Tuesday, June 21, 2011

My little marathon: this afternoon marks my first steps without any sort of device

It was only a few steps, but it was my own little marathon for the time being.
I walked 10 feet today without a walker, in the basement of our home and under the supervision of our physio Paula Peres. It's a terribly short distance, I know -- but it's my first steps solely on my own since October. That was just before I was diagnosed with a Solitary Plasmacytoma tumour in my T-2 vertebrae and long ahead of the eight back surgeries Carol-Ann and I have had to endure.
It's a terribly short distance, I know -- but there's been some suggestion, albeit usually worst-case scenario providing, that I'd never get off a walker.
It's a terribly short distance, I know -- but this is the happiest I've been since one of my dozen or so GF Strong physios, Hilary Cole, sucked me in to standing on my own without holding onto anything the first time in February. Hilary, in midst of my second of three stints at GF, got me engulfed in some serious conversation and all of the sudden I was up and on my feet.
It's the happiest I've been since I could move my left leg for my VGH physio Anne after surgery No. 7 back in February. That operation, which replaced my original four rods and screws in my back with six rods and screws, was a result of my left leg coming to a complete halt in my first go-round at GF. In the days leading up to the operation, my left leg wouldn't fire at all, no matter what I asked it to do. The morning after surgery, Anne came in, asked me to lift my leg off the bed, and I did it, and then I was able to keep it up when she pushed against it.
Maybe the coolest thing of all is that I'm this excited. This rehab thing is a grind, and it's so easy to get disappointed. It can be easier to look at what I've lost rather than what I've regained, and everyone I've talked to says that it's as hard mentally and emotionally as it is physically.
I'm sore and stiff every morning. We've tried to rectify that by going to Canada Games pool and splish splashing for 30 minutes to an hour. That tends to work. I see Paula twice a week, and she might work me harder than anybody I've ever had. (Apologies to various people.) I'm walking around the neighbourhood with my walker, and I'm doing day-to-day stuff like cooking and a laundry, and that takes a toll on me.
I'm also back at work, albeit for four hours a week right now. I had my stories in the paper last Friday. That was a decent milestone for me, but I think Thursday, when I'm slated to attend my first press conference since returning by covering Vancouver Giants' gathering, might be a bigger deal for me emotionally.
Thursday's also my next visit with Paula, so it could be quite a day, especially if this afternoon is any consideration.


  1. So proud of you Steve, next comes the cane when your a bit better.

  2. Way to go! Peace & love & light to your healing body!