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Sunday, February 5, 2012

Discovering My Inner Drill Sergeant

Seems these past couple of months, it has been really hard to get Bob motivated and I can't say it's been an easy task to keep myself motivated either. It's definitely hard to stay positive, to keep trying, when you're experiencing little to no results. We've been working hard, for 8 months now, without the help of outside therapists, doing our own Pink House version of Outpatient Rehab. This consists of approximately four hours each afternoon of leg exercises, arm exercises, tongue/mouth exercises and speech exercises and is capped off with a daily walk at the rail.

For awhile, back around November, Bob was progressing beautifully.

Then, all the progress seemed to come to a screeching halt. A long plateau. Or worse, a bit of backsliding... a regressing instead of progressing. 

And all the cajoling, pleading and/or threatening did not seem to be working, anymore. Bob seemed to be finding more and more excuses to not get up and walk that rail. The biggest excuse being he "has to pee" and I tell you, this guy can spend two hours or more trying to pee. And no amount of begging/crying/pleading would convince him to let go of that urinal. Which really put a damper in our schedule.

For awhile, I was at my wit's end as to what to do. Ultimately, I sort of gave up, you know, an ok, whatever, spend all day peeing, see if I care! kind of attitude. Thinking maybe he'd just come around on his own. But he didn't...

So, I've had to steal myself and dig down deep into my somewhat dwindling reserves and discover my Inner Drill Sergeant.

Yes, and put my boot down, so to speak.

So, now it's AT-TEN-SHUN BOB! What? You got to pee? Well, you have five minutes. FIVE MINUTES! Then, we're up! And if you need to, YOU CAN PEE AT THE RAIL! 

HUP TWO THREE FOUR!

Yes, it was time to pull out some bigger guns.  

Like: WHAT DO YOU MEAN, YOU'RE DONE? GIVE ME FOUR MORE! FOUR MORE!

HUP TWO THREE FOUR!

Believe me, this has not been easy for me. I am not drill sergeant material. I am, at least I like to think I am, a nice person. I am, probably, way to soft for this job.

The first time I tried this tactic, Bob looked at me as if I'd lost my mind. Like he didn't believe it. Like he thought I was joking. But I said, "No kidding. No more Mr. Nice Guy. I'm going to whip you into shape even if it kills you and I both! I AM NOW YOUR DRILL SERGEANT! AND THIS IS BOOT CAMP! BA HA HA!"

I was worried this whole technique might backfire. That Bob would just simply refuse to cooperate. But weirdly enough, he has become resigned to it. He now does his therapy, once again daily, without complaint. Well, without as much complaining...

And I have pushed him from an all time low of 9 times at the rail, up to 20 times in the past two months.

So HUP TWO THREE FOUR!

At ease.

6 comments:

Linda said...

Diane...
We really do love and appreciate our drill sergeants, even when we can't tell them how much.
Hup two, three, four!

Anonymous said...

Some times we have to revert to Tough Love for the betterment of the one we love. You may not like being the drill sergeant, and it's out of your character, but it's what you have to do. It seems over the past year, you've always found the key to motivating Bob. I love your tenacity. You never give up Diane. Hugs, Dan

Anonymous said...

I agree with Dan, I admire you kiddo, keep at it. You amaze me. Love Patricia P.S. I laughed out loud...Thanks.

Barb Polan said...

You have been giving everything you have for the past year - it's an amazing thing to have watched.

Rebecca said...

If Bob were in a nursing home he would have to lie in his urine soaked bed linens until they could get two aides free to do what you do alone. You are amazing.

Nikki said...

Like Rebecca said, you're amazing! I work with developmentally disabled kids every day and I'm not sure I could do what you do!