As I sit here this morning thinking about my busy day ahead, nay, weeks ahead and having to move once more, I realize my six and a half year anniversary is nearing - the anniversary of my brain pop, my blow-out, my near death experience. I call it many things, most unprintable — the medical profession calls it a brain aneurysm — but like the rose, by any other name, it still stinks.
I think about where I am today and where I was the weeks after May 29th, 2001. I lay unconscious in a hospital, totally paralyzed on my left side, and everyone ready to write me off. I was told I would likely not be able to use my left arm and hand again, or walk without a full leg brace and quad cane, never mind hike, climb, or do something like drive a car.
Today, I can do all of those things - without a leg brace or a quad cane, although I do need a walking stick for long jaunts. I was also told the hole in my brain was immediately where the brain operates eyesight and I would likely lose mine. I don’t even wear glasses.
I was told that since my brain was flooded with blood and sustained damage, to not to expect to do any of the things I used to do. The bloody barrage soaked the right side of my brain and that by itself was going to render me disabled. Handicapped. Crippled. No longer able to do anything, so don’t waste time trying. Oh sure, do therapy and see small gains, and so not worsen, but I was told not to set my goals too high or expect to regain my abilities 100 percent because I would only be disappointed.
That wasn't going to happen.
The thing is, I didn’t approach my life that way before, so I certainly wasn’t going to cave and start doing things that way. I would sit in my hospital bed in rehab and wait for someone to come around to wheel me to therapy, wishing all the while that I could do something – anything — while waiting for my hour at the gym room.
I was eager to get started. Since I worked out everyday at home before being hospitalized, the wait was unbearable! I asked them if I could bring the dumbbells back to my room from the therapy room and the answer was no because they were needed in the gym. Besides, they didn’t want me to tire myself. Sigh! I was tired all right - tired of the inactivity I had to endure!