Thursday, July 15, 2010

Look Ma, No Hands!

I can walk! Really -- I can now walk without holding onto a walker, cane or anything else. Granted, I limp when I do so, but I'm ALMOST back to normal at this point. Hallelujah!

My parents were really happy when I showed them how much I've improved in the past week, though, my dad made fun of me and said that when I walk with my limp, I look a bit like a penguin. Still, I'm getting places. I realize that I have a long way to go; I still can't walk for more than about 100 feet until I need to sit down and rest my legs and back and I've been told that it can take months until the limp is gone. But the fact that I can get from Point A to Point B with a lot less help is a huge deal.

I've been working hard in PT, but frankly, it's getting a little boring. Because I'm now working, I've been coming at an earlier time and they put me with a different therapist. She's nice, but she has me doing the same, old standing leg exercises that I've been doing for the past two weeks. At this point, they're getting pretty easy and I'd like to switch to something more challenging. The last therapist I had was all set for me to do the stair climber and some resistance band balance exercises. I've brought this up with the new person, but she says it's not time for them yet. It's a little confusing and this is one thing I don't like about this PT place, even though I'm mostly satisfied: the therapists don't seem to communicate or be on the same page. I've worked with almost everyone there at this point and each time, I'm given a new routine that contradicts what the last therapist gave me. They're supposed to operate as a community and often work with each others' patients, but they need to gel as a unit a bit more. Still, I've been pushing myself on my own and figure that PT is a place for me to work out with professionals spotting me.

Happily, the weight loss is going well, too. I'm continuing to keep a journal and watch what I eat and I'm feeling some results. No, I haven't stepped on the scale in a while (I know I have to soon), but I'm definitely lighter on my feet and believe that the reason why I can now walk without support is because of the weight loss. Also, Jon and my friend both said something to me about it the other day. Jon noted that when he pushes my wheelchair (I still use it for long distances) that I'm not as heavy and then my friend told me that my face is obviously thinner. I'm grateful for the compliments, but I'll truly consider myself to be on the road to success when I lose enough weight so that my back pain disappears. Then I'll be able to walk and bend and do so many more things comfortably. It's something to look forward to.

We were supposed to go to a wedding this weekend, but Jon's been sick all week so we decided to stay home. That said, this will be the first weekend in a long time that I have no PT and both days free. I intend to take advantage of it by walking some more. I've made it to the front of my building. Who knows? Maybe I'll find the strength to walk all the way around the block. In my current state, that would be as much of an accomplishment for me as when I did the 20 miles!

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