Sending Big Mike some good vibes

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Vegasclimber

Trad climber
Las Vegas, NV.
Mar 17, 2013 - 06:07am PT
Hey Bro - stoked at your progress! Christina and I think of you every day.

We had a nice adventure today. Drove out to the Kelso dunes south of Vegas. Got a super awesome bonus - we found an endangered Desert Tortoise on the road! It's super early in the season to see them, and seeing them is rare at best.

We wanted to move him off the road, but you have to minimize contact with them. I was hunkered down a few feet away, and he came walking right up to me! So stoked!

I figured out he was after the shade I was casting, so I kept moving a bit and he would follow me to get in the shade again. Finally got him off the road, until he found a shady bush he liked better and we left him there. Got some great pics, I will post a couple up once I go through my camera.

Keep up the great work, we are all rooting for you with every step you take.
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Mar 17, 2013 - 04:17pm PT
Cool dude! That sounds rad! I'm guessing no camera or you would have some rad pics to show me!

Apparently I pissed off Bruce with my realization that I am stoked for what we got to do rather than how I felt sometimes on the trip with my expectations vs reality. For this I am sorry Bruce. I grown a lot in these past three weeks and I guess talking about it publicly has embarrassed/pissed you off.

I hope you can forgive me someday and realize that I was never slagging you but in fact realizing that I was being a big baby and stupidly frustrated rather than enjoying every moment of our luxurious vacation.
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Mar 17, 2013 - 06:23pm PT
Thursday was a great day. My pt block was kick a$$ and I made great progress. My pt had me standing between the parallel bars and hitting a balloon back and forth with her. It was actually quite challenging to balance and hit the balloon at the same time. It's funny the things that are challenging when you are recovering from a spinal injury.

I fact everything from putting your socks on to going to the bathroom is a new challenge. Overcoming challenges has always been my thing, so this has just been a new set to keep my busy.

Then we went to the gym to practice with a walker again. This was a lot more territory than I had ever been given to cover. Half way through, Sandra showed up and took this shot.

How do I do this again??

Sandra T photo

I managed two laps on the walker and then another two with the canecrutches. Sandra was pretty stoked to say the least, as was I.

I saw the doctor after pt and we sorted out my meds which was a relief. The rest of my day's schedule was pretty mellow, so Sandra had arranged for me to get my hair cut.

Last week she had stopped by one of the local salons to enquire about it, but got a less than enthusiastic response from the front desk. She stormed out in frustration and one of the owners who just happened to be sitting in the waiting room, chased her down.

The owner told Sandra she would see what she could arrange and got her phone number. Then one of the stylists contacted her and told her that she would come here to cut my hair! Not only that, but she would do it free of charge because she was happy to help out!

So I got my haircut on Thursday afternoon and we were stoked to have it done. Sandra and I got to chill for a bit after that, and I got pretty tired and passed out. When I awoke, she told me that she had arranged for a free massage too! I was really stoked about that, as I can always use a massage and usually can't afford such a luxury. I guess the local college practices here at the rehab center!

Sandra and I got a bit more time to cuddle and i passed out again eventually. Then she had to leave and my masseus showed up. He did a killer job on my shoulders. He really loosened my upper body up quite a bit. Sleeping has been much easier since! Thanks babe! And thanks to my massuse too!!
Tricouni

Mountain climber
Vancouver
Mar 17, 2013 - 06:35pm PT
Hi Big Mike, Great how you are coming along; I couldn't believe how easily you stood up yesterday. And very cool story about the hair stylist. Give her a nice tip, unless it's the original crabby one.
Ron Anderson

Trad climber
Soon to be Nipple suckling Liberal
Mar 17, 2013 - 06:38pm PT
One tough SOB! Good on ya Biggie M!
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Mar 17, 2013 - 07:24pm PT
Thanks guys!

Tricouni- Sandra got her a gift card for Starbucks. Hopefully she likes coffee!

Ron a thanks buddy! I'm busting my butt.
MH2

climber
Mar 17, 2013 - 09:03pm PT
we are all rooting for you with every step you take.


What Vegasclimber said. The steps, the balance, the balloon swatting may SEEM like simple things, but I swear on my Handbook of Physiology that they are not.
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Mar 17, 2013 - 09:14pm PT
Based on how much effort they take, mh2, you are entirely correct. I never thought so before this though!! ;)
crunch

Social climber
CO
Mar 17, 2013 - 09:20pm PT
It's funny the things that are challenging when you are recovering from a spinal injury.

Yeah, but you are doing well. Important to get out of the chair; avoid sitting, get on your feet, no matter what sticks or bars or other help you need. Your progress is looking great.
One way to look at it is that you have two injuries in one: the spine, and all the other stuff. The broken bits call for rest; but the spinal cord healing requires usage, exercise. Sounds like all the other stuff is healing up, so it's probably time to shift gears and get on the spine pt.

When I hurt my spine, 3 years ago, I recall that putting on socks would just give me fits! For a while had to use a funny "cheater-stick" thingy to help.

All the best!
nita

Social climber
chica de chico, I don't claim to be a daisy.
Mar 17, 2013 - 10:32pm PT

Big Mike, WOW...pretty incredible to see pictures of you walking!..... I'm so happy for you....

Thanks for all the updates, and always being such an inspiration.

Saludos....(-;



ps...i hope you are eating some fruits and veggies...

neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Mar 17, 2013 - 10:52pm PT
hey there say, ... big mike.... you are making big progress!!

all the little detail work is getting added in, how nice!

and--listen to nita, as to the eats, :)
Jim Brennan

Trad climber
Vancouver Canada
Mar 17, 2013 - 10:55pm PT
After seeing that picture with the physio crew, I think your biggest problem towards a cure is bonking your forehead in a door jamb while walking back to your room...

HAHAHAHAHHAA ! ! !
kennyt

climber
Woodfords,California
Mar 17, 2013 - 10:56pm PT
Looking good Mike, you and the ribs.
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
Mar 17, 2013 - 11:20pm PT
I fact everything from putting your socks on to going to the bathroom is a new challenge.

No sh#t.

After they bolted my leg back on to my body it didn't take too long before I could get around a bit (a very little bit) on crutches, but some of the simplest things were bizarrely difficult and painful.

The one that I remember more than any other was lying on my back (yeah, I could do that) with a sock on my foot (getting the sock on was too much sometimes) and a sheet of Teflon under my leg. The idea was that I should raise my knee so my heel slid back along the Teflon sheet. No friction, no load, just a simple movement of the leg.

F*#king near killed me.

Keep at it big guy.
browniephoto

climber
bc
Mar 18, 2013 - 12:10am PT
Captain...or Skully

climber
Mar 18, 2013 - 12:13am PT
I'd give you a free haircut whenever you like, too, Big Mike.
You probably wouldn't be as pleased by mine. ;-)
Meh. Tunes follow.



Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Mar 18, 2013 - 03:54am PT
Yeah, but you are doing well. Important to get out of the chair; avoid sitting, get on your feet, no matter what sticks or bars or other help you need. Your progress is looking great.

Hopefully this week they give me a walker so I can do that. Right now I'm still stuck in the chair or bed when I'm not in pt or ot. My only out is my free solo standing trick, and I do that quite a bit, when ever it makes things easier.

When I hurt my spine, 3 years ago, I recall that putting on socks would just give me fits! For a while had to use a funny "cheater-stick" thingy to help.

I've got it down now, just fold my feet up over my knees, while lying on my back or sitting up and the slip em on. Same thing for shoes. It sure was annoying having to ask the nurses to do it all the time for the first week..

All the best!

Thanks man!


Big Mike, WOW...pretty incredible to see pictures of you walking!..... I'm so happy for you....
Thanks for all the updates, and always being such an inspiration.

Thanks Nita! I'm happy too!! This thing is kinda my interactive journal I guess, as for inspiration, I'm just trying to be as positive as I can knowing that it helps me a lot. It is nice to know others are inspired by it.


ps...i hope you are eating some fruits and veggies...

I have cleaned up my diet so much! Primarily because of my constipation issues due to my pain meds. I seems to be working! So I am really happy about that. I still miss my junk food though ;)

hey there say, ... big mike.... you are making big progress!!

I am very happy to be doing so. I thank my luck stars that the spinal cord damage was limited to bruising and a small tear to the sheath!!!! The support I have received both online and in person has made the largest difference I think! If ever I start to get down, I get a visitor, or log in to st or fb and I can't help but feel the love and realize I have nothing to be bummed about!

After seeing that picture with the physio crew, I think your biggest problem towards a cure is bonking your forehead in a door jamb while walking back to your room...

Once they let me loose on the walker, for sure!!! ;) lol.. I'm still focusing on getting my stride back which is why I'm looking at my feet. I still have majorly reduced feeling in my left leg/foot so I'm doing eye leg coordination!! ;)



Looking good Mike, you and the ribs.

But those ribs look better!! Lol!! Mmmm!!

The one that I remember more than any other was lying on my back (yeah, I could do that) with a sock on my foot (getting the sock on was too much sometimes) and a sheet of Teflon under my leg. The idea was that I should raise my knee so my heel slid back along the Teflon sheet. No friction, no load, just a simple movement of the leg.

Damn! That sounds rough ghost!! With the drugs, I've actually got everything pretty sorted. Nothing I do really hurts anymore, my leg just gets super tired to the point of where I just can't do it anymore!!




Sounds like you have a great GF, Mike.

I have an amazing girlfriend!! She has stuck beside me through thick and thin, and is the hottest, kindest, compassionate, sensitive, loving person I have ever met. This injury has taught us both a lot. I can never imagine being without her, and I hope one day, she can see all the things I see in her.


And lots of great people around you, I'm sure you'll come back stronger than ever.

Wishing you all the best, SC.

It makes it so much easier to have the support network for sure. I can never give up when so many others are rooting for me.

Kieran- thank you. You have no idea how much I miss those views. Just seeing Squamish, the mountains, the sky and the rock lifts my heart. I miss it so much. Please keep it up! Keep sending for me! I'm so happy to know you guys are out there still killing it!!!


I'd give you a free haircut whenever you like, too, Big Mike.
You probably wouldn't be as pleased by mine. ;-)

Thanks capt s! I probably wouldn't even care.... But Sandra would hate it ;)

Thanks for the tunes... What a weird video!!
thekidcormier

Gym climber
squamish, b.c.
Mar 18, 2013 - 10:18am PT
Good morning Mikey!

Sounds like you're making one hell of a come back. So stoked for ya!


Me, Ryan and Kieran have been out picking plums.. Ones called Big Mikes reach, which I pulled Off the second ascent of yesterday. An I picked one and called it The Blue Dragon, and Ryan got the second ascent.

Plums plums every where
Lets go pick a treat

These plums are for the ego
They're not ment to eat
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Mar 18, 2013 - 10:55am PT
You guys rock man!! Thanks for the homage ;)
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Mar 18, 2013 - 10:57am PT
Friday started well, I woke up right before my nurse came in for breakfast. My breakfast actually contained bacon, which I simply could not believe!! I have not had bacon since I hurt myself!! After breakfast I headed down to pt.

I got halfway through my exercises and I was just bagged. I was physically and mentally exhausted. I ended up taking an extra long break before my walking session. My pt an I worked on balancing while stepping up on one foot, and a few other things, but i was so bagged, we didn't get much accomplished.

Then we went to the gym and I did a lap with the walker, and that was all I could manage. I went back to my room, and passed out. I slept until 2:00 when my nurse woke me for drugs, and I ate lunch before rushing off to ot.

It was my first occupational therapy appointment since Tuesday, and Nigel explained that he was pretty busy with other clients this week so he didn't have very much time to see me.

We worked on using the cane crutches to balance while stepping and getting my glutes and hip flexers firing properly when doing it. My left side which is the numb side is actually better at firing my hip and glutes while my right hip is weaker. Probably because of the mechanism of my injury.


Then we did some standing cane transfers to the chair,
and I tried one without the canes. I was pretty pooped at this point and Nigel could see it, so we called it early.

I went bad to my room and hit the sack again until around 6 when I took my Tylenol, and them not long after Nate and Relic showed up to hang out for a bit. We chatted for awhile and then I asked Nate if he had seen relics flick "No Permanent Address" yet. He said no, so i threw on the DVD copy that relic had lent me and we got the live commentary from him to boot, which was sick!

Then I showed them my now infamous party trick.

look Ma, no walker!!
look Ma, no walker!!
Credit: Relic


They peaced out not long after that so Nate could get his plastic fix on, and I watched "snakes on a plane" for my first time... Talk about cheesy.. ;) that was about it! I was so bagged I got to bed pretty early....


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