"I'm trying," she said softly, "but PT (physical therapy) is very hard. Perhaps this is easier for people who jogged all their lives? They expect me to be like Jack La Lane!"
I try to be a little bit sympathetic and a little bit the "stern" niece as I as encourage her to keep trying. "This would be hard for even Jack La Lane," I respond, pretty sure that La Lane was a chain of gyms back in my youth?
"They all seem to forget that I had shingles and now I have shingles pain! They say that's the worst pain you can have. I didn't believe that before, but now I do. It's stabbing burning pain just like they say on TV."
I try to be a little bit sympathetic and a little bit the "stern" niece as I as encourage her to keep trying. "You have to ask for pain meds when you need them," I remind, "and you have to be stronger to go home."
"I keep missing Days of Our Lives," she says, this time smiling, but I'm pretty sure my life is a Soap Opera these days. Maybe you should write a book about this?"
I too smiled realizing that I cannot "fix" any of my Aunt's problems, but I can listen to them I'm thinking that nonagenarians stuck in the rehab with a broken femur really just need to vent, just like we all do! Perhaps some sort of "happy hour" with music, fruity drinks and a chance to complain about the work would help?