On Christmas Eve, 2012 our son was born. What a wonderful Christmas present! After a healthy, normal pregnancy and to the amazement of many, Jeri naturally delivered our son. While the birth went exceptionally well, my wife struggled to regain her strength post-delivery and especially while nursing our little boy. Her condition worsened significantly during this time. Before the pregnancy she was able to cook meals, manage dishes, laundry and basic household chores, as well as safely manage her personal care generally without assistance. She was also riding close to 5 miles at a time on her stationary bike. She was devastated to discover that postpartum she wasn't even able to turn the peddles fast enough for the bike to turn on. While Jeri has thankfully improved since that experience (she is excited to have biked a couple miles recently!) her progress has been slow going. Her current therapy has allowed her to make some progress with handling daily tasks but she still requires quite a bit of help. She also fell twice a couple months ago while transferring to and from her wheelchair. Jeri desperately needs continuous at-home therapy, especially constant access to a warm water pool, to allow her to recover to pre-childbirth strength and independence. We are optimistic though that a therapy pool will help her recover even beyond where she was two years ago!
Any amount of funding will be greatly appreciated! Our most immediate need is to fund the installation of a warm water therapy pool in the house for daily use, summer and winter. An incline stairlift to allow her safe access to the pool in our basement and constructing a single room around the pool are also needed. The room around the pool necessarily needs to be finished (with proper ventilation) to prevent moisture from the pool growing mold in the house. My wife has always felt her best in water and was even on a swim team for many years as a child (although not competitive). Being in water allows her to move in ways that are impossible on land. In addition to water therapy being perfect for helping Jeri regain her strength and independence it will also provides a huge emotional and mental boost for her! For many years she has dreamed of having a therapy pool but we didn't think it was something we could manage. With her recent decline though we really need to make her dream a reality!
- Ryan Kirkpatrick
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