A tribute to the brave men and women that have fought for our country. By talented, young artist Noelle Garcia. Featured on her new album "Set the World On Fire" being released October 2009. Owned by World Library Publications, 800-566-6150. www.wlpmusic.com.
From Erin’s Dad Tony: Sam was given a cognitive evaluation last week by his speech therapist at CareMeridian and he scored a 100 out of 116. This is significant in that three months ago he was given the same test and scored 73. The therapist said they will probably need to give him a more advanced test next time so they can continue to document his progress.
Sam and his therapist have been working on his “transfer” training (Sam helping them move him from his bed to his wheel chair or wheel chair to his therapy table). At his last session, Sam’s therapist only had to use one hand to transfer him and Sam was able to do the rest with his right arm…which seems to be getting stronger all the time. There is also a transfer board that he has to maneuver under himself which aids in sliding his body between bed and chair. This is a big change from when Sam was at Kentfield Rehab Hospital because just four months ago, he was being transferred totally by a body sling and lift.
My daughter Allison and her fiancé Lewis came to visit Sam this past weekend—significant in that Sam remembered Allison is pregnant and he remembers Lewis who came into Sam’s life after he was injured. Allison said Sam started talking to her right when they came in the room without having to prompt him or ask him any questions. That brings up another bright spot in Sam’s ongoing improvement—he is talking much more often and his speaking voice is marginally clearer. Part of Sam’s therapy involves calling Erin every morning (with the aid of the therapist) before she arrives at the rehab home. This helps him to practice initiating conversation and is also meant to reassure Sam that Erin is just a phone call away and can be by his side within 15 minutes if needed. Sam had another special guest a few weeks ago…our dog Max. Max is a miniature Schnauzer a very friendly and calm dog. Sam enjoyed having Max visit as did the nurses and other patients.
From Sam’s dad Eric: We saw Sam and Erin yesterday[9/28/09], and they looked terrific. He had shaved himself, was very responsive, and in spite of the warmth of the day, loved being outdoors on the patio. The staff at CareMeridian is top notch and as we visited, one of Sam’s favorite nurses brought him some cold packs for his neck and arms to ensure his comfort. Another had just served several of us ice water as we interacted with Sam. Erin had been reading to Sam, but they seemed to welcome the break for some lively conversation. Sam called her close to him for a hug, and Erin touched his warm face with the outside of her glass of ice water. He didn’t like it, so Erin reminded him that if he didn’t like something to tell her to stop it; so he said it, "Stop it". Ha! We discovered that Sam doesn’t have a favorite car, but has loved all the vehicles he has already had, that he remembers scaring off some burglars from Erin’s car several years ago, and was unsure of what car Erin was driving at the moment. His vision therapist has been doing some good things that have made a noticeable and immediate impact in his behaviors. He turns his head more in both directions, and seems to focus better when talking directly to you. One very exciting thing is that he initiates prayer on his own behalf, and when Wendy asked him who was healing him, he responded, "The Lord". His doctor visits have all been positive as of late, and the dreaded infections have been kept at bay. He is both patient and impatient; anxious but relaxed, stoic, but lighthearted. He is loved deeply by all, and returns that love with interest….