Thursday, April 29, 2010

Therapy Graduate

Mom’s done with therapy! For a month or so, she’s had nothing but speech, and she was released from that this week. It seems like the “end” of her stroke experience, but I know that’s not really the case. Still, it’s a good time to take stock of things.
Her voice sounds a little different than before the stroke and the rhythm of her speech is entirely different – not slower, but her intonation isn’t the same. Her left hand is still weaker and less flexible than her right. I don’t think she’s lost any reasoning ability, but it takes her a little while to process her thoughts. (I suspect this might be part of the difference in the cadence of her speech, too; she seems to be counting her sentences.) She recognizes this when it happens, which I think is helpful, but it frustrates her. I think she’s more emotional than before, too. She may experience improvement for over a year, but I’m thrilled that she’s already where she is.
Last week, we went shopping at TJ Maxx, where we tried on all these beautiful, patrician hats. Because the Kentucky Derby will be run soon, we pretended to be there, drinking mint juleps in our glamorous hats. To excuse our silliness, she told someone, “You’ll have to excuse me; I had a brain injury.” I’m telling ya, this lady will milk it . . .

Mayberry Village

Mom and her cousin are both fans of The Andy Griffith Show, so we visited “Mayberry Village” over the weekend. A development corp created this Mayberry-themed shopping/services area and built sfh’s, condos and apartments behind it. The village is cute and has Floyd’s Barber Shop, Andy & Barney’s Sports Bar, etc. All that was missing was the whistled theme song.
We had lunch at a chili joint and then moved on to the cemetery. I’d wanted to know where Marvel’s parents were buried for some time, since it plugs a gap in my knowledge of family grave locations. This particular cemetery is the location for lots of my family members as well as my husband’s; we ended up staying there over an hour.
We took a long ride before heading home. It’s always fun to hear people reminisce about where they lived, worked and went to school. What a fun way to spend an afternoon.
Mom even drove herself to my house. It’s the first time she’s driven alone since the stroke!


Look at these beauties! I found a baker’s dozen last night while mowing the lawn; I’m sure glad I decided not to use the rider! They were on the north side of a rotting tree stump, just where all the old-timers claim that you’ll find them. I’m taking them to Mom’s tonight for a treat.
After finding them, I called Mom’s cousin to tell him and see if he had any recommendations. There’s a huge amount of morel knowledge out there, and I didn’t want to miss an opportunity to gain some. Well, I got more than I was expecting!
Leroy had a few preferences about how to cut and store them, of course. He also said to save the water in which they were washed and pour it over the area where I found them. He claims that this will spread spores for next year. Uh, sure. Now, this guy would happily mess with my head. I’m not sure if he was serious or if he was in hysterics after hanging up with me.
As I walked in my pajamas to “morel field” in the dark, trying not to slosh any water out of the bowl, I thought how easy it is to be fooled by your elders. When I get old, I’m going to tell this morel secret: Face west, put your right ankle on your left knee, cross your arms, and hop three times to ensure five years of morel bounty from the ground.
Sheesh, I’m gullible!

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