I’ve returned, and here’s why!

16 Apr

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After over 2 months, I’m back. However, before I go into why I’ve returned, I thought I’d fill you in on what’s been going on in my life recently.

During the months of January, February, and March, things were rough for me physically. I was in more pain than normal, I was falling more than usual, and it was incredibly frightening. I felt like I had slipped back in time. Despite my initial resistance, I contacted a local doctor in Asheville who deals with CP in adults (which, in some ways, seems like some kind of Mecca). However, I was afraid, understandably. I didn’t know if I wanted to hear what the doctor would have to tell me regarding my disability. I didn’t know if he’d mention surgery or botox. I just knew that I wanted answers, but I was scared to know what they truly were.

Due to my anxiety connected with going to this new doctor, I had my parents come with me as moral support, and I knew they’d want to hear what the doctor had to say anyway. What was the verdict, you ask? Baclofin (an anti-spasticity medication to hopefully lessen the increased spasticity) plus regular physical therapy and pool therapy for a period of 6 weeks. Even though I was happy about the Baclofin since I had never taken an anti-spasticity medication and was interested in how it would affect me, I was much less excited about the physical therapy. I remember leaving the doctor’s office that day in a weird haze. Once I got outside, I started to cry. Physical therapy? Again? Wasn’t 15 years enough? I couldn’t even seem to wrap my head around it. I was scared and for good reason. I had more than a lifetime of memories from physical therapy to write multiple books on the subject, and I wasn’t looking forward to returning…at all. However, after talking it through with my parents and numerous friends, I realized that this was ultimately my decision. If I tried the physical therapy again, and I wasn’t getting anything out of it, I could stop…just like that. With that understanding, I made the decision to go ahead with the physical therapy and the pool therapy. After all, I was in a crazy amount of pain. If there was any chance that physical therapy could help, why not give it a try?

My PT evaluation (before I even started back with PT exercises) felt like stepping back in time. I felt like a kid, walking into a place I knew would result in me being in tears in an hour. My anxiety was sky high, and I was terrified. For my entire life, physical therapy was associated with one feeling: pain. I didn’t understand why I had decided to place myself in that environment again…and willingly at that. The fear came back full force when the physical therapist asked me to bend one of my knees back as far as I could. I have always been incredibly hesitant to bend my knees due to a painful experience during my intense physical therapy following one of my major operations. Therefore, the slight mention that the physical therapist may be planning to “try to get those knees to bend” had me terrified. Though when I left that day, the physical therapist assured me that I was in control and they weren’t there to hurt me, I just looked at her. Up until that point, I had never really had the say-so regarding my physical therapy, mainly because my previous experiences with PT occured when I was still a child and the primary goal was to get me up and moving so that I could be as independent as possible.

As the weeks went on, so did the physical therapy and the pool therapy. I also continued to take the Baclofin. I started to like the pool therapy, simply because it was a less intense version of physical therapy. Therefore, I felt like I could actually relax. The first regular PT session following the first evaluation wasn’t enjoyable like the pool therapy though. The exercises I was asked to do gave me flashbacks to previous physical therapy sessions in my past, and it was incredibly overwhelming. At one point. I even started to have an anxiety attack. I couldn’t seem to get the feeling of pain out of my head, though I wasn’t in pain during the present moment. It just felt close. The rest of the day following the PT session in which I had the panic attack was rough. I cried off an on throughout the day, and painful memories from my past PT didn’t seem to want to leave me alone. Though I was incredibly anxious to return to PT following that rough day, I did. I explained how the previous PT session deeply affected me and caused me to be really upset. Thankfully, the physical therapist responded well to my anxiety and told me that she’d find other stretches I could do that wouldn’t cause me so much emotional stress.

Last week, the 6 weeks of physical therapy and pool therapy came to end. Though I was glad that the physical therapy had provided me with some exercises to implement into my current workout, I was happy to be done. I was happy to actually get discharged from physical therapy. I’m also still continuing to take the Baclofin, the anti-spasticity medication. Though I haven’t seen immediate changes, I have noticed that I haven’t fallen in a number of weeks, which is huge since I was falling multiple times a week prior to starting the PT, pool therapy, and Baclofin. So that’s where I am as of now, taking it one day at a time.

However, the main reason I’m back doesn’t have to do with physical therapy or being in pain. I’m back because a week ago I received news that the post I wrote last May for Holstee is going to be included IN A BOOK. Though I’ve been published numerous times before (online and in newspapers), there is something so incredibly about the idea of being published IN A BOOK. The My Life Book is still in its early stages, so I don’t have any information about when the book will be published, but I will definitely keep all of you posted. The interesting part is that when I was informed that my story would be included in the book, the suggestion to edit the article since it has been almost a year since it was published was thrown onto the table. I’m somewhat torn, however. A lot has definitely happened in the last year, and since the article I wrote for Holstee involves talking about how I’m writing my memoir of living with CP, it would make sense to include the struggles I’ve been dealing with most recently. However, I also know that it could be hard to limit all of the explanation to just one article. Decisions, decisions. Either way, things are looking up!

Now, what’s being going on with all of YOU? Two months doesn’t seem like too long, but it’s felt like an eternity. Either way, I am so happy to be back!

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19 Responses to “I’ve returned, and here’s why!”

  1. MissAliBlahBlah April 16, 2013 at 8:43 am #

    Wow that’s quite something – I hope that you are feeling stronger and good to see you back!!

    • ameliaclaire92 April 16, 2013 at 1:13 pm #

      I’m getting there, day by day.

      • MissAliBlahBlah April 17, 2013 at 11:51 am #

        Slowly but surely is definitely better than not at all ;o)

  2. stemcollege April 16, 2013 at 8:45 am #

    I’m sorry that PT was so anxiety producing but glad that you are able to move without falling so frequently. And congratulations on the book! That is so exciting 🙂

    It may take a while to have publishing details but I’m sure we ALL are looking forward to hearing when the book is ready to come out.

  3. adollyciousirony April 16, 2013 at 8:55 am #

    Welcome back 🙂 and good luck on the book, you deserved to have your story included in a book. Awesome!

  4. Polly Hoyt Nance April 16, 2013 at 9:30 am #

    Welcome back!!!! Glad all the therapy is over and hope things get better! You are awesome girl! Congrats on being published again too!

  5. jacksdavie April 16, 2013 at 10:46 am #

    Welcome back!! I share much of your pain as regards the physiotherapy… I too have had to choose to go back to it, willingly!! If you would like to read my own reasons for doing so, here is the post: http://jacksdavie.wordpress.com/2013/04/15/the-explanation-for-my-absence/
    p.s. many congratulations on the wonderful news about the book!

    • ameliaclaire92 April 16, 2013 at 1:11 pm #

      Thanks for sharing your post with me. It is always reassuring to find that other people have had similar experiences.

  6. belasbrightideas April 16, 2013 at 5:19 pm #

    Good to have you back online. Hoping you are coming back into physical strength, and sending you lots of good vibes!

  7. Rick Huntress April 16, 2013 at 7:26 pm #

    Glad you are back and congrats on your book! You are right, that is a very exciting feeling.

  8. gwilsonfans April 16, 2013 at 10:38 pm #

    Welcome back. I have Cerebral Palsy too. I tried for years to get a competitive job but I was never able to get one so I’m on disability.

  9. P. C. Zick April 17, 2013 at 8:34 am #

    Good to see your smiling face and congratulations on both the book and on facing your dilemma with hard work despite your initial reluctance.

  10. Ashton Campbell May 17, 2013 at 7:37 pm #

    Hi, I would like to say thank you for your blog. I myself have cp and had femur osteotomy on both legs. My right healed just fine. Left leg, is a whole different story. My left leg is not healing ( broken femur). They want redo the left leg again. I am very scared because of pain and lose of independence ect. If you have time I really would appreciate if I could talk with you via email. My email is outreach@live.ca thanks

  11. awax1217 July 9, 2013 at 9:55 am #

    I read your work and felt your pain. If you get chance go to my blog and read about my grandson Michael. He survived brain cancer at the age of two. I hope and pray that the amazing advancements find a way to help you. The most important thing is keep going. I hope to hear that you are doing better in the future.

  12. Grace @ Cultural Life October 8, 2013 at 3:41 am #

    It’s a little late to say welcome back! But I will, anyway. I was clearing out my inbox (which is too full. I get swamped with emails I don’t even want or read) and I found this blog post among the emails. I must have missed it.

    I hope things are looking up for you now. It’s great that one of your posts is going to be included in a book. How exciting! 🙂

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. MLM DAILY POST - April 17, 2013

    […] I’ve returned, and here’s why! (lifeintheblueridges.wordpress.com) […]

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