Frank had a physical therapy session planned, though he was confused about the time and refused to accept that his appointment wasn't in another 20 minutes. We went to the gym and played ball games until the therapist arrived, who was very pleased to see Frank so enthusiastic.
When she asked how Frank was feeling he replied 'het gaat' (roughly translatable as 'so so') but when she asked him what was wrong he completed his sentence with 'het gaat goed, erg goed.' ('it's going well, very well'.) Now that the tube is no longer in his throat he speaks much more and with greater ease, but it seems he still doesn't always finish his sentences.
Without the tube and exhausting nausea it caused him, Frank is now much more energetic. If Frank is fighting a battle to regain control of his body, he has proven once again the old truth that an army marches on its stomach and won't desert its general if the food is good.
As we started phsyical therapy, his therapist was amazed by how much he'd improved. She was so impressed by Frank's progress and how hard he was trying, that she proposed a task they had not tried before: standing. So far Frank has trained using his arm and upper body, so standing may sounds like a few bridges too far for now, but the therapist had a trick for this: She explained to Frank that she had a machine with which she could lift him out of the chair, positioning his legs against a hard surface so he could now move forward, and lifting his back up with cables, while Frank would have to support his upper body with his arms. Frank's opinion on the matter was simple: Let's do it.
So the machine was brought in and the experiment began. The therapist was very hesitant about moving too fast but in Frank's opinion things could not go fast enough. Urging his therapist on, he soon found himself seated in the cables that would lift him, took hold of the arms supports and .. behold! Frank was standing! This required an enormous amount of strength on his part. He was swaying every which way and struggling to keep his back straight. You may think that standing is all about using your legs, but upper body balance and control is just as important. Today Frank make a colossal effort to keep himself upright and after a few minutes he asked to be placed back in his chair. In the future, Frank will have more sessions to practice standing in this machine.
After this venture, one would think Frank was exhausted but he was in fact still quite lively. When I asked whether he was tired his face lit up and he announced enthusiastically 'I've got energy! What do you have in mind?'. I proposed several things but he rejected them all. He'd already decided what he wanted to do: watch a movie about Atilla the Hun. He spend another 30 minutes in his wheelchair and when the nurses helped him back in bed, I wasn't surprised to see him falling asleep instantly.