Hello everyone. It has been a busy month. The day program at the Shepherd center was amazing! All of my therapists were so helpful and caring. They helped me work on things to improve my independence. I also got to participate in some incredible activities. During my first week in the day program I got to swim with the whale sharks at the Georgia aquarium. It was interesting putting on a wetsuit, but it was great to get into salt water again. Plus the 25 foot fish swimming around and bumping into me was epic. The second week in day program I got to ride a hand cycle in piedmont park. This was a great experience because it was fun, but it also helped to get my tricep muscles back.
Unfortunately I had to leave the day program because I have limitations with my right wrist and elbow. Thankfully I'm seeing an upper extremity specialist in order to figure out the problem. Once the elbow and wrist are better I can return to day program for more therapy.
Meanwhile I'll be undergoing outpatient occupational therapy. I will also continue to swim and work out weekly.
As for school, I'm setting up an internship with shepherd spinal cord research department to finish my college credits, and graduate.
Everyday presents new challenges and obstacles, but support from all my friends and family make it much easier.
A Mom's Perspective
Since Sean's accident we have been operating on auto pilot. Only now is the reality of what's happened really sinking in with us. It is extremely difficult to watch your beloved son face a daunting surgery and recovery. Indeed the odds of him surviving were not good. That he did survive does not surprise me. He's always been very strong.
He did his absolute best during inpatient therapy even with a huge neck brace and tracheotomy site that was healing. We practically lived at the hospital those 9 weeks. As parents we had lots to learn about Spinal Cord Injury and how to help Sean. Sean's level of injury is considered C-6 Quadriplegia. What that means is that Sean has some upper body function but no sensation or movement below his chest. You can read more about SCI here:
After being home for 6 weeks he started 3 weeks of full time therapy back at The Shepherd Center where he was an inpatient. We lived in the adjacent apartments. The Day Program is very intensive. Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Recreational Therapy, Psychologist appts, outings, classes, and many other activities. They uncovered an issue with Sean's elbow and wrist that is limiting his already limited upper body. After an MRI and CT Scan last week we will find out next week whether Sean has to have another surgery or a special splint. After that's corrected he will go back to the Day Program for another session!
We get out every day. We live where we can be very mobile. Sean is using a power wheelchair so we take the bus, train, walk or use a service that has a lift on their shuttle. We've been to concerts, parks, fishing, movies, museums, gardens.
We never imagined that something like this could happen. It's life-changing. It has been hard for our entire family but we are adjusting. Tony has been the absolute best partner! My love for him has grown by leaps and bounds. There is nothing better than being with someone who adores your children. I can't write this without talking about Sean's attitude. Of course, this has been devastating for him but he has coped amazingly well. He has learned about his condition and is determined to be at his best. Nothing has changed about that, just how he goes about getting there. When I said life-changing, I do not mean life-ending. He has big plans and dreams! So do we!
We are extremely grateful for our friends and all their support.
With all my love and healing thoughts,