*****UPDATE: MONDAY MORNING - Mom's personality is completely restored! She's out of hiding. She's herself again. Conversation is normal, animated, energetic. Her general stamina is returning - s l o w l y. But, her back pain remains and she's still lying flat most of the time. Those who read my little writings know that I believe in the power of sincere words and ideas. A 'from-the-heart' pep talk gave Mom the courage to do her occupational therapy yesterday. She'd been refusing. The longest she's been upright in a chair since May 1st has been half an hour - with much groaning and moaning from the pain. Yesterday, with a buoyed spirit, breathing through the pain, exerting herself even though it hurt she was up, doing therapy for SIXTY MINUTES!! She tried. Hard. And when it was all over, she knew she'd earned her rest. Normally the exertion of getting up at all exhausted her, pained her, for the rest of the day. Yesterday I asked her five minutes after she returned to bed, "How do you feel, Mom?"
Her answer, a cheery, "I feel pretty good!"
Jaw dropping moment.
And she felt good the rest of the day even with many visitors, therapy, and a shower (which normally counts as therapy to her, so painful and tiring is it - so it's like she had two sessions yesterday). She even asked when lunch would arrive - a first!
Those of you who pray and think kind thoughts, thanks so much. Our hope and goal for this week is five days in a row of therapy which means more helpful pep talks and more biting the bullet for Mom. She can do it. Her will is on the fence and could go either way. It's the deciding factor.
What a weekend it's been! I never know when I go down to see Mom and Dad what I'll find. When I first got there on Sunday Mom said she wanted to go home, she didn't need therapy, she would get her strength back eventually. All she needed was to follow that line of thinking to its logical conclusion to realize that she had to go over 'Pain Mountain' to get to the other side, where her normal, happy life awaited. Words made a difference because she was receptive to them. From a low, discouraged vantage point we went to a remarkable high point - in the space of TWO HOURS.
I'll say it again: Never underestimate the power of love and words. And a strong-willed Mom!
***END OF UPDATE FOR MONDAY***
Tomorrow I'll go down to help my parents.
Today, though, ah, it's starting out beautifully, the experience of it inspiring this. It made me feel good to write it; maybe it'll make you feel good to read it.