dress

Janet, A Success Story. April 21. #TSJ

Back to “work/school” for Janet today. She calls Connect by both names depending on her mood. Negative is work, positive is school. When I called at lunchtime today she was very positive and sounded confident. Her gym session was “OK” as opposed to the more frequent “terrible” and her voice just had a real nice tone to it that wasn’t diminished when I got to Connect later in the day. Janet excitedly told me she did some walking and it was “fine” but the nap thing didn’t work at all. She was pretty alert so we got on with the most important activity of the day. Her new Mother of the Bride dress arrived and she couldn’t wait to try it on. It took me a while to figure out how to get all the material over her head but we managed without much stress and here is the result.

Saying Yes to the Dress.

Saying Yes to the Dress.

To make sure all was well with the dress I asked Chelsea for her opinion and she raved about it. Later we showed Tiffany who also thought Janet looked great in it. Janet agrees but still needs reassurance from her peers (other women) before completely accepting any compliments.

Janet’s mood shifted a little downward after dinner as she realized she had some work to do. There was a bright moment before that though as she was able to have a nice Skype chat with Andrew. Janet excitedly reported on her SheLife speech and carried a good conversation. I think that chat improved her mood enough to where she actually enjoyed her bike ride. She sang a lot during it and didn’t complain once about the hard parts. Janet wasn’t up for any walking tonight so we did some Speech type work by filling out some customer feedback forms that Connect has going around. It was an opportunity for Janet to think about a few staff members and how they differ in their job strengths and to create comments on each of them as to how she feels they work for her. Good brain exercise.

To close out the night we got Janet onto the Tilt Table again and she was not pleased about it. Chelsea and I didn’t have her set up exactly like she was the first time and I think it was too late for Janet to get comfortable after we corrected her position. It was still a good stretch and weight bearing time.

As Janet got into bed tonight she ended up laying on her back with her right arm stretched out at her side. I’ve never seen that before and am not sure how she got it there but it is cool that she can do that with no pain.
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Praying for a productive Tuesday.

Janet, A Success Story. April 12. #TSJ

Shopping day was finally here. Janet remained lukewarm this morning to the idea of shopping for a dress to wear to Heather and Allan’s wedding in June but promised to give it a good go. I wasn’t that confident, as Janet seemed low on energy and certainly not her brightest. I went to the first store with her and Heather and thought it was cool the owner came right over and offered to help. Janet was quiet about everything and a little disinterested and it seemed like this was going to be a long day. To take some pressure off, I dropped the ladies off at the mall and went to visit John for a bit. He’s in a temporary care home now and starting to settle in there a little. Please keep him in your prayers as he has to adjust to some big changes in his life. Upon my return to the mall Janet happily informed me they had found something. Turned out she wasn’t a hundred percent sure on it so the hunt continued. A little while later I got another report of success and the mission was being declared a success. Janet had steadily declined in energy level and to me didn’t seem to be having any fun at all. She was really neglecting her right side, frequently crashing into things. Thinking some food might help, we grabbed mall food and Janet only ate half of hers so we headed home for what I thought would be a good long nap.

An hour’s worth of rest helped Janet a little and happy hour on our patio helped more. This was the first time we’ve sat outside in the sun at our new house and it felt really good. Janet didn’t want it to end but a cloud covered the sun just as it was time to get ready for church so with her seeming more like herself, off we went. Tonight’s service “was a good one” says Janet and she was able to follow along with Tim’s message. By the time we were most of the way through our sushi dinner after church, Janet was fading again. She didn’t eat as much as she usually does and wasn’t really initiating any conversation. Back at home it was time to try on the dress and the other clothes Janet got today. She was pleased with her dress but Heather and I are so so with it. What do you think?

Potential mother of the bride dress.

Potential mother of the bride dress.


Heather and I like the top.

Heather and I like the top.


By this time Janet was quite out of it and should have gone to bed but she wanted ice cream so she quietly enjoyed that before getting ready. There was a return of her toileting challenges from last week this evening and put me in a foul mood. I don’t understand how she can be so bright and with it most of the time then have lapses like this. I pray that tomorrow, Janet is refreshed, rejuvenated, positive and energetic.

Janet, A Success Story. April 11. #TSJ

Friday was a pretty quiet day for Janet, only a stretching routine in the gym this morning, then home with me after lunch with a stop to pick up her new glasses along the way. The anticipation of Heather visiting had Janet pretty wound up the last couple of days and knowing today was the day seemed to overwhelm her a little. Janet had a couple hours of quiet time this afternoon and wasn’t ready to get up when it was time to go get Heather because I think very little of that time involved sleep. Janet was standing while we waited for Heather to deplane and was able to greet her with a nice hug. I was surprised at Janet not seeing Heather until she was twenty feet directly in front of us but I guess the angle she was standing at put Heather on her right more than I thought.

One of Heather’s goals for this visit is to find her mom a dress for the wedding. In a very un woman like way, Janet is almost complaining about going shopping. I’m hopeful that will change once she’s out in the field.

Janet managed a short walk from the dining table to the couch to watch The Voice after dinner. She complained that she was “out of it” on account of the three sips of wine she had. More like the lack of sleep which she is now catching up on.

Praying for a fun Saturday.

The Team Save Janet Report is Out! #TSJ #Dancing

Renovation Day 67. A day of dramatic results today as Randy installed cabinet door and handles in the kitchen. Now we have to remember where we put things because we can no longer see them.
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I got out to Connect and helped Janet get ready for the weekend and her appointment at OKAPED with Jeff. Janet seemed eager to go and reported a good day so far. Garrett mentioned he had her standing on her own for fifteen minutes this morning which is a major record. He was quite impressed and is excited to have Janet in an AFO so she can do even more.

Jeff is a very nice and smart guy who really took his time to assess Janet’s situation and to listen to her. I had hoped to walk out of the appointment with a product in hand or at least under construction but Janet will need something custom built and OKAPED doesn’t do the type of device Jeff feels Janet will need. He has referred her to Ortho Design, which is operated by a former colleague who is the best in the business around here. Hopefully we can get an appointment soon. Jeff did sell us an ankle brace that will be better than nothing over the Christmas break if it takes that long to get the AFO. Janet was pleased with the appointment and is happy we are making progress.

We stopped at home to get changed for the Connect Christmas party and we figured we’d give the new dress one more try and I promised not to get all stressed out about it. Janet had the brilliant idea of trying to put it on by stepping into it and wouldn’t you know it, victory!

We even got a nice red coat of hers onto her that she hasn’t worn in years so she was all decked out nice and fancy for the evening.

Because of the OKAPED appointment we were a little late arriving at the party and apparently missed the hot food. I was under the impression it was dinner but turns out it was just appetizers and all the hot things were gone by 7:15 when we arrived. Oh well, we had fun anyways. Karl, who has been off work injured for two months and hasn’t seen Janet in that long was there and couldn’t believe how well she is talking now and was shocked to see her stand. Janet stood with me for a number of pictures and was a bit of a celeb looking as fine as she did.
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The best part of the night for me was when Janet agreed to try a little dancing. I am a terrible dancer but figured I could handle this as there would not be any footwork involved. Janet of course was a little timid but managed to lose herself to the beat a couple times and was swaying in time better than me. She doesn’t think she did that well but to have her even trying was huge fun.
FirstDance
All the partying really wore Janet out and after a little snack at home it was off to bed. Praying for a night of deep and healing sleep, lots of energy and a positive attitude tomorrow and quick improvement in her control of her right leg.

The Team Save Janet Report is Out! #TSJ #football

Renovation Day 62. I think I was a little ahead of myself yesterday in giving Randy the day off. I was in Sunday mode but it was only Saturday so I suspect he was working from home on cupboard doors and such. Hopefully he took today off! Janet and I started to decorate a little then she decided she didn’t want to hang the pieces we were considering so down to the crawl space they go.

Today started a little earlier than yesterday with Janet willing to get up but not that thrilled about it. Her energy level was a little low all day and I’m not sure why. Our morning included a nice Skype chat with Mary/Gaga during which Janet communicated very well and was happy with how she did. I challenged Janet to make her own coffee this morning and she did so with minimal coaching. Our chores were completed in time for the Seahawks game and that is how we spent our afternoon. Like I said, Janet’s energy level was a little low so she wasn’t into cheering so much during today’s game and I think that was a contributing factor in the loss.

I suffered a bigger loss than the Seahawks today as a piece of Janet’s clothing finally beat me. We attended a turkey dinner for everyone in the complex this evening and Janet wanted to wear her new dress again. It was a challenge putting it on her for our party Friday but we were successful but tonight it beat me altogether. For now I’m saying it shrunk just enough in the wash and it wasn’t my incompetence that caused the fail. It did spoil the evening a little as I was not a very happy guy after battling a dress for half an hour. Janet said she had fun at the dinner and we did meet some nice people there but it was a little weird and old. Still good to go as I learned I will be assisting with the next event, a wine tasting in January. Word travels fast!

Returning to Connect Janet asked to get ready for bed then have me read Open for a little while. That was a nice way to calm back down for both of us and I found it very hard to leave the room for the night. Part of me gets very used to having Janet at home, especially the new one, and part of me wants her to keep working hard at Connect to get better. I know the latter is what she needs still and the prospect of Janet being at home full time is a little frightening right now but having to say goodnight and drive thirty minutes away sucks.

Praying for a night of restoration and lots of energy for a productive tomorrow.

The Team Save Janet Report is Out! #TSJ #Party

Renovation Day 60. The electrician was here first thing this morning and finally completed the electrical work! Randy was here too and put in a couple more drawers, re installed the bathroom mirrors and built a wheelchair ramp at the garage entrance. A few weeks ago I had mentioned to the Strata my concern about condensation on some of the windows in the mornings. Valley Glass came by this afternoon and measured for the replacement of two of our windows and maybe more depending on what the Strata thinks. A good day of progress.

Because of the busy morning we were up early and its a good thing too. Once breakfast was done Janet and I started getting the place ready for our house dedication party tonight. Janet was a good assistant all day doing a variety of tasks from sorting to decorating, helping to cook, arranging furniture and cleaning.

We made a run for a few last minute groceries and to pick up some macaron from Sandrine. Janet hadn’t seen Sandrine for quite a long time and they had a brief but warm reunion with Janet saying to me with a big smile afterwards, “she’s really nice”. And she makes awesome desserts!

Janet faded soon after our late lunch and called her own nap time wanting to be as awake as possible for tonight. That was a good call as she slept for two hours and I think would have gone more if I let her but it was time to get really busy. There was still food to prepare and wine glasses to put out and Janet had to get into her new party dress. Despite our best efforts we got way behind schedule and with thirty minutes to go and Janet’s dress half on, the gate phone rang. Thankfully it was Courtney who went to work right away and saved our butts big time.

Janet was super excited about people coming over tonight and when the first folks arrived she opened the door and greeted them with an enthusiasm I’ve not seen in a long time. Her eyes sparkled all night with only a few moments where I noticed things maybe overwhelming her a little. According to Janet she liked all the people that were here tonight and they are “very nice people and fun, and our new neighbours are all very nice too”. It was an enjoyable evening and is hopefully the first of many more.

Still pumped up from the party Janet took a little while to wind down after the last guests left. We opened the cards and gifts that some people brought then watched a little TV until yawning became the thing Janet was doing the most of.

I feel tonight did Janet a lot of good. She was shown how a lot of grown up intelligent people love her, how many of those have been beside her since she got sick and how blessed we are to have a home with which we can welcome our family, old friends, new friends, and soon to be friends. Praying for a night of deep and healing sleep.