I am very happy to report that my dad has definately turned a corner on his journey of recovery.
At the end of April 2015 when my dad had his heart attack, it really knocked him sideways and changed him from an independent, outgoing, confident, happy go lucky man, into a frail and dependent individual.
As a daughter I found this sudden change very worrying and I was left thinking about the possibility that my dad may not recover. Along with the diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease 6 months later, this has been a very worrying and exhausting year.
What a difference a year makes:
One year on things are finally looking up, we are still on a continuing journey of recovery with every day that passes, but I am finally starting to see my dad slowly recovering, he is showing more of an interest in the simple things he always enjoyed, such as his garden. It may be the lovely warm and sunny weather we have been enjoying lately which has given my dad some inspiration to get out there and start doing little bits in his garden, but whatever it is I am so happy to see my old dad in there somewhere. . .
He is taking more of an interest in his wellbeing, he is not suffering from the breathlessness that stopped him in his tracks this time last year. His appetite has increased, his weight has been maintained, he is smiling more and making conversation so much more than he has done in the last year. His mischievous side is rearing its head again, much to the amusement of his grandchildren and great granddaughters.
It is so nice to see his confidence and energy coming back and seeing him doing more than he was, although he still suffers with dizziness and balance issues due to the Parkinson’s, this is something that may become easier with an increase in his medication. Time will tell!
Taking the timeout from my career to look after my dad was not an easy decision, becoming his carer was never a role I would have envisaged at all, but at the time I couldn’t really see an alternative.
I am happy to have been there for my dad, I know I have helped him in so many ways and he has felt secure in the knowledge that I’m there for him always. I’ve been pointing him in the right direction to assist in his recovery, from his cardiac therapy group to his follow up hospital appointments, advising him on the services that were available for him, and advising him of the potential benefits each of these services will provide for him. All provided by the NHS, in particular Community Health Services.
I would certainly advise anyone in this position to take advantage of the services provided by the community health teams. They have been influential in the rehabilitation process my dad has been through, and is still involved in today.
Therapy Sessions – Speech & Language
Dad is now working with the speech & language therapist, and fter his initial assessment he is now following a plan of action which is assisting him in his efforts to regain his vocal range, which has been affected by the heart attack and Parkinson’s. He looks forward to these sessions, as they have given him a goal to aim for and that is to regain his singing voice (prior to his illness he was a member of the Irish Guards Choir for over 10 years)
It would be wonderful to see my dad singing again one day, and now I can see his efforts are starting to pay off. .
Just the other day, without any prompting, my dad broke out into song, which was a lovely surprise, it’s just that we were walking into a department store at the time! Very entertaining 🙂