'I Want to be Relevant'

Published: April 30, 2013

Two months after his second stroke, Mark Dunham did his first load of laundry, one of the uncountable small steps toward recovery. For his wife, Heather, it meant considerably more than other life skills Dunham was recapturing – putting on socks, using a pen or the business side of a knife, brushing his teeth.

Arriving home to the sound of a running washer, Heather Dunham inquired: Did he set the water temperature? Yup. Load size? Check. Put in the dirty clothes? Affirmative.

Add soap?

“He looked at me with a straight face and said, “Yeah, 15 cups. Is that too much?” Conjuring a 1973 “Brady Bunch” skit where Bobby pours in a whole box of detergent and winds up buried in suds, Dunham had pulled off the joke.

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