Plucky Giffords: Hi, I'm Good
Mouthing song lyrics, talking on phone as she progresses
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 14, 2011 2:40 AM CST
Updated Feb 14, 2011 6:51 AM CST
Rep. Gabrielle Giffords takes part in a reenactment of her swearing-in on Capitol Hill earlier this year.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

(Newser) – The once-eloquent Gabrielle Giffords is slowly re-learning how to talk, mouthing the words to "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star " and "I Can't Give You Anything but Love, Baby," and even telling her brother-in-law in space by phone: "Hi, I'm good." It’s "not like she’s speaking the way she spoke, but she is vocalizing and making progress every day,” Giffords' chief of staff tells the New York Times. “She’s working very hard. She’s determined. It’s a tight schedule. A copy of it is hanging on her door."

As Giffords has recovered, she has started sitting up in bed, alert, performing simple exercises, and has even beaten a nurse at tic-tac-toe. “People’s ultimate endpoints are often based on how rapidly they improve,” said one neurosurgeon. Doctors caution against being too optimistic, but for Giffords' mother, her daughter's progress is remarkable. “Little Miss Overachiever is healing very fast,” boasted her mom. “As far as Gabby’s progress, you can quote me as saying, ‘Yippee!’ ”