Challenging Day

July 9, 2008

Tough day for Mariah. Nasty “procedure” this morning to check out the structural integrity of her heart. The docs are still trying to figure out why she had a stroke so she can mitigate those risk factors in the future. That required a breathing tube and a probe into her tummy right next to her heart. 😦 That ordeal was followed by hard physical and occupational therapy that made her weep. In the plus column, she was able to sweep her left arm outward with enough force to smack the therapist pretty hard. That made Mariah smile broadly. 🙂   And later her speech therapist rigged her up with a sensitive switch attached to her left index finger that turned on a radio when she wiggled it. When asked to turn it off, Mariah refused as she was listening to a country favorite. Her courage and determination break my heart and fill me with awe.

It’s great to be working from DC and close to Mariah again, but the doctors apparently plan to move her to Richmond, VA, to a big Veterans Administration rehab facility next week. The round trip from DC to Richmond is over 4 hours and about $40 in gas, so I’ll probably be moving again soon. With most of her support network based around DC, I worry that Mariah will have far fewer visitors in Richmond. But the care is reputed to be very good and she can stay there on an inpatient basis for as long as necessary, a requirement most private rehab facilities paid for by insurance can’t fulfill.

Mariah said goodbye to her brother Clay this afternoon when he reluctantly returned to North Carolina. He was cheered when he realized his sister will soon be much closer to him. “Only fifteen hours by bicycle”, he chirped.

What is it with these kids?

– Mark


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