Tuesday, July 13, 2010

What I did on my summer vacation: part 2 Sister-sitting

Our parents are in Spain and Portugal and even before they booked the trip they checked to be sure that I could be around to keep an eye on Andie. With the brain injury still in the healing stages she still has some memory issues and needs some supervision since, well, anyone could forget to turn off the stove after cooking, but she's much more likely to, plus she needs someone to communicate for her in some cases so being alone long term isn't an option right now. She is doing pretty well physically, still walks slowly and tires easily ( she and Josh are keeping pretty much the same sleep schedule ) Her brain still needs time to re-wire itself around the injured areas and some of the brain cells are just gone so her range of motion with her right arm is limited and probably will continue to be.
I'm trying to motivate her to go walking when Josh and I go but she's always got an excuse to get out of it. She did go swimming with us the other day and actually got her hair wet! With as much time as it takes her to blow it out I thought whe wouldn't. She's been saying that noise is bothering her - like when someone is having a conversation outside of the speech therapy room while she's trying to think it distracts her and Josh is just a loud kid so she does need to get away from that once in a while so I make a point of getting him outside during the day sometimes she comes out too and sits out on the porch. There are times that she gets really frustrated either because of noise or just because of not finding a word because of the aphasia and then she exerts so much energy talking about being frustrated I try to tell her to use that energy to pause and think of the word or of whatever her train of thought was ... I know, easy for me to say.... But she does need to get more physical activity and I'll keep asking her to go walking in the hope that one of these times she will.
We stopped in at TGI Friday's the other day and I asked her then if the noise there bothered her and interestingly enough it didn't until she stopped to try to read the menu, I guess because she was happy to be seeing her friends there and she was used to that environment.
Andie's still keeping an eye on her blood sugar even though she's not on pills for diabetes anymore she seemed to crash a bit as we left speech therapy today but a granola bar helped and then we stopped at a buffet since she said she was too tired to cook, we had a small, early lunch - and I guess didn't want to wait for me to do it. On the way home we were all full and Josh was so stuffed he was in the backseat literally unbuttoning his pants on the way home. That kid ate crablegs(for a while he had three young waitresses watching him expertly pick the meat out) , shrimp, clams, chicken, more crab legs and multiple desserts!! Andie and I were alot more reasonable with our choices, but still full!
While we're here Josh and I will continue to take Andie to Good Shepherd for therapy. We walked around today Josh met and got permission to pet a service dog, then we and saw their huge therapy pool and found a fountain to sit by outside, it was pretty humid so after Josh goofed around there with two boys we made our way back inside and sat there a few minutes until speech therapy was done. It's just easier for her to have a ride than to rely on the bus system and it gives us another place to explore together.

What I did on my summer vacation: part 1 - Josh

Running across the lawns to see the best friend - watching next door to see when the playmate there is around, playing on the grass, riding bikes on the sidewalks, going to the Hokey pool - all this is stuff I did probably 40 ... yeah, I said forty!... years ago and Josh is now doing the same stuff at the same houses ( the kids aren't related to my playmates) but he's having a blast introducing himself around the neighborhood while we're here with my sister and our parents are on a tour of Spain and Portugal.
The kid next door he's known awhile and always looks forward to seeing him when we're here. The first afternoon and morning we were here he kept asking about him, until we spotted a boy down through the yards at the same house where my best friend used to live and he went down there and started playing. He's there during the days with his grandparents and little sister and he and Josh get along well. The grandparents are nice, great to talk to and I think it's a good thing for us to have something to do since Andie's hypersensitive to noises and Josh has no volume control so it gives her a break to have some quiet or to do her speech therapy homework and to not have to be surrounded by noise all day.
I keep thinking about how cool it is that when I was little I did pretty much the same stuff Josh and friends are doing now. Well, except we had alot less parental supervision, no battery powered, ride - on vehicles and simpler toys. Uh, catching lightning bugs, wiffle ball, and flashlight tag (this was pre lazer tag) were the big activities back in the day. Oh and walking around in the puddles after rain storms. Today I had a flash back while walking Josh around the block about the one girl that lived down the street who used to eat catfood and brag about liking it. Sometimes I wonder what happened to some of these people. As we walked this morning Josh saw a mom bringing her toddler daughter outside and was like "do you have any boys??"!!! I explained that he's looking for more kids to get together to play.