Giffords Could Be Released from Hospital and Transfered to Rehab this Week

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords could be released from the hospital and sent to rehab as soon as this Friday, just 13 days after she was shot in Arizona. KTRK-TV in Texas confirmed a report from Giffords' mother that she would be heading to the Texas Institute of Rehabilitation and Research at Memorial Hermann Hospital in Houston on Friday.

Giffords, 40, was shot in the head on January 8 in a shooting massacre that left six dead and wounded 13. The bullet passed through Giffords' brain, and she was initially reported to have died.

Instead, the congresswoman is making a remarkable recovery in Tucson at University Medical Center. Her mother, Gloria Giffords, said in an email to friends that Gabrielle was sitting up in a chair and able to read cards she'd been sent. She also said:

"Mark's gotten pages of large print of Harry Potter's 1st book for her to hold and read. He's not read any of them so this should interesting,). Last night she took his iPod and scrolled through all the pictures."

Giffords has not yet tried to speak, however.

Her husband, Mark Kelly, is an astronaut with NASA and was supposed to be training in Houston for a mission in April.

Gloria also added that her daughter was showing affection to her husband, and rubbing his neck:

"When Mark came back from speaking at her aide's memorial service, she reached up and untied his tie and undid the top button to his shirt. (One of the nurses on the wing I was visiting with told me, 'You know where this is goin'.')"

Gloria also said that doctors "want to start aggressive rehab immediately and are flying her to Houston facilities Friday."