Did you ever get that feeling when your heart drops? That’s the feeling that I had when doctors told me how severe my injury was. Honestly at that time I felt a sense of hopelessness, I was the type of person who took control of a situation and always figured a way out of it. This situation I felt like my hands were tied and I had no idea what direction to go. I quickly came to realize, that YOU determine the outcome! If you want to sit there and feel sorry for yourself then so be it, but why would you want to do that to yourself. I was in rehab and they told me “Zac we don’t think it is the best choice for you to have a manual chair, it’s just too hard for you to push”. Well, that day I remember wheeling out of my room (slowly) and attempting to go over to one of my buddy’s rooms that I had met while I was there. No one was around if I remember correctly, I got out my door and I fell forward (chest in lap type of forward) and I could not get back up, I was just so weak. I was stuck like that for probably a minute until a nurse came running, I felt so discouraged and thought “maybe they were right, maybe I should get a power chair”. That was the easy route and that was not for me. It felt like all odds were against me, what am I going to do…
Then I go to my 6 month check-up, I am still trying to adjust to my new life and the doctor tells me “the window of function recovery is up to about 12 months. I feel that you have about another 6 months, but I don’t see much more coming back”. My heart was crushed, I still needed a lot of help transferring, eating, and everything in between. I went home just thought for a while, “Zac where do YOU want to be? Are you going to let a doctor tell YOU your limitations and how far you will get?” . I am not going to lie I listened to many hours of motivational videos on YouTube… A lot of those hours were a cannel called “Motiversity” (if you are having a rough day check it out).
I realized I am the only person who can decide how far I can go… I will walk one day! Fu@#k what those doctors said, they treated me and got my health back to where it should be… NOW ITS GO TIME! Please never let a person tell you your limits and if they do, that little voice in your head should say “You do not know what I am capable of”! Here I am 9 years later, still getting more function back… I work at it everyday and never give up HOPE! You guys are probably reading this thinking “bullshit, he has to feel like quitting at times”. Yes, you are right- I 100% do feel like quitting and giving up at times, but I get my head out of my ass and get moving forward. Like I have stated before, everyone has bad days. My bad days are a little different than an able body person though. My day starts off bad when I can’t get my damn sock on, my hands work about 70% and somedays they just don’t want to move. On a bad day it takes me literally a solid 10 min, now that’s frustrating!
The moral of this blog is to say “never give up HOPE”! I am 9 years post injury with a C5 C6 spinal cord injury and I am still getting function back. I am now able to walk with KAFO’s as far as I pretty much want. When this whole journey started I had to have a back brace attached to keep me upright and someone had to help assist my legs to move forward. The video below was taken this past week and this is by far the most stable I had ever been walking. My core is starting to get stronger finally, my grandfather and I do core workouts a few times a week and as you can see they are paying off. A few years back when I first started walking with KAFO’s I literally looked like a bobble head and someone had to control my hips. So here it is guys and girls, DO NOT LET SOMEONE TELL YOU HOW FAR YOU CAN GO! YOU HAVE ONE LIFE TO LIVE…..LIVE IT! HAVE A GREAT DAY!