Last week I got to escape from the hospital for a few hours to attend my youngest daughter Bailey's continuation ceremony from fifth grade to sixth grade. I really had a wonderful time. I got to see Bailey with all her friends who have grown so close over the years and teachers who we have known since Jade attended Louisville Elementary some years ago.
I also was able to see some of our friends from the Louisville community who have offered my family so much support since the accident. I'm so glad that I chose this as my first major goal in getting back home because it was like an end of an era for many families in Louisville. We are not the only family in our circle of friends who watched their youngest finish up at Louisville Elementary. There's a whole group of kids who are the youngest sibling in their house just like Bailey and they are all friends. This whole experience made me really want to be back in Louisville with my family and friends again.
As I get closer to my discharge date from the hospital (June 17), I can't help but think how far I've come since the accident almost six weeks ago. I've had my good days and not so good days, but through it all the constant has been such amazing support from so many family and friends. I cannot say thank you enough to all the family and friends who have offered support. Just hearing that someone is thinking about me really helps. It's these simply things that really lift my spirits when I'm not having such a good day or when I'm feeling tired from the physical therapy. I was truly amazed that two friends from Los Angeles, Amelia and David, flew in on Thursday and Friday just to visit me. It was so great to see them and to have their positive spirits around me. This just raises the question again: how do you repay such tremendous support? I am just stunned by the compassion people have shown me through this experience.
Speaking of my discharge date, the closer I get to it, the higher my medical team raises the bar for me. This week I began doing the various physical therapy classes from 8am - 4pm every day. This is just exhausting. The good news is this hard work has allowed me to begin to sleep at night without a sleeping aid. I used to challenge myself with personal records from all of the cycling and running I did, now I'm challenged with everyday tasks like putting on shoes or getting out of bed in the morning. Before the accident, I always took for granted all the simple things in my daily life. Who ever thought that those easy tasks would ever be such a challenge?!
I'm also learning that I need to plan ahead for everything I do. Even for such simple tasks as getting out of bed in the morning. Before I get out of my wheelchair and take off the back brace in the evening, I need to pick out the clothes to wear the next day. This is so that I can reach them while I'm lying in bed before I put on the back brace. At least I do have more independence now. I can get up in the morning by myself, I can shower by myself, I even drove a car for the first time today. I'm beginning to feel like I am regaining my independence. The next big tasks are adjusting to life at home and getting back to work. But I still have a couple of weeks to prepare for these changes.