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Dr. Mabuse
Septic Fiend

Sweden
9666 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2005 :  20:03:18   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Dr. Mabuse an ICQ Message Send Dr. Mabuse a Private Message
Derek is up, and made his first post at Skepticality Forum.

Dr. Mabuse - "When the going gets tough, the tough get Duct-tape..."
Dr. Mabuse whisper.mp3

"Equivocation is not just a job, for a creationist it's a way of life..." Dr. Mabuse

Support American Troops in Iraq:
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13458 Posts

Posted - 12/03/2005 :  17:19:16   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message
Derek posts in the Forum 11/30/05

Also, Derek just sent a response to a PM that I sent to him months ago. Nothing important really but it is the coolest reply I have ever received…

Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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Siberia
SFN Addict

Brazil
2322 Posts

Posted - 12/04/2005 :  06:29:51   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Siberia's Homepage  Send Siberia an AOL message  Send Siberia a Yahoo! Message Send Siberia a Private Message
That's fabulous! Glad to see him on his way to recovery.

"Why are you afraid of something you're not even sure exists?"
- The Kovenant, Via Negativa

"People who don't like their beliefs being laughed at shouldn't have such funny beliefs."
-- unknown
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13458 Posts

Posted - 12/05/2005 :  18:59:38   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message
Derek update 10:00am 12/05/05
quote:
Swoopy:
Wow, it's been too quiet over here. But when life starts to assume some sense of normalcy and panic and worry subsides, the urge to post on every little thing doesn't seem as pressing.

We're also in a pattern, somewhat, of "lather, rinse, repeat" days which I suspect some people wouldn't find entirely interesting. And yet, just knowing that things are fine, is important too. So here I am to report a little of what a typical day has been like over the past month.

Derek was discharged from North Fulton in-patient rehab on November 9th. It's only been about a month, but it seems like much longer. And only three months since Derek had his bleed. But again, remembering that it's only been about 30 days since he's been home is another surprising indication of how much Derek is still progressing.

When he first came home, he could manage all the stairs in the house (and there are many) about once a day, and do one flight from the family room to get to the kitchen or from kitchen up a flight to the bedroom then again maybe twice more. At the end of the day on going up to bed, he would sometimes need to take long pauses between steps and really hold the handrail and support himself on the stairwell wall to make those last few stairs. There was a lot of grunting and groaning involved too from sore muscles.

He was under strict orders not to move from one floor of the house to another, which of course he did from time to time anyway. Thankfully we've only had one fall, and it was a couple of days after he first came home, and wasn't at all serious. Derek has always regularly stumbled on the stairs anyway, so that isn't anything new. Something about big feet and small stair treads.

These days, though he's a little slower in the evening, Derek goes up and down the stairs as much as he feels like it, and since he likes to be wherever anyone else happens to be (this is also not new behavior), this means he's up and down a lot. He doesn't use the handrail for support really, just more of a guide and sometimes not at all (though we encourage it).

When we left the hospital we received paperwork for a temporary handicapped parking tag so that when we went places, we could park closer to entrances. We haven't gotten to the DMV to get it, and thus far, he's been fine walking wherever we go. The time we spend in stores walking around is limited, but is usually more than long enough to do whatever errand we go to do. He went with us on Saturday to Sam's Club to get a couple of things, and to go there on a weekend day during the holiday season is no small feat.

His therapy at Shepherd Center is going extremely well. We have a family meeting scheduled for this afternoon in which all of his therapists and his case manager will be present, to give us an update on his progress from their point of view. All of the feedback we've been getting has been excellent thus far, and the results, especially of his speech therapy are really evident.

Part of his therapy includes going out to stores and going places for lunch, budgeting funds, buying things, calculating change and staying focused on the task at hand. The biggest challenge for Derek on that front, is the last part. Occasionally he thinks he needs to do something, or find someone, and instead of waiting for them, he'll go in search of whomever he's looking for. The instinct to do stuff is good, but he doesn't always remember to follow directions, and so that's the part that needs work. This is part of his short-term memory issue, which is again greatly improved. When he came home from the hospital Derek couldn't remember what he just said or did, or what someone else said to him or asked him to do, in a five minute time span.

These days, though he needs to be reminded sometimes, he does remember things that were talked about minutes ago, hours ago, days ago, a week ago. He can recall what he did during his day, and elaborate on it. He can remember things he was asked to do by someone else, and remind us about them. These are all things that he works on in his Life Skills therapy classes.

In his physical therapy, Derek is basically now taking part in an exercise regimen that involves 20-30 minutes at a time working on the recumbent bike and on the treadmill. He says that the therapists tell him that they're going to make him sweat, and having picked him up from class right after his physical therapy, I can tell you that they do. It's really increasing his stamina, and keeping his weight down too.

The biggest challenge on the physical front is that the medications Derek is taking to combat his blood pressure have side effects that involve dizziness and drowsiness. The dizziness isn't usually a factor, but the drowsiness definitely is. We're going to be discussing what we might be able to change with his medications, that will alleviate the problem at least a little. We have a blood pressure monitor and we take his pressures morning and evening, before and after medications too. So far, his numbers have been excellent, often at times better than mine and Susan's. We've actually discovered that Susan is more than a little hypertensive herself, and she will be talking to her doctor about that soon.

The biggest component of Derek's therapy is for his speech. The therapists recognized early on that it was the area where he needed the most work, and have stacked up extra speech therapy slots in his day for just that reason. Derek comes home with flash cards with more and more challenging multi-syllabic words to work on, and with practice, he masters each one. Cognitively he's probably about 85%, but his speech is about 75% and that frustrates him. He knows what he wants to say, and tries to say it at the rate he feels he should be able to. Almost always, when words come out mangled or incorrectly pronounced, if he takes a moment and repeats himself more slowly and succinctly, he does just fine. Derek doesn't do anything slowly, and so that's a tendency that he's working to overcome. He speaks of his own accord, and contributes to conversations and comments on stuff we're watching or doing, in the same manner he always has done. More of skeptical Derek is rearing it's head every day, especially when we're watching the news.

My days of slacking off, hanging out downtown at Borders, drinking coffee and using the wi-fi, have become infrequent due to the very cool carpooling arrangement that began last week. Co-workers of Derek's have been picking him up from the house in the morning and taking him to a drop off point where Derek is picked up by Shepherd Pathways transportation, and they take him the rest of the way downtown to begin his day. The drop-off point is right around the corner from Derek's office, so it's fairly convenient for those co-workers who already live near us.

Friends have been offering for awhile and we finally felt that it was time to start taking them up on it. I still go in to the center to pick Derek up in the afternoon, and that allows us to keep in touch with goings on at the Center and Derek gets home earlier than he would if he took the shuttle home. It's been great to have mornings and early afternoons to run errands and get things done that need doing around the house. So big thanks go out to Sean and Pat and Scott and Dan, and the rest of the transportation team; it's a big help.

And, lastly, Derek has finally started spending more time at the computer of his own volition. All of

Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13458 Posts

Posted - 12/24/2005 :  18:42:44   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message
Holiday Update 12/24/05

quote:
Swoopy:
Just a quick holiday hello from our family to yours.

As we mentioned, we were all looking forward to Derek's parents coming to Atlanta to visit us all for the holidays.

Unexpectedly, Derek's father suffered a heart attack a week ago and underwent emergency surgery. Fortunately he is doing extremely well, and his hospital stay was brief, but this made it impossible for Rich and Bobbi to travel for the holidays. This was of course a huge disappointment for Derek, as he was worried about his Dad and had been looking forward to seeing him, more than anything.

With Derek doing so well these days, and since Christmas falls on a weekend this year, we decided that we would make the trek to New Jersey so we could all be together for the holidays after all.

We left Atlanta after Derek's day of rehab on Thursday and arrived around 8 in the morning on Friday. We were greatful for the lack of traffic (after leaving Atlanta at rush hour of course) and good weather for the entire drive. Susan stayed awake for a marathon amount of time and shouldered most of the driving, I made sure we were navigating properly, kept up on the snacks and entertainment portion and Derek rested quietly in the back, napping on and off.

Big thanks go out to our friends Rich and Cassie for watching the Remy dog on this busy holiday weekend. It means a lot that they of course didn't think twice about saying yes, and even offered to help with plane fare so we wouldn't have to drive. But of course we drove because Derek isn't cleared for air travel yet.

Everyone is really enjoying seeing Derek, and are of course amazed that a guy who was loitering on death's doorstep only a few months ago, and even a month ago had very limited speech, is now walking around and having long conversations as if nothing happened.

On the rehab front, this coming week will be Derek's last week of full time rehab at Shepherd Center Pathways. We'll be having a meeting towards the end of the week to discuss his part time rehab schedule, and how that will integrate with his reintroduction, slowly, back into his office environment. His co-workers have been amazing, helping drive Derek to the morning bus service that Shepherd offers for patients that live farther away, and they have been talking about the goings on at his office and bringing him back up to speed there. I think he's excited about getting to this point, because he is more than ready to begin resuming a more normal way of living. This of course, is all happening at the speed of light. Derek is far ahead of the curve in regards to his improvement, and to still be undergoing lots of therapy even a year from now, isn't at all unusual. So that he's already moving away from rigorous therapy and back into regular life, speaks volumes about how well he's really doing.

We'll be returning home on Monday, likely with a throng of others, and back to work and rehab on Tuesday. It is a happy holiday for all of us, just to be able to have Derek with us. To have him living and functioning on any level would have been wonderful, but to have him operating well above that, and being his old self is something I don't think any of us imagined would be happening so soon. It's the best present any of us will ever have.

Our best goes out to everyone. We hope that your holidays are happy, and that you and all of your loved ones are safe, warm and as near to you as they can be.

The Colanduno Family


Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 12/24/2005 :  19:09:21   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message
The news gets better and better. I look forward to seeing Derek back visiting us in here again.


"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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skepticality
Skeptic Friend

USA
105 Posts

Posted - 01/05/2006 :  15:31:56   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit skepticality's Homepage Send skepticality a Private Message
Hi all! :)

I missed a lot over the past few weeks, I am sorry that I didn't come and post sooner. It has been nuts over here with me, and now that I am discharged from the 'all-day' program at the re-hab hospital now, so that gave me a little more time to sit down at the computer and play some catch-up on a few weeks of my missed time! :)

What has been the big news since I was missing from the world? :)

Love,

Derek C.

Derek Colanduno
host - skepticality
http://www.skepticality.com/
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13458 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  18:45:22   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message
Wow, I came to post this, and saw the above post! I don't know how I missed it. Welcome back Derek!!!!

Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
25976 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  21:01:00   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Kil

...and saw the above post!
And since "the above post" hadn't been approved for public viewing until I saw your post, Kil, you probably confused a few people. (I don't know how I missed Derek's post, either.)
quote:
Wow, I came to post this...
What's really funny is that they've captioned it with "Derek gives death the finger..." and one of the previous versions of that t-shirt was this!

Oh, for everybody else, the back of Derek's shirt is this:


- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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Dr. Mabuse
Septic Fiend

Sweden
9666 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  22:43:11   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Dr. Mabuse an ICQ Message Send Dr. Mabuse a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Dave W.
Oh, for everybody else, the back of Derek's shirt is this:

Derek is showing it over here.

Dr. Mabuse - "When the going gets tough, the tough get Duct-tape..."
Dr. Mabuse whisper.mp3

"Equivocation is not just a job, for a creationist it's a way of life..." Dr. Mabuse

Support American Troops in Iraq:
Send them unarmed civilians for target practice..
Collateralmurder.
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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  02:23:53   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message
There's nane that's blest of human kind,
But the cheerful and the gay, man,

Here's a bottle and an honest friend!
What wad ye wish for mair, man?
Wha kens, before his life may end,
What his share may be o' care, man?

Then catch the moments as they fly,
And use them as ye ought, man:
Believe me, happiness is shy,
And comes not aye when sought, man.


Welcome back, Derek!




"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  03:28:59   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
Hooray! Hooray! Welcome back to the world.
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2006 :  21:33:37   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message
Derek, I may not know you well (or vice versa), but if this lot vouches for you, I'm with 'em! As a stroke veteran, I hope your experiences with (let me guess) physical, occupational, and speech therapists is smooth and doesn't fluster you. (They drove me nuts, though I have the very highest respect for them, and I realize that's their job.) Get even more well soon!


Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.
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Siberia
SFN Addict

Brazil
2322 Posts

Posted - 02/11/2006 :  09:31:14   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Siberia's Homepage  Send Siberia an AOL message  Send Siberia a Yahoo! Message Send Siberia a Private Message
Huzzah! Welcome back!

"Why are you afraid of something you're not even sure exists?"
- The Kovenant, Via Negativa

"People who don't like their beliefs being laughed at shouldn't have such funny beliefs."
-- unknown
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13458 Posts

Posted - 02/12/2006 :  08:25:44   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message
Well, it seems that Derek is doing much much better. He has been appearing on the latest Skepticality shows/podcasts. I want to thank Swoopy for the updates and for allowing me to re-post them here at SFN. Derek, with Susan and Swoopy around a person could not ask for better support. Their love for you is obvious. You are a very lucky man.

Derek, you gave us all a scare. Please don't do that again…

We're looking forward to more of your insightful posts here at SFN

And thanks to all who contributed with their thoughts and concerns for Derek in this thread.

And with that I am closing this thread down.

Thanks everyone!!!

Kil

Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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