Saturday, September 18, 2010

Big Rich and GT visit - part I...

This past week has been a good one for us! My little (6'4") brother Rich, whom Ben has always called Big Rich, and GT, Ben's buddy from work in GA came to visit!! We had alot of fun and they were able to help Ben in his therapies and encourage him!

Rich got here bright and early Monday morning. I wish you could have seen Ben's face (the one time I didn't have my camera) when he saw Rich! It lit up and he had the biggest grin! Rich was able to get in pool with Ben that morning! Of course there were the times of hard work and then the times of goofing off!
This time in the pool marked another huge accomplishment for Ben! PT had him move to the other pool today! This pool, in the same pool area, has a wheelchair ramp and a long walking area that doesn't change depths. Well, instead of holding on to a therapist or a noodle to walk Ben used his new way of walking...with the regular walker!! For the first time he did an amazing job!! Rich was able to help him along the way and coach him to work hard and keep his head up!
After the hard work came the punching match and the cheese heads! My brother knows how to make a person laugh and I am sure Ben was laughing hard inside!

The rest of the day was filled with lunch, a long walk outside, neuropsych, dinner, and me snuggling with Ben! I love this time! No distractions and just quite time for both of us! I came back to my room to see Rich already asleep...I think he passed out about 8:30pm!!

Tuesday was a very full day but it was so much fun and filled with more new things for Ben! Of course first came speech therapy! His therapist has been working with Ben on his words and the volume of his voice. She will show him words on 3x5 cards and has him first go through them and say them all. Then she mixes them all up and has Ben look at the word and has to then descibe it to her without using the word. Ben has to give her different clues and catergories for the word. She is also teaching him that if someone cannot hear him that he askes them to move closer or if he needs more time to answer the question then he needs to say that he needs time to think about it. He has been doing great!!

After ST then came PT! First came stretching....this Ben used to like but these days he is not a fan of it! GT was there so he jumped up and the mat and did some too. When Ben is uncomfortable he says Rangers Lead the Way in a very loud voice! After stretching all the boys were on the mat and did some sit ups! It was great to watch and you can tell there was alot of competition going on!
Stretching and sit ups done and it was off to the parallel bars for some sit to stands from wheelchair to standing! Ben had a bit of help on the first one but then after that he was on his own! I think he was showing off on how much he could do and I was happy about that!! He then was able walk to the end of the bars. One more task before he was done and that was walking with the regular walker! He had GT to stand beside him and (tall) Rich in front of him to help keep his head up! He made a couple trips around the gym and did AMAZING!

Ben and all of us got about a 30 min break and then we were all off to an outting! Rich asked Ben what he wanted to do when he was there and Ben said, "go fishing!" Well, off we went! We stopped by In-N-Out for all of our favorite foods and a chocolate milkshake for Ben! We then drove to a place called Shoreline lake and ate our food there. While we were sitting there a lady that worked there told us that fishing was not allowed!! What!! Ben's rec therapist went in the shop a few min later and explained the situation and told her that it is for therapy and that we were not using hooks! We got the go ahead! So, we went down on the dock and started fishing! Well, those boys had it in their heads that you cannot fish without hooks and put a few on! GT dropped his line in the water and snagged one! We were quietly laughing so hard!! Of course we put them all (hooked 3) because they were tiny lil suckers! Ben had a great time of casting and reeling them in! We were out for about 2.5 hours and when Ben got back to his room he closed his eyes and fell asleep instantly! He had a good day but was for sure pooped out!!

{look at this whopper!!}

Early that evening Rich, GT and I headed up to AT&T park in San Francisco for the Giants game! Well, it was cold and got to be a boring game because the Giants were not scoring! Booo! It was a fun experience though and fun to go to a stadium that we all had never been to before! Come to find out...the won the following night! Man oh man! be continued...


Anonymous said...

Katie!! I can just feel the joy radiating from Ben's face in the picture woth Rich and GT. YAY!! for the Rec. Therapist. I am so glad Ben got to go fishing. Have you heard the Rodney Atkins song that talks about fishing as therapy for the soldier. The CD is It's America, and it is the last song on the CD. Rejoicing and much love, Marion

Melody Cook said...

I'm so glad that Ben had some dudes come to visit, take him fishing, swim - you know, do the dude-testosterone stuff. I'm thinking and praying for you guys today - I hope you've had a wonderful week! I love and miss you - keep Benny-Boo active :-)