The good thing about Jake’s gradual decline over the past two years has been that as new issues pop up, I have time to assess them and come up with a solution. Like the diapers, and the cloth diaper inserts we moved to (so as not to fill up all the landfills). Or how to keep him safe(r) in the car or solutions for nighttime meatball production. While he has gradually declined, I have been able to gradually solve our problems.
Him going fully paralyzed overnight has not been easy. Mostly to watch. Gradual decline is not something you measure or really see, you coast along with it. But with him losing his leg use overnight, I have had avoid ‘poor Jake’ and instead step up my game to make his life as easy as possible.
- I have to carry him a lot more. Which means I need to come up with solutions for how he can do some things (like go down steps, especially to the outside) on his own. I’m looking into having some ramps made for him so he can remain independent.
- Wonky-but-still-upright Jake needs rugs and lily pads and yoga mats. Dragging Jake needs hardwood floors. While I can pull up all the rugs, Jake is used to targeting them so he is not getting that he needs to drag on non-carpeted areas. Why can’t he understand the words I’m speaking?! I’m flailing my arms around like air traffic control and he just stares at me, laughing in his soul.
- Dragging Jake’s diapers come off. Really easily. Like within a minute. I ordered a drag bag to hopefully help with this.
- He has been reluctant to eat while sitting down. I have a raised feeder for him so that is not the issue. So far, I have to hold him up while he eats. I am trying to, once he is heavily invested in eating dinner, lower him down so he realizes he can eat while sitting. I may also look for something to support his underside (a pillow of some sort) while he eats.
- When meatball production starts, I need to be there to hold him upright. Seriously, I need to be there or clean-up will rob me of my sanity. I ordered a couple harnesses so I can remain standing while assisting him to stand. This morning the factory opened at 2am and it took him 25 min to go. We bonded.
But to be honest, if I was going to go into sudden-hind-leg-paralysis with someone, I’m glad it’s Jake. He is so brave and he tries and works on his new mobility with such intensity. I just love his perseverance. I’m proud to be his mom!
We go to the neurologist tomorrow. We will keep you posted!
“I think if you feed me bacon, my legs will come off strike”.