Rather than rant on my helplessness because nerve pain is acting up again, I decided to write something
I remember meeting my rehabilitation doctor a week ago for my monthly check-up. Though he didn’t say anything, he looked to me as if unsatisfied of my progress, which I was not able to stop myself from asking “Doctor, is my recovery taking too slow?” He answered me with a smile and started to talk. What he said totally changed my perspective and cleared doubts of me getting fully recovered. You see, I have encountered fellow survivors who actually haven’t recovered from their disabilities after so many years. Though their hope is still there, I kind of felt bad for them and feared for myself if I do not get back to my physically normal shape. Well, I want to share what he said, “I understand that you are young, such that you want to recover in a dash! And because of that you only look forward to big improvements that you forget to appreciate the small ones.” Right then, I remember a famous quote “Great things come from small beginnings.”.
Getting back to my senses, I started searching Google for ways to ease nerve pain naturally. When I knew that Exercise is one of them, I grabbed my cane and headed to the stairs. Before my first step, an idea popped into my mind, so I called my 9-year old cousin and ask her to take pictures of me going up and down the stairs and so she did!
I posted this photo on my Facebook page and shared it to some Facebook support groups I joined in, with the label,” The most effective way to do it, is to do It.” by Amelia Earhart. I was then overwhelmed with the warm responses of my fellow survivors. Some were words of encouragement and some were simply thank you messages for being an inspiration….. What a happy heart I had until I realized the nerve pain was gone! I guess, mental diversion works for me every time.
Then, I got an unexpected private message from a middle aged -man (a Facebook friend I do not know personally). I wondered at firs,t but upon seeing that he shares the same last name with my mother, I realized he is a relative and confirmed it with my mom that he’s indeed her cousin. His message was so warm, asking how I am doing with my recovery and that how he got curious and concerned upon seeing my newly uploaded photo on Facebook. He began asking more details, like my rehabilitation exercises and the stuff they do to me in the rehabilitation center, as I answered him politely. Not being satisfied with chatting, he asked for my number instead, and called me. Little did I know that apparently, he is a Physical Therapist in the U.S. and he wants to help with my recovery by being my distant Physiotherapist! Not only that! He even offered to send me some stuff I can use for my exercises when his wife comes back to the country on December! The conversation kept going and since he was getting more technical with words, I called one of my cousins who happens to be a nurse and gave him the phone. He instructed my cousin to do some physical assessment on my movements, and my cousin went along. I was happy to find out that I could already do a little upward movement on my paralyzed foot! I was prescribed some Orthosis stuff for my wrist and ankle movements on my last doctor’s visit, but he told me I do not need them yet. He said they would be my last resort and what I really need now is exercise! He taught me a series of exercises to strengthen my core first. He said that when my trunk becomes strong, my extremities will follow. I am providing a list of these exercises below hoping that it can help my fellow warriors. Just click on each to see how it is done:
- Shoulder Protraction/Retraction
- Bridging Exercises ( Progression- simple to more challenging )
- Dead Bug Exercises
- Quadruped exercise
- Superman Exercises
- Walk with an ankle weights on the wrist of the affected arm to counter resist the flexion.
IMPORTANT: Talk with your rehab doctor before doing any of these exercises as we have different recovery requirements depending on our brain injury.
I decided to follow his advice and will be providing an update here after a month! I’ll mark my calendar, it’s Sept. 26, and I will start today! 🙂