I have a super-tall uncle. He was the uncle we used to argue over who got to ride on his shoulders: at 6’8″ish it was fun to try not to get knocked off at doorways. He always tried to duck 🙂 He is also super-active, and always has been: baseball, basketball, all of those team sports. He’s now in his 50s but still active.
The day after my wedding, my uncle had a stroke. His 10 year old daughter was smart and called her mom, and then 911, and he was taken to the hospital. He was in ICU for a while, but was eventually moved, and soon ended up in the ARU (acute rehabilitation unit, I think). Since he lives in Orange County, Mike and I are the (geographically) closest family outside his immediate family, and so when my mom came into town to see him and we went took her. And we were amazed: we were ready for the worst, but he actually was looking pretty good. He was talking, swallowing, feeding himself, and just looked so much better than we had feared. I kept waiting for him to get up, as I’d forget there was anything wrong. It was just my uncle, and I was so relieved to see that.
This last weekend we saw him again. Since he won’t be able to live on his own any more, he is moving in with his fiancee. Mike and I were hoping to help him get moved, but his friends had it all done before we arrived. And we were given a couch and some coffee tables. So we now have a “grownup” living room, as I call it. So thanks Uncle Kelly.
He is doing so well that each time they evaluate him, they move up his release date. He surprised everyone in each therapy session and with each of their markers of progress. And now it is set for tomorrow. He will get to go home tomorrow. I’m so glad my uncle is ok!
While we have both lived in southern California for years, I haven’t seen him or the kids as often as I would like. I think this was a reminder: don’t take advantage of being so close that you can see them whenever. Each day can bring a surprise. I’m glad I will get to visit him another time, and I am going to try to not wait so long this time!