I had hoped to do some drawing and writing while I was in the nursing home, to reclaim a part of myself that I have neglected for a long time. What else did I have to do? What I found instead is that my brain simply did not function like I had assumed it would. I was focused on my recovery. Any time I had not dealing with ordinary activities of daily living was either spent working on reclaiming my legs, at least their range of motion, or struggling to suppress the plague of “what if’s” that stirred in my brain. My daughter-in-law reminded me that my recovery was not a vacation and she was not surprised that I couldn’t do any artwork….normal life is required for that, at least for some of us.
I keep a daily journal more or less and rereading it I find good and bad experiences, if not in equal measure, close to it. I met some wonderful people and some not so wonderful people. This nursing home was probably not that different from any other nursing home. Maybe I will write some stories out of some of my experiences, some are good stories, but anyone who has been in a nursing home or has had a loved one in a nursing home can tell stories and some of them will be much like mine.
I cannot say enough about physical therapy’s benefits. The therapists who worked with me helped keep me saner than I would have been otherwise and kept my spirit from sinking too far down. A long chat with the chaplain was also helpful to me.
Early in July, beginning my second month in the nursing home a dear friend died. She had been in a medically induced coma while her doctors tried to diagnosis what was going on with her and when, what they feared most was confirmed, she was allowed to die. My brother and his wife attended her funeral in West Virginia. I still find it hard to believe that she is gone. Her death and our inability to see her before she died is one of the painful regrets of my confinement.
Many friends visited me. One friend from work brought me some vegan treats which were wonderful and another friend brought me vegetarian meals about once a week or so. I am still amazed that the home couldn’t figure out what to feed me. Given budget issues I would think beans and rice would be at the top of their lists of proteins, but not so.
My boss brought me a loner computer with access to the internet. Hurray. Since I am rambling here, I will stop for now.