As Written by Patient, Clark J. Krystek, 68.
I turned a corner. And there she was. Nose to nose with me! Her eyes opened wide as she stared. I smiled; I hadn’t seen her for a long time.
“Wow! When I was here last you were in a wheelchair!”
I stood leaning on my walker. “I know. Isn’t it neat?” It was a success I never dreamed was possible. I had lost my ability to walk. Confined to a wheelchair, I listened to what I was told and did exercises to try to come back.
In the beginning I wasn’t sure what I had or what had happened. I was told I argued with people, called them names and was out of control, not normal behavior for me. My wife looked at me as if I was a very scary person. She said she was fighting not to commit me. Needless to say, it would be a very long way back. Even at that time I believed I’d been in an auto accident. Only later did I discover that I was reacting to the anesthesia.
I went to speech therapy. I didn’t realize that I had lost so many subtle things like forming words into sentences when I wrote. There were any number of things that weren’t right, like I couldn’t access words to make my speech smooth and coherent. I worked on word games, crossword puzzles, and large lists of words to match and use.
Was the ability to write or speak lost? I love to write novels and short stories. Would I be able to write them again?
She gave me some things to do including matching words, writing, crossword puzzles or speaking in front of others. Eventually, my skills started to return. I am writing this memo on the Dragon software I have on my computer. My verbal words are converted and written in a memo on the computer. I conquered that while I was here.
This is probably the largest part of the program. It’s for dexterity and physical movement. It involves teaching our hands to write again, to play games of skill, and improves you reactions and thoughts. Among the things we did were placing pegs in the correct shaped hole, place rings around the proper size pegs, throwing beanbags into baskets and more difficult manual tasks.
This is also where we learn to play games again, manipulate cards and not be embarrassed by our mistakes.