Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Rehab progress 17

I am obviously not ever going to find a magic spell that will relieve me of this current problem. But I am making some progress toward regaining physical function. So says Ben Robinson, the physical therapist I am going to.

Today in an hour-long workout I pedalled the exercise bike 2.5 miles and walked the treadmill at 3 mph for 20 minutes. By the time I finished the circuit of exercise machines I was totally out of energy.

I bemoan the passing of the time when I would have laughed at such trivial exercise. But apparently the gains I make will continue to be minuscule and painstaking. This is the way with normal exercise, but I was expecting to regain strength more easily, because I was in better shape beforehand. Apparently brain damage doesn't work that way, and I needed to start all over again from where I was after the stroke damage. I didn't know that, and nobody really took the time to explain it to me. Perhaps others who have to go through something similar can be forewarned.

Anyway, I continue to believe that some progress is better than nothing -- notwithstanding my impatience. I am still better off than the man with no legs...


Jim Cobabe said...

Not that I am without complaints.

Imagine trying to drink from a can of soda. I can pick up the can in my right hand -- just barely. It feels precarious to bring the drink up to my mouth. I am reminded every time that my grip is insecure, and might fail any time.

It is discouraging to encounter obstacles to such simple tasks, things I used to accomplish without even thinking before.

pgk said...

You are better off than some men without legs but some men without legs do quite well for themselves, having put in the rehab time, surpassed their own expectations, and moved into the deeper territory of what's possible.

There is magic at work here, but not the abracadabra, presto-change-o sort. It's the slower work, the native work of restoration. I don't think you understand just how well you are doing.

Be discouraged, if that's important to you. I, for one, am happy for you.

Jim Cobabe said...


Thanks for your ever kind and understanding response.

I do not think you could know how truly helpful it is, at times.

One of the most obvious lessons I have learned in the past few months is just how much I depend on help from others. Although it is difficult for me to admit, I do need lots of help. I have not been able to see and understand that nearly as well, before now/

BTW, I have quite a bit of herbicide on hand that you are welcome to, if you can use it.

Thanks again.

pgk said...

I can use the herbicide; I'd be grateful for it. I just have to work out whether I can get it from you (far, far away as you are), whether we can put off spraying till spring or not (which will give me more time to figure out what to do), or what other options I might have.

I hate figuring out stuff like this. Give me a mystery of the universe anytime.

Jim Cobabe said...


You are welcome to it -- and it would be just as useful in spring as in the fall, perhaps more so.

I am trying to work out whether I will be visiting closer to your nieghborhood, but I don't have any plans that would make it a convenience. Whatever you can figure out would be just fine. Let me know if you are in the area -- we can meet somewhere for the handoff. I'd be happy to meet you, in any case.

pgk said...

We'll see what we can work out, Jim. I might be coming up in November or early December for the AML (Association for Mormon Letters) writers' conference or else in the spring for their annual conference. One or the other.

I'll be sure to let you know in case we can meet up somewhere.