September of 2008 was one of the turning points of my life. I woke up unable to move. I cried for my son to help me get up from bed. I realized then that my body was numb from neck down to my waist. My son took me to the hospital. I was confined for almost two weeks. Little did I realized that it was an illness that will be part of my life forever. My reader, how do you think would it feel to wake up one day realizing you can not move anymore. No warning. No signs.
I could not lay in bed. I could not get up from bed. My son had to help me get up from bed during my confinement. My hands up to the fingers were numb. My fingers were so weak I could not lift a plastic plate. I could not look down with my head following my vision. I could not look up with my head following as well. I had a momentary taste of what it meant to be paralyzed.
My doctor said I have a slipped disk. What is a slipped disk exactly? That was my question then. Basing on the explanation given by my therapist, the cervix – lay mans term, the bone in our neck is supported by a disk. It is located in-between each column of our bone. One of these disk protruded backward, hitting my nerve cell. The affected area are C-5 and C-6. C stands for Cervix. The nerve that had been hit is responsible for the mobility of my hands. Hence, when the disk hit my nerve cell, it affected my capacity to move my hands. Up until this moment, I am already in a life-time therapy. Remove the therapy? I will be risking paralysis.
I think it is not really the slipped disk, it is the nerve affected when the disk protruded.
When I was discharged from the hospital. I thought the next immediate thing to do was to get everything going. I was wrong. During my first day of work, I had my headset on. I was online. The customer was giving me an information that I have to note down. My brain was telling me to hit letter “g” of the computer keyboard. However, it took almost a minute before my finger could push the keyboard and hit letter “g”. It took a while for my fingers to move. I was frustrated. Before the slipped disk, I could type 48 words per minute (wpm). I was not looking at the keyboard when I type. I can type with my eyes closed. That’s me! However, at that moment, it took me a minute to type one letter!! Our team leader advised me to stop taking- in calls. Our team lead offered a few more days rest for me. I declined. I was frustrated.
My question to the doctor was – how long is the recovery period? She said “Our nerve is irreparable and irreplaceable. Healing process depends on you, She. Maybe a month or three months.” I was not contented. I talked to my therapist. She indirectly advised me that my line of work may not be suitable for me anymore. She directly told me that I could no longer do the things the way I do them before this slipped disk. It may not be the same anymore.
My mind refused to give in. I CAN NOT accept that my capability will not be the same as it was before. I went back to work. I set my mind that I will bring every thing back to how it was before my slipped disk. In three weeks time, I can already type 48 wpm, just like before. Step by step, I forced my self to move my hands the way they move before. I am able to regain my agility. I was and still is diligent with my therapy .
I thought things would be easier after that. I was wrong. As soon as I recovered my agility, my stamina gave- in. I can not work four hours straight. One shift while talking to a customer, I lost my voice. My team leader told me to take a “go home slip” so I could rest. Stub born that I am, I chose to stay then, hoping I could get my voice back. The doctor said that my neck muscle had been strained and it caused a temporary shut down in my vocal cords. You see, now, it is already my neck muscle supporting my cervix. The term used by my therapist was scary “ weak neck muscle, bone might collapse” . I refused that thought. The doctor created a program so I could regain my stamina. The main goal- push my self to the limit. Considering I have neck issues now, I am prohibited to run. So, brisk walk was the alternative. In the first day, I could only do less of a kilometer. I was frustrated. I used to run from Luneta to PICC. Now I can not brisk walk for one kilometer. I refused to go back to the doctor with this news. Hence, I made my self a brisk walk program.
It is now July, 2009. Therapist, people indirectly told me I can not work in a call centre anymore. I was informed that upon recovery, I will not be able to do the same thing that I used to do anymore. Before the slipped disk incident, I worked 8 hours and that’s it. NOW: I am still in a call center. I even became and up until now am a top agent in the project. Still in Midnight shift. The difference? I now have you reading my writings. Also, I now have extra work from different clients. From article writing to reviews to commenting. An additional three to four hours work on top of the 8 hours shift. THEN : The doctor said it would take months to recover my agility. In three weeks time, I regained it. THEN: my stamina had serious issues. I could not brisk walk for one kilometer. NOW: I brisk walk twice a week, every 5:00 am, walking in brisk full motion for 10 to 15 kilometers from my home. I still have a slip disk though. Still in therapy. Still have the risk of paralysis. Still have the pain. But I am moving..on.
My name is She, my friend. I am a single mom. Most people say I can not make it since day 1 of being a single parent. I have nothing to brag for. Maybe I have nothing to be proud of—except for one thing: I NEVER, NEVER gave up fighting......[no choice..hehehe]
By the way, i got the picture from yahoo.search.images.
Always take care.