In December of 2011, my Father suffered a debilitating stroke which left him with acute aphasia and paralysis on his right side. As part of his road to recovery, my Mother has brought him to The First Teaching Hospital of Tianjin University where he, at the time of this writing, is undergoing extensive stroke recovery treatments. This is her journal...

August 27

Yesterday at the Water-park was so nice. Peaceful and serene. Peter enjoyed himself and seemed more relaxed when we got back. I think we might go every Sunday.

Today Peter begins the hyperbaric chamber again. Another 10 sessions. I say "yippee" but that is not his sentiment. I think this is the image he has of me goading him about it.

August 28

Went to Carrefour, the big store, with Esther today. Poor Ashley is sick again and can't do anything. Esther told me she's too scared to go anywhere yet anyway. Esther is overwhelmed too but is getting a little bolder. On the way there, she remarked how hard it was to cross the street because the bikes don't pay any attention to the lights. I told her that when she is crossing, she should maintain an even pace so they can judge her speed and compensate their steering accordingly. She nodded. We were in the store for a while. On the way home, we walked halfway across a busy street to the center but she kept going. I had to pull her back from a car moving much too fast. She explained "I did like you said, I kept an even pace". Oh boy! You do have to cross in front of moving traffic sometimes but only if they are going slow and you have made eye contact with the driver. Poor Esther didn't get it. In all fairness, the crossings are ridiculous.

August 29

Peter is sick with a cold. The doctors have given him medication for it so I hope it doesn't develop into anything serious. He had his acupuncture but nothing else and took a long nap in the afternoon. At least he got out of going into the hyperbaric chamber today. Hope he gets over it quickly because Ruth called today and said she rented a bus and, on Sunday, plans take all all her clients to the section of the Great Wall that is here in Tianjin. That should really be interesting.

Tomorrow I go back to the police station to pick up my passport. That ought to be fun.

August 30

Went to the police station this morning and there's nothing to tell. Liu took the paperwork, the fee (hefty, of course) and came back within minutes with my extended visa passport. I didn't even see an official. I made it a bit lighter though by pretending to Liu that I didn't have the stamped papers with me. Freaked her out.

Peter is feeling better and went to physical therapy this morning. He's not 100% though so no chamber again. Guess we'll wait till Monday to start again because I understand it's most effective when done continuously.

He's still walking the length of the hall every day. It's clear he can't do this on his own yet as he is still too unstable but he doesn't need a lot of support anymore. Baby steps, baby steps, patience, patience. Aaarrrgh!

August 31

The pollution in China is legendary. There is an occasional day that is clear but most days we are encased in smog. This morning the sun was just a dim red bulb. Its hard not to keep staring at it, but I know that's dangerous. Here are some views from Peter's room. From a good day to a horrible day. (my hotel is on the far right, to the immediate left of the high rise under construction)

September 1

Well, it's September and it's still hot as anything. Humid too. We are not going to the Great Wall tomorrow after all because it is supposed to rain all day. Hope that cools things off. I learned we have been invited to a wedding here. Liu's daughter is getting married. What an experience that should be.

Peter is doing some of his speech lessons with Ashley now. He is very fond of her and enjoys seeing her learn. She is very sweet. Michelle feels good helping her too. They each have their own programs and are sharing them. I think it's good for both of them as they keep each other motivated.

Tomorrow rain all day, huh? Wonder what we'll do.

September 2

Didn't do anything. Napped. Sorry.