Libby Lehman Updates from Caring Bridge — 8-14-13

Libby LehmanUpdate for 8-6-13

Libby made a major breakthrough in her recovery yesterday.

This morning’s update from Caring Bridge has the good news:

Ellen’s husband Bill Askey emailed – It’s Monday morning. I am just leaving the facility. I watched most of the OT and the first part of speech therapy. She did great. Got in and out of bed with a little help from Bola and the therapist. Speech was going well. Then Libby moved her left hand. Thumb first then index finger and finally her whole hand. Amy nearly fell out of her chair. Said she had seen no movement before today. Libby moved it several more times. She did the rest of speech well. Little lapses of attention but always coming back to the task. It was a good visit.

Wow! Libby is left handed so we are thrilled to see movement from this side. Way to go Libby & thanks for sharing Bill.

Way to go, Libby! Keep up the good work! We’re all doing a happy, happy dance for your progress.

Update for 8-7-13

Libby Lehman Wedding Portrait cropped

Today Libby improved in physical therapy from yesterday. She is struggling with balance and leaning forward while sitting, but today she made some progress according to Pia, her physical therapist. She is still learning to swallow a tiny bit of water, which must be mastered before she can eat regular food and be taken off the feeding tube. Verbally, she continues to improve. She told Doris, Lester’s sister, that she wants a chocolate chip cookie and wants to take a shower! Sounds reasonable to me!
Thought you might enjoy seeing a photo of Libby as a bride in 1970. Isn’t she beautiful!

Hooray for Libby! “Chocolate chip cookie and . . . a shower.” Sounds like she has her priorities pretty straight.

Update for 8-12-13

Lester said Libby had a somewhat slow start to the day, but once she was up and dressed she talked to him, with some understandable words. Ellen’s visit overlapped the session with Occupational Therapist Lenora who is working with Libby’s left arm and leg to try to stimulate a little “more action” from that side. She also worked with Bola and others on getting Libby to and from the wheelchair and bed. Progress is being made, and Libby’s contribution in the process is growing but still minimal, so far. Libby smiles when we remind her of how much more and how much better she is doing than just a week ago.

During Susan’s afternoon visit Libby snoozed away in a peaceful nap. Aww. Lester said Libby was talking later in the afternoon and all is well. Sarah is on her way to visit this evening after work. We are so blessed to have so many willing and loving caregivers for our sweet Libby!!!

Update for 8-14-13

Libby continues to work on recovering basic skills.

Lester reported Libby started off the day in high gear, with clear words and a cheerful attitude. She continued to have a good day in OT and PT, as she pedaled away with her right leg on the cycling machine.
Sometimes you’re up!

About noon Libby’s mood pendulum began to swing the other way, with moderate cooperation with Amy in Speech Therapy, including a few sips of cranberry juice and one spoonful of unidentified red soup, then a couple of bites of mashed potatoes and vanilla pudding, topped off with a smidge of vanilla ice cream. She made a funny face at the ice cream, but I identified the problem by asking, “what’s the matter, it’s not Blue Bell?” She quickly and emphatically said “No!” We should be able to remedy that problem in the future, at least.

Libby seemed to be very frustrated and sad this afternoon, and Amy confirmed our suspicions that with Libby’s increased comprehension of her situation comes increased awareness of the difficulties she faces. Lester talked to the doctor yesterday about some anti-anxiety medicine to help even out her moods.

In the meantime, Libby enjoyed flipping the pages (and I mean flipping them with vigor with her right hand) of a magazine and quilt book. Bored with that she began fidgeting with a paper place mat until I began to draw on it with a pen. She is not able yet to hold a pen, but she seemed fascinated with my creative process, even though my artistic talent is nothing to crow about. But her interest spurred me on, and we shared a pleasant time drawing and then letting her fold the paper over and over – whatever it takes to get her mind off her sadness.

Libby briefly enjoyed seeing the photos of the little baby Ashley Elizabeth when Doris came to visit, but she kept going back to a sad expression on her face. She gave me a half-hearted smile when I said “goodbye”. It seemed all she could manage, and I appreciated her effort and admire her courage as she faces her challenges.
Sometimes You’re Down…



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