Life Changers

Sue S. - All

To all who assisted me in my recovery. I am writing to let you know what a great experience I had at Kingston. I arrived on Monday evening December 30. I had fusion back surgery on December 27, 2019 and pretty much wanted to die. I was in so much pain I just wanted to lie in my bed. That didn’t happen because two days later I was visited by Paul with PT. He assessed me and talk to me about the game plan. As I was listening to him all I could think of is this isn’t going to work. I didn’t want to go to a rehab center in the first place but my family insisted and to make them happy I said OK reluctantly.

So here is this very tall man telling me what to expect. Great, I thought. All I wanted was the drugs to keep me from the pain and to help me sleep. Again that didn’t happen. So two days later off I go to PT as well as OT. I suffered through it for that first week. I will say that the people were more than just a physical/occupational therapist. They were comforting, kind, compassionate and concerned and seemed to understand what I was experiencing. Some days I will go back to my room and cry. I know a lot of my emotions came from the fact that I lost my husband, Tony, in August 2019. He was so excited for me to have the surgery so that we could finally start doing things and getting back to living our lives. I had this pain for so many years which limited a lot of things we wanted to do. I walked crooked and would sit leaning to my right. I was always in so much pain. So I need to do this for Tony as well as myself.

I received a call from my daughter and she asked how things were going. She asked what kind of activities I was attending and I told her none. I wasn’t going to the cafeteria to you with others, I just stayed in my room. She told me to get off my butt, go eat with people and get to know them and she was going to check in with me the following day and she did. I made up my mind that night that I wasn’t going to get any better with this attitude, lying around, taking the pills and sleeping. So the next day I got up and went to both therapies with an open mind, went and ate with some very nice women and that they changed everything.

I prayed to God to help me through the pain and two days later the pain started to ease up. The therapy lessons were going really well. I loved it and started to look forward to working out with them. It wasn’t always easy with new techniques but I did it. When I started at Kingston, I could only walk about 13 feet with assistance. Each day it increased in by the third week I was walking about 900 to 1000 feet with a walker and 250 feet without a walker.

The first time that Brandy took me out into the hallway and told me that she wanted me to try to walk near the wall without my walker, I have to say that I was very scared. My safety net was not going to be there in my hands but there was a railing that I could grab onto if I needed it. She followed behind me and I did it. I was a little wobbly but with each try I did it a little better. Never did I think I would get to this point. Wow did that feel good to be upright again. I couldn’t believe it. I was actually feeling better, became stronger and I was standing up straight for the first time in a very long time. Another accomplishment under my belt. I need to mention also, that wearing the black brace every day is a comfort and makes me feel safe.

I started receiving compliments from other staff member saying how well I was doing, as well as the people in the cafeteria and even my new friends. I think some of them couldn’t believe it. With the continued support and encouragement I kept getting better. For the most part Brandy and Alyssa worked with me. We would laugh and I will try to tease with them every step of the way. I really became close to them. I certainly wouldn’t be where I am today without their help and everyone else that was a part of my recovery at Kingston.

My new home was assessed by Paul to make sure that it was safe for when I came home. I then got the news that I will be going home in another week. On Friday, January 24 I went home. It was such a great day but then it was so sad to leave everybody. We cried, hugged and I cried some more. I made so many friends like Rosie, I need a, Dee, Judy, Colleen and most importantly Brandy, Melissa, and Paul. I left feeling like a new person. Four weeks before this, I couldn’t walk, get out of bed, go to the bathroom or take a shower and now I am walking out with confidence.

Two weeks after I left Kingston, I went back to visit everyone. I walked in without my walker and had a great visit. Some of the people were not there but it was so good to be back as a visitor, not a patient. Thank you to all the therapists, nurses, aids and everyone else who is a part of my recovery. I will certainly tell everyone I know what a wonderful facility and experience I had.

Love to all.

Sue S.

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