by Brian Baez, Caregiver Liaison
I get it! You're committed to your aphasia recovery. You and your loved one have decided to devote xamount of hours every day for therapy. You eat, sleep and breathe therapy. After all, what harm can it do? This is the wrong question. Instead ask "how much good is pushing this hard going to do?" Yes, you should absolutely take therapy seriously and do as much as you can, but the point is there needs to be time for you to let the mind rest, and to not focus on aphasia.
Knowing when to take a break from therapy is essential to success. What were some of the activities that you or your loved one enjoyed before? Even if you don't have the ability to do the same types of activities you previously enjoyed, the time away from the therapy table will prove to be just as valuable as the time at the table. It can be anything, even a nap. Sleep is necessary for healing and processing of new information. The idea of having a therapy respite isn't just for the one recovering.
This break from aphasia therapy isn't just for the one with aphasia, it's also for the caregivers. Finding the time to do the things that take your mind of therapy will all the difference in the way that you approach therapy itself. If you find yourself feeling that therapy is a chore, or frustrations are preventing your success, step away. Your emotional fortitude is needed! I know for myself, I need to step back when I feel I'm running low on patience. Finding time to quiet the mind, or completely zone out will bring you back with a renewed sense of optimism.