18th January - They tried to make me go to rehab....

Just a little update to warm the winter months.....at the end of October my niece, Bill's granddaughter, turned 3. To mark the occasion a small party was held, however Ellie's birthday also marked the moving of Lucy & her husband to Lincoln meaning that all of Bill's 3 children have now left Cornwall.

This has been a hard adjustment for us all, leaving dad helpless & far away. Luckily, help was found in the form of Maureen, who had caring experience and was looking to move to Cornwall to be nearer her grandchildren. She has now moved into Pete's former room and, while she hasn't taken on the caring burden, she has made herself available to take Bill to appointments, cook a few meals now & then and just be there in case of any emergencies or accidents.

In early November I was lucky enough to attend a visit with Bill's neurological physiotherapist. Although it'd previously been suggested that there wasn't much that could be done, I was surprised to be told enthusiastically about the progress dad was making. It seems that on his initial visits, lying on a side and rolling to his back was a near impossible task and now he could do that with ease. He had also managed to learn to stand unaided and was working on simple training requiring him to stand up, pick up a rubber ring from a vertical post and transfer it to a horizontal post. The therapist explained that he had been unable to do any of these things when he first started in August & that he was making huge, if slow, progress. The next steps were to be able to stand unaided and twist to the left or right without losing balance.

I'd like to say here and now that Becky at Helston Physiotherapy Practice deserves a huge amount of thanks for her patience and hard work - it seems she really is a miracle worker.

Bill has been using an ancient exercise bike to pedal at home (he sits in his armchair and extends his feet), as this will help with co ordination and muscle mass- we bought him a small version with just pedals, but he found it unhelpful since it had a much smaller turning circle and tended to slip away from his feet.

I was due to head down to Cornwall today for my first visit of the new year, however due to snowy conditions in London and along the whole route home, I've been told to stay in London and go down next weekend instead (needless to say, I'm curled up with a nice glass of red wine as we speak). I hope to be able to update again after that, but dad certainly feels more confident and, in fact, he has been trying to start using his laptop again and was able to read some of the lovely comments you have all been leaving - he was really happy and grateful for all the support. Hopefully, before too long, we can get him sending short emails and surfing the net so his day isn't filled with awful cookery shows and daytime tv.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas & New Year.