Thursday, June 30, 2011

My Little Darlin, PT day 38 by David

Day #2 at Shepherd.  Ranchos Los Amigos Level IV.  I am told she will move out of this level but not surprisingly can not predict when.  She was kept very busy this morning.  They bathed and dressed her around 4 in the morning.  She was dressed but still in bed when I got here around 7.  She was calm, this was different in a good way from the somewhat agitated state she has been in.  Things move like clockwork around here.  At 7:30 she had her back brace put on and was gotten out of bed and placed in her fitted wheel chair.  I helped.  Shortly after the orthopedist consultant came by.  He gave the okay for weight bearing on her legs and says the neck and back braces can come off this weekend/early next week (6 weeks).  8:30 was breakfast with the speech therapists.   Jan did not care for the eggs or waffles.  She is clearly confused as she usually loves waffles.  She did well with the ham.  When the speech pathologists realized that Jan was not immediately balking at the ham they gave her a goal of five bites which with coaxing she accomplished.  It is like trying to get a 2 year old to focus.  The occupational therapists had her from 9 till 10.  They tried to get Jan to do simple things like comb her hair without much success.  They did put her in a special chair that stood her with support for several minutes.  This was tolerated fairly well.  She did get hypotensive but try lying on your back for more than 5 weeks and it will happen to us all.  This was followed with evaluation by the neuropsychologist and after that more by the speech pathologist until 11.  They gave her some more stimulation one of which was to separate playing cards into red or black piles.  When she finally focused on the task she zipped right through.  She very boisterously voiced her displeasure at what was being asked of her all morning.  She was allowed to sleep until 12.   This afternoon I sat with her trying to get her to eat real food.  We spent about one and onehalf hours on this while in the main therapy room with her in a wheel chair.  Everything I could get her to put in her mouth caused her to make a very bad face saying how bad it tastes with a few expletives.  I would continue to coax her and eventually got her to eat all of her fruit.  It was actually a very good time and started when she spontaneously said "it is only wafer thin" and smiled.  For those of you that are Monte Python fans you will understand the humor in this.  This kind of clear and humorous banter went on for a good 30 minutes with different things she and I like to pick on each other about.  She even laughed about her being dain bramaged, a line that we got from an old comedians skit.  After this she spent an hour standing with help.  She DID NOT LIKE THIS and very expressly let everyone in the room know it.  We just put her back in the bed a short time ago where she promptly fell asleep.

This next part is extremely important for everyone who is a registered voter in Mississippi and cares about what happened to Jan to read and act on.  As i previously wrote the amendment to the three foot law is going to be introduced by  Representative Margaret Ellis-Rogers.  In order for this to have a chance at making it through we ALL must call, send an email or letter to our Senator and Representative urging them to support, coauthor or if anyone knows a State Senator that would author the amendment to the senate then please ask them to do so.   This would get it introduced in both the house and senate.   The note should not be a form letter.   It does not have to be fancy.  The note should include your name and address so that they know you are in their district and your phone number.  You should also ask for them to give you a response to the effect of" I look forward to hearing back from you on this request".  This lets them know it is something important to you and you are willing to talk about it.   !!!!!!!!!!PLEASE DO THIS !!!!!!!!!

If anyone that has better computer skills than I have (and that is likely everyone) can find a link to make it easy for anyone to find not only who their State Senator and Representative is but also their contact info, please post it.

Thank you all for your concern,  I saw my Little Darlin laugh today (TIGT)





  1. Monty Python humor is a good thing! I know this is not easy, and will not be easy for a long time, so it is very good to hear you and Jan can laugh. We keep you both in our thoughts.

    I will be writing to my legislators, oh yes.

  2. Hello, I am a writer and editor for a national online publication called Grist. I write frequently about bicycle issues. I also happen to have family in Mississippi. I would be interested in interviewing you about your efforts to get the 3-foot law passed, and about Jan's recovery. Could you contact me at sgoodyear [at] grist [dot] org?

  3. I just wanted to let you know, not only am I addressing issues in the column I write, but I'm trying to do what I can with regard to cycling legislation. Even before learning about Jan, I'd contacted my state and federal politicians. One finally came through. On July 16th, I'll be meeting with Ed Perlmutter to discuss legislation on cyclist safety. I have a lot of ideas that could easily be implemented, including campaigns to address negative attitudes toward cyclists, additional measures to improve safety of cyclists and to ensure that those who violate our rights are prosecuted fairly (such as your amendment to the 3 foot law), more citations for those of us who DO violate laws, and traffic schools for cyclists, where those who are cited would receive education on how the laws apply to them and cyclist safety.

    I think Colorado is probably a great place to really push for more focus, as we DO have such a large cycling population, not to mention the fact that the USA PRo Cycling challenge will be here in August. It's my hope that not only can we improve legislation here in this state, but that we can push for some national legislation as well, which will help cyclists in all states.

    We also have the one town that has banned cycling (Black Hawk)- with ZERO basis for the ban. There had been NO history of incidents leading up to it. IMO, such things don't help things. They make them worse, because it basically tells people that we DON'T belong out there. REALLY bad idea.

    As to Jan, perhaps some more enjoyable stimuli may help some? Bring in some of her favorite music, movies (Monty Python?), books. Engage those damaged neural connections.

    Here's this week's column again, and I hope you don't mind that I did write about Jan in it. I know there's been a lot of progress that isn't current in it- I submitted it to my editor before Jan was starting to speak yet.

    I don't know what you're going through, but I was the victim of a hit & run in March. I'm still dealing with the injuries, in spite of being back on a bike, and still may need spinal surgery (neck). I'm also dealing with the medical debt. The driver was never apprehended, although witnesses made it clear that she was entirely at fault.

    Hang in there. Progress will be slow, but it IS progress nonetheless.


  4. State senators list:

  5. Wanted to get you my email address: