Thursday, April 3, 2014

The Comeback Kid

When I was first wheeled into Western Michigan University's OT clinic in the spring of 2012, I was completely unaware of what was going on around me, I was a shell of my former self, scared to death of this new life thast had been flung at me and completely lacking confidence in my ability to do anything.
Today, I walked out of my session with a spring in my step, head up and proud, happy, tired and confident.

Thanks to the efforts of  five young student OTs, I have gradually regained my life back, these past few months have brought about tremendous changes in me, physically, mentally and spiritually. I find, these days, I have more self-confidence than I had pre-stroke, even though I pretended otherwise, as we all do.

Today, my Ot, Stef(who is Amaze-balls as a good friend of mine would put it) and I did some challenging things, successfully.

W (I) play Wok and Roll. a kids game, that involves small colored beads, colored bowls an ::gasp!:: tweezers!

Th idea is to pick up the colored beads with the tweezers and put the beads into the corresponding colored bowl. Well, Stef has me hold the tweezers in my LEFT hand, yes, you heard it right, we are challenging Larry to grasp and pinch. I finished this task today in about half the time it took me the first time I attempted it, what I have found about activities such as this lately is that they do not frustrate or terrify my as much as they would have a few months ago, my focus has become so laser-like when I am doing something hard, I can now get through it without too much difficulty or frustration. I also decided a few months ago, to never allow Charlotte to witness me give up on anything or to get frustrated, and this informs my behavior lately when I'm faced with something fearsome or hard, because, really, I'm noticing I can do anything as long as I try it and stay calm.

One of my goals for OT this semester has been to recreate this picture:
Stef and I have been working on gutting that arm out and up to do this, we play ,Zoom Ball, which really challenges my shoulder, but, today, as Stef and I were zipping that ball back and forth and I was exerting almost no effort in getting my shoulder to participate. I almost burst out in tears.

All I could think abnout was that poor, broken down, hopeless woman who rolled into that therapy room all of those months ago, she wouldn' have believed for a second that any of this was possible, or that she could be at peace with her life and herself as much as I am now.

Watch out, world, Lizz and Larry are making a comeback!

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