Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Progress Report

Dear Jan,

Here are some more thoughts about your progress.

Most people who care for you wants to know how you area doing (meaning: how are you moving in an imaginary scale from worse to better or vice versa). Nothing is wrong with this. We are inquisitive by nature. That's the way we were wired. We want to know how you are doing in clear, unequivocal terms. Somehow, all of us have become empiricists and are stuck with measuring all aspects of life.

So, here are some indicators of your state:

1. Four months ago, when you were still at Sunnybrook, you couldn't walk more than 50 meters with help. Your speech was limited to a few words and there was no movement in your right hand. You could not read or write more than a couple of words and were taking a cocktail of at least 5 medications.

2. Almost two months ago, when you left the rehab hospital, you were able to walk 500 meters without help, your speech included a few hundred words, your righ side, in particular your right hand and shoulder were moving considerably more, you were able to read short paragraphs and had trained your left hand to write two or three sentences, your medications were down to 2, one of which was multivitamins.

3. Last week we went to High Park for a walk of a bit more than 1 Km. down and uphill without help, your speech is ample and you get stuck with words only when excited. LAst week you participated at church by sharing your views on a passage for a couple of minutes. During visits with your friends, your speech flows nicely. Your right hand is moving a lot, three days ago I saw you putting it on the piano and playing a few chords. Yesterday, you were reading a novel and told me that you had been able to read 8 pages in 1 hour. You write and sign your own cheques and wrote a letter to your sister. The doctors agreed in stopping all medication in the next couple of weeks.

Those who see you one in a while can see the changes more dramatically than those who see you often. But there is no question that you are making progress. The tempting question is how far will these changes go? We have heard from the medical staff that you will go as far as your determination goes. I add to this that you can go further with the help from your community of support. However, I acknowledge that the final decision is in God's hands. On this topic Linda Ruth provided invaluable insight in the comments to the last blog; it is just a matter of faith and trust. So, no matter how much or how little your progress will continue, we all have to do what you have done so valiantly, to accept your situation now with grace and faith and really trust in The Lord.


1 comment:

Ret said...

Chords on the piano! That's a good start! I am praying that you'll be making music again real soon! :)