Eating #TSJ

Our steak fajita dinner went well with Janet eating two fajitas in a surprisingly neat fashion. She didn’t hurry through the meal at all and with the exception of trying to dip her tater tot into the bowl of shredded cheese she displayed some very nice table etiquette. Overall she seemed very bright and with it tonight, asking really good questions, helping to get ready for dinner and to clean up as well as keeping our annoying dog entertained and out of my way. Janet chose ice cream for dessert and when I asked her why she keeps choosing pralines and cream all the time she said ” I like the flavor and it tastes good and I like the name”. Solid answer.

There really wasn’t much time for anything other than dinner so once it was cleaned up we made our way back to Connect. Connie was there and congratulated Janet on the success of her swallow X- ray. She wanted to explain to Janet what had happened and what it all means but Janet kinda wasn’t tuned in as she had heard it all from me already and it was approaching nine o’clock which is past her usual bedtime. Once tucked in I could tell she was very much ready for sleep so I said goodnight with the promise of seeing her in the morning with Laurel. That brought a smile to her face as she closed her eyes.

Today was a milestone day for sure. We are grateful to Connie for pushing things along so well at KGH. The next target is the peg tube and I’ve set a goal of two weeks to get rid of that thing. Praying that Janet has a restful night that brings a day of learning, recovery and fun.

Swallowing #TSJ

Janet and I are home for the evening and I’m sure a lot of you are interested to hear the results of her swallow X-ray so here is an update on the day so far.

Lorne took Janet to the gym after breakfast and got her on the Shuttle after some stretching. He reports that she did very well, doing thirty reps with one band and sixteen with two. She only had one melt down during the entire session and it was minor. When I arrived at 11:30 Janet was finishing making her bed and “looking for some after school type work to do”. Since we had to go soon I got her what I hoped would be her last mushy meal for lunch and she ate that quickly while we had a brief chat with Tez. I asked him about Janet being home on weekends and missing a day in the gym. He feels the different therapy experienced being away from Connect is just as valuable as being in the gym and having the weekend off would not be detrimental to her treatment. In light of that Janet will be home Friday and Saturday nights from now on. As to my concern about Janet’s leg work being done in the mornings we agreed to leave it up to the staff as to which workout they could do best with the time available. Tez feels there is no measurable difference between working the legs in the morning as opposed to the afternoon.

We raced off to KGH and despite the expected parking challenges arrived on time for Janet’s swallow X-Ray. She was in and out in twenty minutes with the Speech Pathologist (not Connie) seeming to make a real effort at qualifying Janet for as unrestricted a diet as possible. After the test she couldn’t tell me anything specific as she wanted to review the video recording and as it turns out Connie would review it as well. Janet and I visited the old gang at Rehab which brought out lots of big smiles from Janet and everyone who saw her including Moira, Cathryn, Dr. Miller, lots familiar nurses and especially our long time table mate Barb who is now walking with a cane! The visit there was very good therapy for Janet as she was reminded of how many people love and care for her.

As soon as we got home Connie called with her results from the swallow X-ray. Janet’s diet has officially been elevated to “Easy Chew, Thin Liquids”. Translated that means pretty much anything Janet wants to eat with the exception of tough meats or hard vegetables and fruit. Raw carrots was mentioned as a no no but when I told Connie how much Janet loves baby carrots she agreed to allow those and anything similar including sliced apples. The main precaution with Janet’s eating now is to ensure someone is always with her and to monitor the pace with which she eats. There is still a little bit of residue in Janet’s throat when she swallows but it’s not nearly what it was during the last X-ray and clears with a second swallow. One thing she failed at was using a straw but that’s no big deal. Connie will go to Connect tonight and give them the written instructions so that Janet can start eating real food there tomorrow. For her first authorized meal she has chosen steak fajitas which we are going to start making now.

Praising God for all the good people in our life and for the success of today so far.