So much for the spa days! My mother cracked a vertebrae just two weeks ago and they’ve already moved her over to boot camp. If you thought they might give her some slack for being in her late eighties, think again. She’s up, dressed, breakfasted and downstairs at the gym by 9am every morning, throwing balls, pushing pedals and doing sprints (that is, getting in and out of a chair and walking across the room), all of this while wearing a brace that by all appearances was designed circa 1400. It’s a vest that wraps around the torso with a metal bar going up the center of the back and a Y-shaped piece in the front, which actually gives sort of a wonder- bra affect (lift and support!), so it’s not all bad. It’s back to the room for lunch, but then out again for a group session with other in- patients who are equally excited about their new regime. But you won’t find any slackers in this place, not with Sargeant Cassandra on the hall! She gives it to you straight on admission–you do what you’re told here. No whining allowed on her watch! I doubt if there’s much problem with that, however, since there’s only one way from this place to home–and that’s by getting better. Other options are pretty much limited to the no-frills nursing home or the funeral parlor. It’s definitely no picnic, but you won’t find any of us complaining. Without all of this, the physical support, the physical and occupational therapies, the encouragement that recovery is in sight, Mom would not be able to get her life back. So all of this is exactly what has to happen. The good news is, if we’re lucky and things keep going in the current direction–she will! There’s a lot of talk about health care these days and who’s paying–and I’m not about to go there–except to say that we are all extremely grateful for Medicare, and this amazing (even if not much fun!) place that is providing the path to Jeanne’s full recovery! Boot Camp? Bring it on!