Friday, October 5, 2007

China Day 14: A Lucky Day

I think day 13 felt unlucky – it must have been the rain. It has been raining here the last few days, and so that seems to make everything a little down. But – as I say – give it a day and it usually blows over. Today was a great day – great to be up and able to do our therapy! Great to go out shopping with some friends (always good for a woman's spirits!) It was just plain good to get out for a bit – I was starting to go stir-crazy here at the hospital. A new family arrived in town yesterday, and Marlene offered to take them over to Wal-mart to get a few things. So, even though I have been there before, I went along to pick up a few items. I am proud to say that the kitchen is stocked up and ready for the kids to come next week.... I had to smile at some of the items bought by the new family – some pillows, foam pads for the beds (did I tell you the beds are really hard here and the pillows even harder?!) So I got a kick out of it. Tomorrow will even be better because we are going to check out the Pearl Market. I am sure it will be an adventure. Now that I am familiar with the street vendors, I think I can take them on at the Pearl Market. Just drop the asking price by 70% and then start working up from there – that is the tip that I got today, so I am anxious to try it out tomorrow.

Probably the most 'UP' thing that happened was that Dan figured out how to get to our blog site using a proxy service. So we were able to go out and read some of the posts that others have been putting out there and it was really fun to read all the comments from our friends and family! Thanks so much for contributing-- it is fun to collaborate together on this great experience! We do so appreciate all of your support and it was nice to finally be able to read and catch up! Many, many thanks!

For those of you who may not be aware, the Chinese government blocks a lot of internet content, including blogs. When we first arrived in Beijing, the personnel from the hospital had to take our passports to the police station and register us so that we could access the internet. It is an interesting approach to things – but sometimes I wish the USA would filter some of the corrupt content that is out there.

The Special Olympics have started in Shanghai, and we actually found one English speaking channel on the TV- so now we know a little more of what is going on in the country!

Our favorite therapist, Lily, comes back from vacation tomorrow – I am anxious to meet with her again. Dan has been doing a lot of his OT on his own and we have questions about what is the most helpful 'outside of therapy' exercises to do for him. I am anxious to meet with her and further collaborate on 'the plan' I have worked up a schedule for all of us to follow – I sent it to the kids – but I will share it with you as well.

Schedule for Dan
Time Dan Schedule
6:30 AM Blood pressure / temperature
7:00 AM Breakfast
7:30 AM Get dressed
8:00 AM IV / Leg, arm, speech exercises
9:00 AM TCM - acupuncture
10:00 AM Occupational therapy
11:00 AM TCM - Chinese massage
12:00 PM IV / Lunch
1:00 PM Speech therapy
2:00 PM IV / Leg, arm, speech exercises
3:00 PM Physical therapy
4:00 PM
5:00 PM
6:00 PM
6:30 PM
7:00 PM
7:30 PM
8:00 PM Shower / IV
9:00 PM IV / Leg, arm, speech exercises
10:00 PM IV

Number Leg, arm speech exercises Type of exercise
20 Knee bend - face up leg
20 Knee bend - face down leg
20 Hip lift back
20 Raise arms - while laying down arm
20 Open close mouth speech
20 Pucker / smile speech

Exercise descriptions:
Here are some diagrams of the exercises to be done. These are independent of the OT, PT and Speech that he will be getting each day. The purpose is to work harder the muscle groups that do not work very well, they need more that what can be given during the regular therapy sessions.

Knee bend – face up
Have Dad lay down on the bed face up. You will need to hold on to his ankle while he raises his leg and bends his knee. This will help strengthen the muscle needed to stop the hypertension of his knee.

Knee bend – face down
Have Dad lay down on the bed, face down. Apply resistance to the ankle while he raised the foot and bends the knee.

Hip lift
While lying on his back, have Dad raise his hips off the bed.

Raise arms while laying down
While lying on his back, have Dad raise arms straight up and back behind his head. Try to get him to touch the headboard with his fingers. This can either be done independently or he can clasp his hands together. Clasping his hands helps him exercise the right arm, which can't do this very well on it's own.

Again – thanks for all your support – it is good to know we have so many people backing us!


Anonymous said...

I will NEVER forget how hard the beds were in China. Bret actually liked them but I would try to get extra pillows from the hotel maids and then line them all up under me to sleep. Give Dan our best. Glad to hear your kids get to visit.

Anonymous said...

Hi Dan Hope things are going well. I am not sure if this post will work but if it does we wish you all the best.


LaNae B. Maughan said...

Good idea on the pillow! I might have to try that one out! It's good to hear from you Wendy - Dan and I think the world of you and Bret. Hope all is well.