Friday, April 10, 2009

Experiment Week 2 update

funniest quote this week (besides those uttered by our wonderful amazing inspiring participants):

S. (a research assistant) knocked on the door to relieve C. (another research assistant) who was participating in the CIAT (constraint-induced aphasia therapy) language games

C. says "Aw man..."

I loved it - she wanted to hang out more....loved it...we are having so much fun

I had a rough couple of days this week - A camera died on me, ~30 minutes of treatment went unrecorded, a tape was corrupted, etc. Roughness. Those things impact my research of course. But in the end, they are just a footnote in a document. The big picture is that therapy went great despite it all, participants made improvment, and we are having an impact. Who cares about the rest? It is important to remember I am doing this - not for a publication, not even for graduation requirements, but to help people, to change lives. Blips on the radar screen don't compare to #2 grabbing my hand and putting it to his face to say thank you, #0 bringing treats and buying us drinks everyday to express his gratitude, #1 making great strides and working hard on every sentence, and seeing #4 even make improvements despite how high functioning she is, and cheer us on, and cheat at games ;)

There is always drama in my life, in my family. Dramatic events have occurred recently that have definitely thrown a curveball - some handle it well, others don't. I keep asking myself - self, why aren't you more worried about this? self, why aren't you more upset about this? self, why aren't you stressed about this? Have you become unfeeling, emotionless?

Searching for the answer has led to this conclusion - I care, and deeply so. But I am honored, blessed to work with people every day who, in return for my therapeutic services, give me perspective and joy. For the most part, none of them can return to work, they are restricted to communicating with 1-2 people who will take the time to try and talk to them, they no longer talk on the phone or get on the computer, most avoid going out to eat or other recreation and leisure activities b/c they aren't designed for people who have difficulty communicating, many can't read or write anymore, some can't walk, spouses have left, friends and family avoid, etc....Those are real problems. And they are hopeful and motivated and generous despite it all, and a joy to have in my life. Perspective.

Love it. Love what I do. Love them. Love life.

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