Sunday, 13 May 2012


Earlier this week, Mr Trifectagirl was assessed for a brain injury rehabilitation unit.

On the pro side of the assessment - he has excellent sitting balance which will allow him to participate in the activities, and he's young.

On the con side - he has chronic back pain (which they're working on alleviating) and seemed not to understand instructions or questions, nor copy actions.  For example he answered 'yes' to 'are you in a hotel?', and couldn't poke his tongue out.  He did however also identify he was in a hospital.

The doctor acknowledged it was a relatively quick assessment, and the conclusion is he's been accepted into the unit to have a shot at rehab. 

So yet again, we're waiting on a bed, and then phase 3 of recovery begins.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

You can see what he's like....

This was the 'most helpful' (heavy on the sarcasm) comment on Mr Trifectagirl's neurological state of one of the interns on the stroke ward during the week after I asked how he was going.  I had to actually hunt a doctor down and ask because no-one has really been telling me anything on how he's going.  Over the course of this week he's stopped trying to speak as much, using 'thumbs up' to communicate, and isn't moving around the bed as much.

It's time for a move. He seems to be plateauing, which is understandable since his is in an acute care ward, not a rehab facility. At at least the the overall team think there is enough there to consider rehab, rather than just place him in a residential care facility for the next 30-40 years.

So, thankfully he is being assessed for transfer to a Brain Injury Rehabilitation Unit (BIRU) this week.  He just needs to behave, not play jokes and cooperate with the doctor while the assessment is on!! As my sister said, this is not the time to tick the 'I'm a vegetable' box.   And he wasn't happy when I told him I'll be there while the assessment will be occurring.

The next day I had a call from the liaison nurse at the BIRU - just as well I'd asked what was going on, otherwise I'd have been somewhat surprised by this call.  She was gobsmacked at the Doctor's comment, too!  The conversation was to find out some background on Mr Trifectagirl.  How independent was he prior to the stroke? Very. Did he drive?  Yes. Was he working? No, he was a full-time stay at home dad, plus doing some study. So he helped with housework?  No.  Mutual laughing.   What was he studying?  OH&S and Training.   Basically - he was a man in his mid-40's, going about his business, and then had this major brain injury event. 

So, yes I can see what he's like, but it seems I and the other professions on the team are seeing more than you do.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Golden Retreivers

We had great progress show itself when I visited today!  Mr Trifectagirl has started trying to speak.

It's in-comprehensible, not quite the 'golden retreiver' sound described by Jill Bolte Taylor in her TED talk, but in the realm.

Five or so days ago he was trying 'sssss' or 'zzzzzz', but that was it.  Today it was attempts at full words and sentences.  He is frustrated, but I get the feeling he knows he's progressing. 

We had one funny exchange.  I told him I miss him.  His attempt at a response sounded like 'why'?  "Why!?!?  Why?!?!?  because I love you!!!".   He cracked up.  He at least is laughing quite freely!

One side affect that has started to become apparent is his sense of taste may have been scrambled.  This is a man who loves his food, particularly flavour.  He is on the 'fat is flavour' side of the fence.  He had his birthday lunch booked 12 months in advance after loving the meal last year - this is the birthday lunch that this illness hit. 

I bought him some fast food on the weekend and he looked so excited to receive it.  He tried a few pieces, and then declined any further.  It was like the experience didn't live up the the reality, and you could see the disappointment on his face.  I hope that his sense of taste works it way back.