Tag Archives: Personal na Kuwento

I-update ang – 18 Buwan Ago… Aking Paglalakbay sa Cauda Equina Syndrome Nagsimula

18 Months Ago…

On Feb 11, 2013, I had never heard of Cauda kabayo sindrom (CES). That changed the next day. This very day, 18 months ago, I awoke with no feeling below my waist. Something very wrong was going on with my body! I didn’t know it then, but I was beginning the journey called Cauda Equina Syndrome.

On this blog I’ve chronicled the first year of that journey. I have been very blessed in my recovery, especially given that it took 14 days to have my decompression surgery and not having ANY feeling below my waist. I won’t cover the details of what has been written before, but this update gives a quick look at my progress since the one year mark.

Many neurosurgeons and other physicians say that nerve regeneration only occurs for 12 months, while others say 12 - 18 months is the time in which what healing will happen does happen. My physical therapist told me 18 - 24 months. I don’t know if this is “frontline” info or whether she was just trying to motivate me further than I already was.

For me, the months since my 1 year anniversary have been challenging with some minor regression – but, I am still seeing spurts of significant regeneration taking place. I went through a period of frequent nerve pain in the top of my right foot. This seemed to be aggravated by my evening commute, which is usually around 1 oras 10 minuto. The last 10 - 15 minutes of the drive I would get the “electro-shock” feeling so familiar from other body parts earlier in my recovery.

These were so painful I almost became a dangerous driver. I fell back on my flight training skills – ABC – Aviate (Fly the plane, in this case, drive the car – make sure you don’t run into someone or something), Navigate (Don’t get lost and for the car it means make sure you don’t miss a turn while distracted), Communicate (In the air, we’d get help from controllers on the ground, in the car, this just means Comfort – try to find a position where the pain subsides. Those pains left me about a month ago. As they left, they presented me with a going away present of more feeling in my feet. I now only have impaired feeling in a ½ - ¾ inch band around my foot, beginning about ½ inch above the bottoms of the feet (my toes excepted as they have had feeling for some time.)

My legs have feeling back except for the backs of the legs and inner portion of the buttocks, but only the lower ½ of that and the corresponding front area. That too is a recent improvement. I am now able to walk without assistive device for over 100 paa, but my legs and hips are completely exhausted by the effort and are in moderate pain by the end. But I am improving, slowly but surely, I continue to strengthen and improve.

I still cannot stand for more than 20 - 30 mga segundo, nor sit for more than an hour without problems. This limits my ability to travel and is sorely missed (no pun intended.) I keep pushing to improve. If I don’t, I won’t know how much I can improve. So I work full time, with 2 hours round trip commute time. And I walk whenever I can, to the point of not being able to any more. By the time I get home I am exhausted. I still have not had to have surgery on the torn tendon in my right foot.

Despite that, God has allowed me to lead small groups and classes at church. I am truly blessed. None of us who are afflicted with CES want to stay as we are. We learn to deal with the injury and we fight to overcome as much of its affects as possible. It is easy to look around, seeing people who do not appreciate the simple act of being able to walk. Or run. Or stand for a few minutes. Or travel 6 hours to visit with old friends or many other things. Looking at these will surely lead to defeat, depression, and a downward spiral. Look at what we can accomplish instead! Life is different, not over. It isn’t fair, but then we’ve known that for a long time. I choose to let my disability strengthen me, rather than define me. I challenge you to choose your goal and work for it!


Ang isang Real Shower habang Buhay na may Cauda Equina Syndrome

Cauda Equina Syndrome Finally Singing in the ShowerI've reached another milestone! This week I was able to take a full shower while standing!

That doesn't sound like a big deal to some, ngunit sa amin kung sino haharapin ang mga Cauda Equina Syndrome nakatayo para sa anumang haba ng panahon ay hindi isang pagpipilian. One of the things CES takes from you is leg strength. Even if feeling returns, lakas ay hindi maaring. So to stand in the shower for the few minutes it takes to shower, at sa pagdagdag sa ang pisikal na bigay showering, ay isang pangunahing milestone para sa akin!

One letdown though is that it did take so much strength that I can't do it every day, or even most days... pa. But the future is before us and we shall see what it brings, ngunit sa ngayon hindi ko ma-kanal ang shower upuan. I am currently passing Month 13 may CES, so I've really got to get busy on my Month 12 at Buwan 13 mga ulat! Hope to have them up this weekend.

Cauda kabayo sindrom – Hindi akalain na lunas

I really didn't want to believe it...

Ngunit ngayon ito ay para sa ilang mga.

Huling linggo, Ako ay tumaas na mga problema sa aking balanse. Now that really helps when I've also got a torn peroneal litid sa kanang bukung-bukong! Anyway, Huwebes gabi ang aking Cauda kabayo sindrom upped ang Ante - Nakatanggap ako ng pinataas na masakit sa aking kanang paa / bukung-bukong (sakit magpalakas ng loob, kalamnan cramps, nasa isip sakit - lahat ng ito).

ps21v14Kaya isipin ang aking sorpresa kapag late na sa Sabado, bago lang oras ng pagtulog, ibinalik sa kahabaan ng balanse na may lubos na nabawasan sakit!! I went to bed thinking it to be a fluke. I didn't mention it to my wife because I thought it was just one of those transitory things we get when we suffer with CES.

Well Linggo umaga, ang sakit ay napakababa pa rin. We went on to church and came home. I waited for the pain to increase... After returning home from church Sunday evening I was very hopeful that a permanent change had occurred, ngunit ako naghintay pa rin.

Sa nakakagising na ito umaga, aking mga paa nadama tulad ng maaari kong patakbuhin muli sa kanila kung hindi para sa litid. Of course my legs wouldn't let me run anyway, ngunit ito ay ngayon nasobrahan sa 36 oras - may sapat na katagalan na idedeklara na ang aking sakit paa ay kapansin-pansing nagbago para sa mas mahusay na. All of this just after the 1 taon mark. In fact, bilang mag-post ko ito, bukas ay minamarkahan ang 1 anibersaryo taon ng aking decompression surgery.


I've also regain some feeling in the back (pilayan) lugar ng aking kaliwang binti - that's new feeling too! So progress continues. God has a wonderful sense of timing - lamang kapag sa tingin mo ay kailangan mo ng bigyan ng lakas at pag-asa sa isang lugar, Binibigyan niya ka bigyan ng lakas at pag-asa sa isa pang. And that encouragement reaches out and stretches itself right into the area you need it to go. So that is a double blessing! Salamat, Panginoon!

Continuing the walk...




CES | Buwan 11 may Cauda Equina Syndrome

Buwan 11 May flown sa pamamagitan ng (bilang may Buwan 12 hanggang ngayon, kaya ito late post).


Buwan 10 ended with some bad things happening in my personal life. These continued through most of Month 11 as well. I was dealing with the feelings caused by my pamilya member and also a friend. Of the two, ang putol pagkakaibigan hurt far more. The relationship with my family member had been on a long slow descent with an abrupt, ngunit maikling, cliff at the end. The broken friendship is something that I didn’t see coming… a total surprise and shock. We’ve all been there before, ngunit ito ay kaya mahaba dahil ang isang tao gaganapin ko na malapit sa aking puso ay tapos na tulad ng isang bagay.


.unknowingHindi ko gusto ang pagkakaibigan pinaghiwa, but it remains that way to this day. For almost a month, I didn’t know how I would feel should my friend ask for forgiveness. Eventually, the hurt receded. This allowed me to align my feelings with my caring for this person. I am now at the point where I can forgive my friend should they ask for it. I can also continue the friendship; gayunpaman ito ay hindi magiging mas malapit tulad ng dati ... hindi ako sa isang punto sa aking buhay kung saan handa akong magtiwala liars sapat upang payagan ang mga ito sa aking mga lupon ng mga malapitang mga kaibigan. Perhaps I never will be. The really sad part is that I don't think this person has the first clue that they've done anything to hurt me.




Pasko came and went during Month 11. We had a nice, quiet time - ngunit ang older nakukuha ko, the more I miss having a family that loves one another. We don’t have children and that puts us in a lonely place too. I come from a very dysfunctional family. Perhaps that is why I have such revulsion for liars. My family’s holiday gatherings (Araw ng pasasalamat & Pasko) ay palaging malaki mga palabas kung saan lahat ng tao ilagay sa isang mask at nanirahan ang isang kasinungalingan na kami ay normal lahat, caring family. The rest of the year told a different, sad story. I survived, ngunit hindi hindi nasaktan, by getting out. 2014 minamarkahan ang aking 21st taon ng pamumuhay na daan-daang (sa ibang araw libo-libo) of miles from family. If you rule out the “visits” when they were just bringing my Mom to see me, o pick up sa kanya, Maaari akong magbilang sa paa ng isa kamay kung gaano karaming beses ang aking pamilya ay binisita mo ako sa mga 21 years. Ako, gayunman, binisita ang mga ito ng hindi bababa sa isang beses dosena.

Sa sa aking CES ...

Habang ako ay naglalakad tulad ng Frankenstein at hindi maramdaman ang aking ankles, it seems I had such a poor gait that I tore a tendon in my right ankle. Now that I have some feeling there, Alam ko ng bagay maliban sa kabastusan sakit ng Cauda kabayo sindrom was going on. The Doc said only surgery will fix it, but for now I’m only wearing an ankle brace. Had I noticed this earlier last year I would have had the surgery, ngunit ito ay isang bagong taon, with a new insurance deductible. And of course I’m on a high deductible plan (hindi sa pamamagitan ng pagpili - ito ay ang lahat ng aking mga alok employer).

I have regained feeling in a lot of areas. The results of the nerve conductivity tests showed most of the L4/L5 damage has healed. This was the level at which the disk blew out, so I happy with that finding. However the points below L4/L5 still show significant injury and the jury is still out as to what will happen with those areas. I do have more “electric shock"Type damdamin, mostly in my right foot. The backs of my thighs and lower buttocks are still numb as is most of my genital area. B&B ay pa rin ang isang isyu na tumatagal ng maraming pamamahala (na pantog & Magbunot ng bituka, hindi Kama & Almusal).

Ako ay na hinihikayat, bilang Buwan 11 sarado, sa pamamagitan ng maliit na pangkat Pag-aaral ng Bibliya we’re doing in our home. Between that and studying for my CMA pagsusulit noong Pebrero, I haven’t had much time for other things or maintaining relationships. I’ll be so glad once this exam is taken. I’ve had to give up some things – things I love doing - on the schedule in order to concentrate on these. After the exam, Mayroon akong isang pares ng mga iba pang mga proyekto sa aking handa listahan, kaya ako ay magpatuloy upang manatili abala.

Ba ang aking Cauda Equina Syndrome makakaapekto sa lahat ng ito? Definitely! Does it help shape my life? Absolutely! Is it defining me? In some small way… it is a part of me, just as my arms or legs are. Yes, Mayroon akong hindi magandang araw, parehong pisikal at emosyonal - sana ay hindi pareho sa parehong panahon! Through it all I rely on God’s love to see me through. In His love He knew that my back would be injured and He used that event to prod me to grow closer to Him. He has sustained me, nurtured sa akin, and lifted me up. I am a better person, at a better place in life because of God taking the lemons of Cauda Equina Syndrome and helping me make lemonade out of them. Where that will lead I do not know, ngunit kung ano ang isang pakikipagsapalaran na ako sa!