“No matter how much it hurts now, someday you will look back and realize your struggles changed your life for the better.” –Unknown
This quote summarizes in one sentence what I have learned the past couple of months where I went from training for a marathon to re-learning how to walk. This year has been the hardest year of my life, and I am about to share my story. Please take some time out of your day to read this because this year has been a life-changing year in both good and bad ways.
I woke up on Sunday, June 25th with numbness and tingling in my right foot that progressed up my calf over the next 24 hours. The numbness and tingling then progressed to complete motor loss below my right knee, which was described by the physicians as “foot drop.” I had become temporarily paralyzed below my knee, and Milind and I were beyond scared. I spent a couple of days at the UAB hospital under the care of the best neurologists, orthopedic surgeons, and internal medicine physicians. After 7 MRIs, 20 vials of blood, EMGs, and ECGs, I was cleared of all auto immune diseases, syndromes etc. I was released from the hospital with no definitive answer of what I have but told this is 99% just a one time event.
The real work began after my hospital release; my brain was not communicating with any of my muscles below my knee causing my calf muscle and hamstring to atrophy. Many of you know I am a runner, so to not be able to walk and have extreme atrophy was heartbreaking and honestly just scary!
With the help of my phenomenal physical therapists at UAB Spain Rehab and my wonderful husband, I began my journey to re-learn how to walk and gain my right leg strength back. My neurons slowly began to fire and communicate again leading to slow regain of movement in my leg. The other half (rebuilding muscle mass) would require dedication and hard work on my end. I spent 1-2 hours a day either at Spain Rehab or at home doing my PT exercises JUST to be able to walk “normal” again. I am improving every day, holding my head up high, and trying my best to see the positive in my story. My husband, family, and friends have been beyond supportive and integral to my recovery from always checking up on me, driving me around, to just loving & motivating me.
I am now ready to face my next challenge for the year of 2017: I will no longer be able to run the full marathon for Kulture City, but I will be running the Magic City Half Marathon on Sunday, November 19th for Kulture City, for myself, and for all those who have had any struggles in their life. This scary, frustrating, and disheartening life experience just pushes me harder to spread the word of Kulture City to create a community and world of inclusion and acceptance.
Please support my “comeback” race by donating below & supporting me at the race on Sunday, November 19th! #bestrong #inclusion
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