Yesterday, my Mary arrived. I stopped by the nursing home to visit my hysterically incapacitated Aunt Emily, who has come to believe that her back is broken and that she will die if she moves, even to feed herself. A man was putting heavy socks on her, and apparently he is the person in charge of physical therapy there.
"Roll over this way," he ordered. Emily frowned and got red in the face, but he rolled her over anyway, out of her dead-as-a-log position.
"Now you are going to sit up," he said. Emily began to sing, "I'm going to fall, I'm going to fall. . . ."
"Have I let you fall before?" he asked, and pulled her up into sitting position and sat her on the side of the bed. After another chorus of "I'm going to fall, I'm going to fall. . . ." (nothing about back pain, note) he made her stand up on her own legs and sit in a special rolling chair for transport to the physical therapy room. I have never been able to get her to do anything except I insisted that she break her dead-as-a-log act and wave to me when I visited, and this guy -- who's undoubtedly had a great deal of practice -- had her simi-mobile in short order. Most impressive. I think she might eventually recover enough to get out of nursing home if only to get away from the physical therapy