One step closer...
I have heard this joke before, but Ivette and I were watching “The Pursuit of Happyness” and they say it in there and I could really relate to it:
There was a man who was drowning, and a boat came, and the man on the boat said "Do you need help?" and the man said "God will save me". Then another boat came and he tried to help him, but he said "God will save me", then he drowned and went to Heaven. Then the man told God, "God, why didn't you save me?" and God said, "I sent you two boats!"
I feel like even though I am putting my faith and healing in God’s hands, that doesn’t mean I can sit back and wait for a miracle to happen. I am where I am but I refuse to accept it. God has blessed me so much with wonderful people and resources. I have to do everything in my power to get better and hope that God will take care of the rest. And that is exactly what I have been doing as you will learn throughout this entry.
Rehab 5 days per week
In an effort to do all that I can to get better, I now have a pretty strict regiment. I was going to Project Walk 3 days per week and have seen incredible improvements. I was recommended another rehab facility (Precision Rehab in
While I did acupuncture in the hospital in
I will soon be starting neuromuscular therapy which includes a whole wide range of treatments from Reiki to Cranial Sacral therapy to Electrical Stimulation. More to come once I start these.
Father Fernando again
Father Fernando was again in
Another exciting improvement is that I can sort of do a hamstring curl! My hamstring control is all positional though. I can only do it if I sit with my legs hanging off of a table. Then if my leg is straightened out, I can pull down with my hamstring.
In addition to my last post about taking a step forward, this has been one of my most amazing progressions. I had been riding the stationary bike every few sessions at Project Walk with the trainers doing most of the pushing/most of the work. However, about 2 weeks ago, I was able to actually push a little bit on my own. Then, I was able to fully pedal on my own with minimal assistance. Now, I can pretty much ride the bike on my own, with a little assistance every now and then. On Monday of this week, I started pedaling and for the first time ever, the pedaling felt 100% normal for like 10 seconds; it was like I was riding a bike like before with all of the correct muscles and everything firing in coordination. The stationary bike has been an amazing tool incorporating cardio, coordination and hope for great things to come. How I ride a bike ok, but not walk...I don't know. Here is a video of one of my rides this week.
Total Gym pushes
The Total Gym machine allows me to do assisted inclined squats. I have been using this machine almost every session at Project Walk. I have shown significant improvement of the squats since I first started doing this. The idea is that even if I can only do 1% of the push and the trainer does the other 99%, hopefully next time I can do more, maybe 2% or 3%. Earlier this week, we added weight to make it more weight bearing on my feet and feel more like a full squat. My body responded really well. With the added weight on the machine, I was able to engage more muscles and connect better and push up voluntarily so much more. At one point, my trainer, Dave, even said that I did 100% of some of the pushes.
6th month mark
The 6 month mark (September 12) was a difficult day. It was a day of shock and surprise at how fast time had gone by and how different life is now. It was a tough day because of what it represented. Ivette has really helped me through these tough days and the 6th month anniversary day was no exception. She always lends her ear and drops anything that she’s doing to be there for me. I have never met a more selfless, loving, caring person as can be seen by all of her actions and sacrifices. I don’t even have to say or do anything; she just knows when there’s something wrong. Wow she’s been amazing… Even though it was 6 months since my injury, she has been going through EVERYTHING that I’ve been going through too for those 6 months and holding my hand (literally and figuratively) and has been so strong throughout the whole thing. I thank God so much that she’s been such a great support, such a great friend, such a great girlfriend.
Thank you so much to Ivette for spearheading the fundraising efforts. The total out of pocket cost this injury has burdened us with so far is greater than $25,000. Thank you so much to all who have donated. Please realize that since we are going through an outside organization (NTAF), there is a time lag for the donations to go through. But seriously, thank you so much for your generosity so far. I promise you, I’m doing 110% of all that I can do to get better so that I can walk, and even run again!
Simple Things Hard: Starbucks, Bank
Just another reflective moment on how life is much more complicated and difficult being in a wheelchair. As you already know, I got my car modified so I am relatively independent. I can go anywhere I want, anytime I want, just like before. But in doing so, I have to transfer from my chair to the car and then disassemble my chair and bring it into the car. This can get quite cumbersome and tiring and running simple errands turns into a great expulsion of energy. For example, there is no drive-thru ATM close to me, so every time I want to go to the bank, I have to transfer to my car, disassemble my chair, drive to the bank, assemble the chair, go to the ATM, go back to my car, disassemble the chair, go back home, reassemble the chair and I’m on my way. Same goes with getting a simple latte or something from Starbucks. One challenge is the whole assembling/disassembling part. Another challenge with drinks is balancing the cup in between my legs, when I have no control over my legs.
Reiki on my picture
Ivette’s brother, Kennett, is in school for massage therapy in
My sister, Jen, whom I’m very proud of, got a Fulbright scholarship to study in
We finally won our first game at UCLA last week! Thanks so much to Justin Liu for getting tickets (accessible seats nonetheless!) for Ivette and me. We had so much fun, especially since we won! This is the last day I can savor the win as we play #4