laurel

Janet, A Success Story. March 22. #TSJ

This day didn’t turn out the way Janet or I had hoped at all. Laurel arrived on time this morning, picked up by Jaq and Suzanne who were on their way to the coast. Unfortunately Janet had woken up at 6:30 feeling sick and spent the rest of the day on the toilet or with her head in a bucket. There are no signs of flu and I’m confident this is just some nasty little stomach thing that will go away by tomorrow. After quite a few naps Janet managed to keep down a half can of Fresca as well as her meds before going to bed a few minutes ago and is sleeping soundly as I write.

Praying for a full and fast recovery and a fun day tomorrow.

This was a false alarm but sums up Janet's day.

This was a false alarm but sums up Janet’s day.

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

Renovation Day 72. Randy installed the glass doors on the remaining cabinets today and I think only has a small job in each bathroom before declaring the renovation complete. Yeah!

Janet did her regular morning routine which included a bike ride and some stretching after a shower and breakfast. She told me she handed out the last of her Christmas cards and did some comprehension work with Mary Lou.

As far as Janet is concerned the day didn’t really begin until Laurel arrived at Connect and the two of them went out for lunch and did a little Christmas shopping. Laurel said her mom did well at choosing and paying for the items she chose and Janet seemed pleased with herself and was all smiles about it when they got home. Janet was a little worn out though and agreed to try a nap for a bit. I think she did sleep for half an hour or so and gained more energy as she ate dinner and watched the final performance show of X Factor.

The deal was if we stayed home for dinner and watched X Factor then she’d have to go to the gym when we got back to Connect and that’s what she did. Since she rode the bike in the morning and did a little walking at home the Shuttle was the best option for tonight. Janet of course didn’t like that idea but cooperated and put in a very strong effort. Her extension is now a consistent twelve inches and occasionally nears thirteen. She managed some good pushes with just her right leg even with more tension on there than she’s used to. There were protests at first but once she realized she just had to try her best she bore down and worked hard. We tried a little balancing board after the Shuttle and got some decent pushes with her right leg then as well. Janet has trouble bending her knees which I think is what you have to do on that board but she tried hard and had a good rhythm going for a while.

I’m not sure if the staff have started Janet’s self medication program yet but for her evening ones I’ve only had to ask Janet questions around what time it is and she clues in that she needs her meds. She doesn’t hesitate at all to find a staff member and ask them for her drugs, medicine, meds, medical things, pills, special things or some other word close to that. We will work on the names of each one over the Christmas break and also see if she can remember to ask for them without prompting. I think she can in the morning for sure.

We all watched a little TV so Janet could wind down and she called bedtime a little earlier than normal after a pretty busy day. Praying for a good sleep tonight and lots of energy tomorrow as well as a safe and on time flight for Heather.

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

Renovation Day 56. Randy was here for a good chunk of the day putting the finishing touches to a lot of the drawers. Janet, Laurel and I did a lot of decorating. The house is really looking like a home now.
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Janet woke up this morning feeling good but complaining about being a little sore. I think the mattress we got is too soft so I’m going to see if we can switch to something firmer. Janet also finds it hard to adjust her positioning in bed. I thought it was mostly because I had her on the opposite side from what she’s used to but we tested the other side this morning and found the same result.

After breakfast we all got started emptying the last few boxes and filling shelves. Laurel was a big help in hanging paintings and pictures with Janet making good choices on what goes where. It was steady work for the balance of the day and Janet hung in there and contributed the whole time. She did have one lapse in judgement when we unpacked a little statue and I claimed it was from her mom and Keith and she thought she bought it. We put a Blizzard on the line and called Mary/Gaga to settle the bet. I won. Janet was a little frustrated with losing but showed how much she’s thinking these days by commenting that she has no money and asking how she’d pay for a Blizzard. Laurel and I assured her that she has money, our money, and she seemed fine with that for now. Janet has raised this concern before and even asked if she should get a job soon. It would be awesome if she got well enough to work at something one day but I reassured her that she doesn’t need to work.

All the thinking that goes into decorating wore Janet out a little and she agreed to a nap before going for an early dinner so we could drop Laurel at the airport. Janet is always sad when the kids leave after a visit, especially a short one like this but Laurel will be back for Christmas in a couple of weeks and that allowed Janet to hold back the tears.

Our plan upon returning to Connect was to watch the Seahawks game but since they were dominating the Saints right from the start I convinced Janet to get in a bike ride then watch the second half. Her ride was decent, breaking the two mile mark and pedalling at level 2.5 the entire thirty minutes. A pretty good warm up for what I hope will be a strong day tomorrow.

The football game was a blow out so we watched The Voice with Wes and Kieran with Janet being pretty quiet as she wound down from a busy weekend. Praying for a night of deep and healing sleep and lots of strength for an active day tomorrow.

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

Renovation Day 54. Randy installed all the shelves in the kitchen and by the fireplace and finished the drawers in the Island. That allowed us to load the new pots and pans as well as one big box of other kitchen stuff and tomorrow we can do a bunch more. Yeah!

After a good night’s sleep Janet was ready to get up a little later than her usual time and we enjoyed a leisurely breakfast in anticipation of doing some work before Laurel’s arrival in the afternoon. Janet accepted the job of vacuuming the furniture which is easier here with the central vacuum but still a good workout for her. Between that and putting away stuff in the kitchen it was a busy morning.

Janet was very excited that Laurel was arriving today and demonstrated that with a big smile and a shake of her fist as we pulled out of the garage to go get her. We stopped and grabbed take out at Urban Fare to eat at home as Janet was really wanting Laurel to see the place. She gave her the tour as soon as we got there and spent the rest of the afternoon chatting and looking for recipes to do some baking tomorrow.

Laurel’s alma matter, UNBC, was playing at UBCO tonight so we drove in the wet snow to see that game. Susanne met us there and Janet really enjoyed the evening. The game was entertaining and Janet loved talking to her daughter and friend instead of just me. The game was webcast and Laurel’s former coach was watching in Prince George and messaged her to say she saw us and that Janet looks great. Indeed she does and Janet got a kick out of the fact someone saw her from so far away, especially someone she knows. Thanks for the hello Loralyn, that was cool.

The dinner choice was Janet’s and she wanted Asian Pear and was very conscious of not eating as much as she did last time, remembering her sore tummy afterwards. Janet ate well and I had the opportunity to tell her how much she’s improved in that area as I saw her calmly sitting there eating and drinking. I used to be quite stressed when we first were able to go out, worrying how much she would spill on herself, would she choke, could she even pick up the food on her plate. Tonight she served herself from the buffet and I think dropped one snow pea on the floor. She’s come along way!

I had heard that LifeChurch.tv was interviewing Kevin Durant today and since he was Janet’s favourite basketball player prior to getting sick I though we would try and watch it. Turned out to be a very interesting and inspiring message, check it here if you like. We all gained respect for him as a person and Janet connected with his statement that you have to work at growing spiritually. For fun to end the evening we tried out the new Karaoke Channel on TV. Once I got used to selecting the songs it was kind of fun and I think we will make this a regular thing to keep Janet’s vocal exercises going.

The first full day at home for the weekend was a good one with Janet staying bright and with it all day. We ditched her wheelchair footrest this morning, at least for when she’s in the house, and so far so good. For most outside trips we’ll still use it but I figure if she’s starting to walk she better start using that leg to propel her chair as well.

Praying for a good night of rest that brings lots of energy for tomorrow.

The Team Save Janet Report is Out! #TSJ #seahawks #snf #dqblizzard #camping

Janet slept well last night and was pretty lively this morning enjoying breakfast conversation with Laurel while I helped a couple load our bed onto their trailer. I placed an ad to sell our bed a couple days ago not wanting to get stuck moving it and had seven enquiries about it just like that. I guess I priced it right. Tonight then is our first night of “camping”. Janet napped this afternoon on the downstairs sofa bed and is snoring on it as I write this. The only hassle about this arrangement is I have to carry her downstairs but there’s only two more nights for her in this house so its no big deal.

There weren’t quite as many trips to the bathroom this morning but Janet was still busy there and by the time she was done and our bed was gone it was pretty much lunchtime. There was time for a little exercise though and Janet did some good standing on her own. I had hoped she’d demo some of the yoga she did at Connect the other day but no go. Her right foot wasn’t cooperating that well today but I think we gave it a good little workout.

We elected to bring home sushi for lunch and enjoyed it outside on another beautiful late summer day. Courtney and her friend arrived just as we finished, to haul away more of our stuff. Glad we can find a home for things, now the house is really starting to look like we’re moving.

Laurel for some strange reason wanted to go back to Calgary today but she owed me a Blizzard from a previous NBA bet and it was time to settle. Of course Janet benefitted too as we all tried the new Snickers Blizzard. Janet says it was the best ever, I say Skor still rules.

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Janet and I considered going car shopping after DQ but she wasn’t feeling that well so I got her home and into bed for a good nap. She was well rested and ready to watch the Seahawks beat the 49ers on Sunday Night Football and we had a good Skype chat with Andrew during the one hour lighting delay. Halftime was the perfect time for a hot tub and we spent the fourth quarter with Janet’s legs in the extenders and her remembering she’d had a Blizzard earlier so denying herself ice cream tonight.

Praying for lots of rest and a stronger and more responsive right leg.

The Team Save Janet Report is Out! #TSJ #LaurelandRaj #lunch #standing

As expected, Janet got up fairly early this morning knowing she could visit Laurel and Raj. Her night was somewhat restless with a good start and a not so good middle. The morning with Laurel and Raj was good though and Janet seemed quite bright and happy the whole time. Laurel went through some of the memorabilia we had found and shared a lot of it with Janet and that produced a lot of laughs. Laurel and Raj treated us to a nice lunch at Joey’s before they started their drive to the coast. Janet got quiet at the restaurant as the lack of sleep caught up with her. It was still a nice time and Janet ate well saying “that’s way better than what I get at school”. Connect has been referred to as school a lot lately and I guess that’s ok.

Once back at Connect a very tired Janet hung in there for our meeting with wheelchair guy. I think we’ve finally started the final bit of test driving and should have something to buy in the next few weeks after one more modification. Sounds like Janet has selected the color of the chair already, pink. She very willingly headed to bed for a nap right after the meeting and slept for a short while then was awake more than sleeping for the next hour. That gave her enough energy to say “let’s get done what I have to get done”. Meaning, lets go to the gym. With a much better attitude and me not distracted by my phone, Janet had a great Shuttle workout, followed by a good little standing session and some good stretching with Garrett. After dinner she said she wanted to do the Standing Frame so she could be done and she handled almost an hour in it nicely. That left us a little time for a walk and some YouTube before the tiredness crept back up on Janet.

Another solid day with signs of improvement. Praying for an active and productive tomorrow.

The Team Save Janet Report is Out! #TSJ #LaurelandRaj #home #purging #meltdown

Jess reports Janet had a very busy first part of her day, doing lots of work in the gym, Speech with Mary Lou and helping Jess make biscuits for tonight’s dinner. Tez mentioned he wants Janet’s work on the Shuttle to focus on her right leg as she really needs to build strength in it. She did the full workout as well as lots of sit to stand exercises. Janet said she didn’t help much with the biscuits but it sounds like Speech was incorporated into the process as she did say she read the recipe out loud. There hasn’t been much change in Janet’s volume level but the memory keeps improving even if she struggles to find the right words. Tonight she retold the story of the lunatics at the London Drugs parking lot on Monday correctly stating “we were only in there ten minutes…” then carrying on with a somewhat jumbled but accurate description of the encounter. Pretty impressive I think.

I snuck up on Janet as she wheeled from the living room and followed her to the kitchen sink and almost out the door to the patio after I got to Connect. She couldn’t quite get the door open herself but gave it a good try. We had a nice talk in the sun for a bit and since she had just gotten out of the Standing Frame decided to do a Shuttle session then hit the road for home as Laurel and Raj were coming in tonight for a brief visit. I didn’t get the sense that Janet was particularly tired prior to getting to the gym, that sure changed in a hurry though. My original thought was for her to have a rest, dinner, gym then go home. Should’ve stuck to that as Janet had enough of a meltdown in the gym to warrant a time out for an hour after Garrett managed a little stretching with her. She definitely was tired as she slept for almost an hour but I’ll take some blame for the meltdown for not being focused on her when she was on the Shuttle. I need to ignore my phone when working with her like that.

Janet made a nice recovery after her nap. She of course said she wouldn’t sleep and when I checked her after thirty minutes she was right out. We stopped at Save On and got a bunch of groceries on the way home then built our own sandwiches for dinner. I’m having to help Janet less and less with this sort of thing as long as we can take the time needed for her to figure things out. I’ve never had her try the squeeze bottle of mayo before but she quickly figured out how to open it, she just isn’t strong enough to do it completely. Before Laurel and Raj arrived we had time to sort through a few more boxes from under the stairs and these made Janet a little sad. Most were filled with stuff she was saving for the possibility of her opening her own pre school one day. She repeatedly said “I guess I’ll never be a pre school teacher again”. No tears but close and I really felt for her but I also know its really good she acknowledges things like that and it reminds me of the need to keep her contributing to our life and hers at Connect. She needs to feel useful.

Laurel and Raj arrived just after nine and we enjoyed a nice visit before bed. They are on their way to the coast for a wedding so we’ll see them for half the day tomorrow before its back to work for Janet. There were lots of positives today even with the little meltdown and Janet of course was very excited to see Laurel and Raj. Praying for lots of rest tonight and a fun day tomorrow.