I went through the same routine day in and day out. Each time that I was ready to throw in the towel, the recreational therapist came and took me away from it all. They had outings each week. I looked forward to spending time anywhere away from the hospital. Many patients and therapists went on these outings.
Eric and I went on one outing and some man began walking toward us and asked me how I was. I did not have a clue as to who this man was but I said, “Fine”. He then said to Eric, “Hello, I’m Carroll, Susan’s father.” I hadn’t seen the man in nine years so was a little bit shocked to say the least.
I always thought that my bad temper was a very negative attribute but it turned out to be just the opposite. Because of this temper, physical therapy got one hundred and ten percent. Many thought that I would spend the rest of my days in a wheelchair and would never be self-sufficient. This brain stem injury made me very spastic. Spasticity results when one muscle tries to work but the opposite muscle kicks in and prevents it from working properly. This caused my right hand to be shaky while my left one didn’t work at all and to top it off, I could not walk and my speech was extremely slow and slurry. The main problem was the fact that I always laughed and could not cry but my physical problems were so enormous that I couldn't waste time worrying about mental problems. I was still living in a dream world. Waking up and facing reality would be one of longest and hardest battles of my life.
It was April 17 and everyone decided that it was time for me to go home. I hated the hospital setting but it was necessary because all of the therapists needed were right there. I expected to be able to walk out of the hospital. The possibility of never walking again was staring me square in the face. If it were possible to cry, I would have.