. My mother-in-law has been taking me to therapy. She loves to get out of her house and goes to town most every day if for nothing else, to get a newspaper. So I seem to work into her schedule okay. I try to schedule my appointments around her. My daughter has been good about either picking up things at the grocery store for me or picking me up and taking me to get groceries and running miscellaneous other errands. Still, I hate not being able to just go out and jump in the car and go when I feel I need to. I'm having a greater appreciation for people who are elderly and can drive no longer or for one reason or another are shut-ins and unable to come and go freely.

At least i know I will be able to drive again… eventually… just, "not yet". 

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Sue

Middle-aged. Anti-social. Mom. Grandma. Town-raised farmer's wife. Iowan. Want more? Come read the blogs.

17 thoughts on “Not Yet”

  1. but still, that’s progress. 🙂 i’m sure it isn’t easy relying on others when you are so independent but it allows people who care about you to feel useful. that’s nice for them!

  2. Whenever we are down to one vehicle, I feel SO isolated–and I live in the middle of town! (Albeit, we live in a strictly residential area, but still in town.) So, I know what you are feeling when it comes to being grounded. It will all pass soon enough, right? Just getting there is hard! 🙂

  3. Just, please for your own sake, listen to your therapist!
    I have found in the past that sheer willpower is not nearly as good as following the therapist’s game plan.

  4. Sue! Oh, how i’ve missed you!! sorry i have not dropped by lately. i am going to be better about this!!

    anyways, sending you hugs and lots o’love for continued recovery!

    Have a great weekend, my dear! 🙂

  5. Hang in there – the therapist may see something you don’t – maybe in a week you’ll be there – keep doing your daily exercises and stretches – you’ll get there!!!

  6. A year and a half ago I had my sholder operated on to remove bone spurs. I had my arm strapped to my chest. It presents all sorts of challenges.

    How do you tie your shoes? Cut your steak? Drive a stick shift?

    I told the doc that when I came in for the post-op check-up two weeks after surgery, I was BY-GOD going to drive my 1977 Datsun 280Z with a stick shift. He advised me that that might not be the best course of action.

    The devine Mrs A. will tell you that the surest way to get me to do something is to advise me not to do something because I might not be able.

    Needless to say, I drove the Z to the Dr’s appointment.

    And of course I regretted it.

  7. Sue, I know how hard this must be for you, and how frustrating it is to have to have others help you with the simplest things, but take care and try not to get ahead of the healing process.

    A few years ago, I was at a skating rink, and one of the wheels on my skate hit a worn place in the carpet, throwing me forward, landing with my full weight on my hand, which was folded backwards underneath my body. Needless to say, my wrist was crushed, and one of the bones in my arm was broken, requiring surgery, and pins to hold everything together, and of course, a cast from the elbow down.

    We lived in hot, humid Florida, and I remember that it was the most frustrating thing in the world, trying to get dressed, and having my husband pulling up my panytyhose, trying to get me dressed for church. I would be in tears, and he probably felt like crying, too! LOL

    Once, in a restroom at a restaurant, I had to ask a perfect stranger to help me get my pants up…how humiliating that was!

    I was supposed to wear the cast for six weeks, but due to complications, I ended up wearing that thing from November to February…I was nearly a nut case before it was over!

    We can laugh about it now, but it wasn’t so funny while it was happening.

    I know this is long, and maybe I should have put it in an email, but I said all of that to say that as hard as things seem now, it will get better, and you will probably find something to laugh at when it is all over. 🙂

  8. My wife dislocated her patella (kneecap) early january (I blogged about it and put up a great xray picture 🙂 and she hasn’t been able to drive since. It’s driving her nuts. She’s close tho.

    Her biggest “miss” is walking her dog Zina. Zina’s gained a few pounds because she won’t go for walks with anyone else. She is *her* dog.

  9. Awww Sue {Hug} I’m so sorry this healing is taking a bit to work itself out. Just hang in there. You’re doing great if effort is any indication!!
    I’m just glad you don’t have to be driving or out very much in the frigid weather. You don’t need that to worry about too!

    I’m keeping you in my thoughts.

  10. I’m with Sizzle & Michael! Watching Dad heal and do physical therapy from his breaking his leg has shown me that progress is progress no matter how small it might seem. When you put all of the little steps together, you’ll be amazed at where you are in another ____ days, weeks, months. Hang in there! Your family loves you and to help you (esp. for all you’ve done for them!) Re: asking strangers to help you with your coat…. you may never know how much it might mean to some of them that you asked and that they were able to help you…..

    Keep working and being patient. What is the view from your window?

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