Friday, July 23, 2004

I'm Aliiive!!!

So, after over a week, I'm back to posting. Quick update on the doings of Kaffy:

Last week, work kicked my ass in a serious way. We're doing a Big Project and I'm responsible for a big chunk of it. It's getting done slowly but surely.

Saturday, I took off for Memphis (well, a tiny town about 60 miles east of Memphis, actually). My parents live there and I had planned this vacation about 2 months ago. Then, on June 17 (2 days after my dad's 67th birthday), my dad had a pretty severe stroke. Currently, he's in a nursing home undergoing physical and occupational therapy until he is strong enough to go into rehab (target date for that is mid- to late-August).

Physically, he's getting better and stronger. His left side was completely numb, but he's now regaining some feeling there. Everytime he says his left leg or arm hurts, we all get excited. Means he can feel it. The therapists have him standing and taking a couple of steps now. All with people holding on to him, of course, but he can do it. I'm pretty confident that he'll be able to walk again. He may need a tripod cane, but he'll do it. His left hand still isn't doing much more than twitching occasionally. "They" tell us that's normal and that his hand will be the last area to start working again. That's assuming it does.

The hardest part about all this is that "they" don't know much more than we do. Don't know if he'll get better or how much. There's just no way to know right now.

Mentally, he actually seems to be getting a bit worse. He is completely coherent and logical if you ask him questions. But occasionally, he hallucinates. Badly. For example, there's this redneck knife shopping show that he picks up on his satellite at home. He collects pocket knives, so he loves this show with an unholy love. The other morning, he was tearing his bed apart and when my mom asked him what he was looking for, he explained that he had lost his new knife. He had watched the knife show the night before (impossible, he can't get that show at the nursing home) and had ordered a new knife. They had brought it to him via helicopter and dropped it off that morning and he had misplaced it. Now, you know that didn't happen, and my mom explained that to him. But, all day long, he kept looking for that new knife.

He still has a sense of humor, but it seems like emotions don't quite register. He laughs and smiles (kind of lopsided cuz his left side is numb), but it doesn't reach his eyes. It's disturbing.

His mental state is really worrying my mom. If he doesn't get better (and, again, he may or he may not--we just don't know), he won't be able to left alone. Who knows what he would end up doing.

I'm really worried about my mom. She's running herself ragged getting to the nursing home around 8 each morning and staying until my dad finishes his supper around 5:30. She's worried about him. She misses her husband. And, she wonders if she'll get him back at least close to what he was before.

I drove back yesterday with my younger sister. She's going to stay until Sunday then fly back home. It'll be nice having her here. I need a vacation from my un-vacation.


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