Reminder- Lane’s Fuel The Fire event coming up on 10/22

Just a friendly reminder that Fuel The Fire is coming up on Saturday 10/22 at Capital City Fitness. We hope to see you at the upcoming Sacramento Workout Festival to continue assisting Lane is his recovery.

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DATE AND TIME

Sat, October 22, 2016

8:00 AM – 8:00 PM

LOCATION

Capital City Fitness/CrossFit Sacramento
1146 Fulton Avenue
Sacramento, CA 95864

A candid interview with Lane on his recovery

Below is an interview I conducted with Lane over the summer. As a primer, I’m Lane’s friend, Ben, and I administer this website. I worked with Lane at SugarCRM and we quickly became good friends. One thing I’ve told Lane is that myself and others would be curious to know a lot more about his situation, his recovery, his mindset, etc. Given how busy life can be, I conveyed to Lane that it’s possible our efforts to support him and engage with him may not be what it could be if we knew more about how things were going with him and his recovery. With that in mind, he tasked me with interviewing him given our relationship and my profession working in media. I’ve broken up the interview in four sections because of it’s length as I imagine some of you will not read the entire thing in one sitting. I hope you’ll enjoy and more importantly continue to support Lane however you’re able to. – Ben

The Accident

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LL:
What was the impetus to you going abroad?

Lane:  I guess the impetus from my trip was kind of quarter-life crisis, if you will. I was just kind of stuck in the nine-to-five rut of the cubicle job and had a friend that traveled around the world, and I heard about all her stories and adventures, and it kind of planted the seed in my head. Kind of what’s out there. So I quit my corporate job and went and thought it would be no problem finding a job when I got back.

LL: Did the trip deliver what you were in search of?

Lane: I would say it met most of my expectations, and I’ll circle back around on an unexpected result of the trip. Getting out, seeing different cultures and parts of the world, meeting a lot of fellow travelers is huge, I met people from all over the world, and since we were all like-minded individuals, it was easy to connect with people. What I got out of it that I was not expecting was an appreciation for work, which I was kind of surprised about.

LL: Do you remember the incident in its entirety or just portions of the aftermath? Does it ever replay in your head, or do you have dream about it? How vivid is that whole incident in your head?

Lane:. I remember everything that happened. I was never unconscious. But with what accuracy I remember… god only knows.

It’s not something I dwell on or haunts my dreams. It’s not really something I ever think about at all. It is what it is. It was the fault of my own. If I had been hit by a drunk driver or was shot by someone else’s doing, I definitely think I’d probably dwell on it more. It’s something that happened, and I’m moving on past that.

LL: How important was it to have people you know with you while overseas as this situation played out?

Lane: At the onset of the actual accident, I was fortunate enough to have a good friend of mine, Natalie, visiting. Because she was on the boat with me when it happened and above and beyond that, I was lucky enough to be on the same boat with one tourist who was a doctor. So as soon as the injury happened, a doctor kind of took over the situation because the drivers of the boat were just local guys who were mostly familiar with the local waters.

The doctor took over getting me stabilized and making sure my neck was good to go. Kind of jerry-rigging anything on the boat we could use to keep me stabilized. My friend Natalie was there assuring me everything was ok, other than the head. She was the one I kept asking questions to: “Why can’t I move? Why are my legs stuck in the air?”

At the time of the accident, I felt like my legs and arms were up in the air, so I kept asking her, but she was like “no, they are by your side.” So having her there from the comfort factor, somebody that I knew and having the doctor onboard who spoke English and kind of took control of the situation, was hugely beneficial.

I was cognitively aware enough to have them walk me through giving my buddy a call and that I had proper insurance. Natalie was able to handle all that logistical stuff. Once I made it to Bangkok to the actual hospital that I was moved to and my brother and mom came out. Obviously there are no words to describe what that does to you. Having those familiar faces that love and support. My brother kind of taking over the situation, speaking to the doctors and coordinating things back in the United States, dealing with all the difference resources that were going to be needed to get me out of the country, get me into the country and what happens when I’m back in the United States. Which allowed my mom to be a mom; she could just sit by the bedside and do her mom thing.

LL: What was your mindset at first while in the hospital?

Lane: That’s a good question. I still remember the doctor on the boat. I knew I was paralyzed, and the guy said, “Don’t panic too much, it might just be a spinal cord shock. You could be just experiencing some swelling around the spinal cord that is just pushing on it, and as that slowly goes down you might be back to normal.”

So I kind of had that mindset in the beginning when I was in the hospital. But as the days wore on and I finally got an MRI, that mindset quickly changed to, “oh, shit.” The doctors I had in Bangkok were extremely optimistic and very positive. All they kept saying is, “You are lucky to be an American. and there’s endless possibilities once you get back to your country with the technology and things of that nature.” So I think the doctors being very optimistic about what would happen once I finally made it home helped a lot. Also, given the fact that all the doctors there spoke English and the quality of care, I was never worried about as well. So I never really went into, at least from what I can recall, into panic mode. Obviously I cried and was sad and depressed, but I don’t think I was ever really panicked. And then obviously with my brother there handling all the minutia and the logistics, all I had to do was sit there and do nothing except let my body do what it needed to do to allow me to be safe enough to fly home.

LL: When did you feel that you had enough time to process everything going on? Or is that kind of an ongoing process?

Lane: Definitely an ongoing process. My real “ah-ha” moment was when I made it back to the States. I had just got out of surgery, I was in ICU by myself, and the resident came in and in his typical doctor demeanor and was like, “Your injury is very severe, and you are never going to walk again.”

That’s when I really let loose with the tears and cried. I was by myself with just the nurse who was not very compassionate. He was nice about it, but he said, “I don’t know what you were expecting. It’s been two weeks and you haven’t moved anything.”

Looking back and talking to more and more people, I can understand why they do that. They obviously want to give you that worst-case scenario to prevent you from having false hope, but also in my personal opinion, whether this is intended or not, with this injury to have the will to get better, it’s all about kind of proving the doctor wrong. To give that enemy or villain to fight back against.

Adjusting to physical limitations

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LL: How would you describe suddenly going from fully-abled to having limitations physically? Are there things people wouldn’t understand that you can explain?

Lane: There are no words I have in my vocabulary to describe what that initial onset is like. I think the biggest misconception from the outside world, which I had as well before my injury, is that people with spinal cord injuries, our main goal is to walk again. I think that’s obviously everyone’s kind of big grandiose goal, is to be able to walk again. It’s all about walking, walking, walking, walking.

However, if you could ask pretty much anybody with a paralysis, whether they be a paraplegic or quadriplegic, if they could have one thing back, what it would be, I guarantee most people would say the return of bowel and bladder, followed by sexual function.

Those would be the top three things, and then depending on the injury it would probably go, if you were a paraplegic it would probably be walking after that. I know for me my big priority is getting my arms and hands to work again, because that translates into independence.

LL: What are simple things you missed from when you had full mobility that we wouldn’t think about?

Lane: Great question. The obvious ones are walking and feeding yourself. Those are the ones that anyone sees as probably the most noticeable. But for me, it’s being able to scratch an itch on my nose, to change the TV channel. I can’t fart. I love farting. You know, something stupid like that. Being able to cover your mouth when you sneeze.

Privacy is a huge one. There are no words to explain what the lack of privacy is like with this injury when you need someone around you pretty much 24/7. You hear a lot of parents say they don’t have time to themselves. Well you do. When you go to take a dump, or you go to take a shower, it might only be a minute or five minutes by yourself, but at least you have alone time. Or when you are driving home from work in your car, you have that alone time. I never have that alone time. If I do have that alone time, it needs to be scheduled. It’s ok, I’m home for an hour, whoever is with me is going to leave and they are either going to come back in an hour or the next person will be here in an hour. So my time to myself is very scheduled, and I guess that really leads to spontaneity is a thing of the past. I don’t even know what being spontaneous is anymore. And those that know me know I pretty much live my life very spontaneously.

LL: When did you realize that you were regaining some mobility, functions, sensations? When did you start realizing that some recovery was beginning to be possible?

Lane: When I was still in Bangkok, the first kind of big thing was my left big toe. Which was huge, because it was very weak but then opens up the possibilities at that point. I started to get stuff back very quickly, all things considered

The next big “ah-ha” moment was when I was home and I was being a smartass and someone poked me in my leg with a ballpoint pen, and I was like, “Do that again.” They poked me again, and I felt it. I think sensation is probably the one that I noticed the most as far as returning. Movement… I don’t know. And then obviously I know that two years ago I wasn’t where I am today, but the progression of those milestones are not things that I really paid attention to or journaled any of that.

LL: What is rehab and therapy like for you? Is it enjoyable? Do you look forward to it?

Lane: When I was initially back home starting physical therapy, I absolutely loved it. I enjoyed going, I enjoyed participating. I was all about it. It got me out of the house. It got me around like-minded individuals. It got me around people that understood this injury, that knew how to deal with it… that didn’t ask all the generic questions that typical people would ask, including myself probably. These guys already knew all those answers, so they didn’t need to ask. So that was really cool, and I really enjoyed going to the different therapies.

As time progressed, things weren’t clicking and things weren’t coming back as quickly as I had hoped. Initially I was very optimistic that I was going to be back up and going and this was only going to be a year or two. Once those returns weren’t as big or stopped happening as quickly, that’s kind of when it became more of a, “This is fun and I’m actually doing something,” and turned into a job, and I wake up in the morning and this is what I do.

The majority of Americans and probably around the world, for the most part, don’t wake up and say they are excited to go to work. as it’s just a paycheck, and that’s what they need to survive. So that’s kind of how I look at it now, as something I have to do. But just like any job, it’s monotonous, the same people all the time, the same trainers… but some of that initial stuff being around like-minded individuals that is definitely still a thing.

LL: So what do the doctors and therapists think about your recovery process up until now?

Lane: One of the worst things about this injury is the big, huge question mark that looms at the end of this road. This unknown. An incomplete quadriplegic that essentially means that early on I could get everything back or nothing back. I am where I am today most likely in the middle of that spectrum. The doctors say you just got to work at it and do your hard work, do therapy, and whatever you get back, you get back. There’s really nothing from the doctor’s standpoint that they can tell you. It’s not, do this every day for ten years and you’ll be back to normal. There’s no way they can predict those outcomes.

In the medical community, there has been a gradual shift towards learning more and understanding spinal-cord injuries in more depth and detail. You talk to people that are injured 20, 30, and even 10 years ago, and doctors would say, “You know, you have six months to a year, two years to get back whatever you can, and at that point what you have is what you have.” That thought process and mentality is definitely shifting towards this neuroplasticity, which essentially means your body… that mind-body connection is intelligent enough to figure things out well beyond whatever timeframe the doctors used to think. There are people that are 10 to 15 years injured that are still getting things back. Although that is a very popular question and a question that a lot of people ask, what the doctors are saying, what the therapists are saying, where are you going to be and what’s your prognosis? It’s really a big unknown. The only thing I can say is that from where I was to where I am now was definitely unexpected, and there’s not a single doctor out there that thought I would have made the returns I have given the initial injury and how severe it was and the location of it.

LL: Over time, do the limitations that you have right now, do they become less frustrating or more frustrating?

Lane: I think about my limitations almost non-stop every day. I can only speak for myself, obviously, but everything I see in the world is an example of something that I cannot do. Literally anything, like somebody blowing their nose or cracking their fingers. Obviously all the big things like walking, running, sports, and all that.

For me it’s all those small little things that I think about on a daily basis. Watching TV or watching a movie, seeing all those characters doing all these different things… I think about all that. The second part of your question, how that affects me, has definitely changed over time. I was in a pretty dark place… when I first got hurt and once I got home… I got home in June, and as September and October approached of that first year, all the little demons started to come in. I was in a pretty bad place. You really get an idea of what your limitations are because I can also guarantee for everybody else that has been through this is that suicide has definitely crossed their minds. For someone such as myself, the ultimate kind of “fuck you” is that if I did want to kill myself I had no way of doing it without any help. So that goes to show you how dependent and helpless you are.

Obviously as time goes on you learn to adjust, you learn things, you kind of get in your routine and then I no longer have those thoughts, but I still think about all the limitations I have.

How have things changed?

Friends and Family Loving Lane

LL: You have this huge outpouring of love and support. How does that make you feel? Is it too much at times?

Lane: I do not enjoy being the center of attention. I don’t like to talk about myself, which has been a big reason why I really haven’t done much blogging. I don’t want to get up there and talk to myself. I don’t know if what I have to say people care about, if I’m just talking to vent. With that said, the outpouring of support initially was unbelievably overwhelming, but at the time, I didn’t really want to go on Facebook and read what people were saying. I didn’t want to read the comments people were leaving on the donation page. I didn’t want to do any of that. I just wanted to focus on the here and now, and rehabilitating and getting back on my feet. I didn’t really want to be connected to the outside world. If anything I just wanted to be in my whole, this is my daily routine… so that is where I kind of got sidetracked there.

Another reason why I haven’t done a very good job of keeping people up to date on my own is that of the posts that go up, I think I’ve only posted one thing since I’ve been injured. I think everything else has been done on my behalf. This interview is exactly to get my voice out there and let it be heard, but to have somebody asking those questions, but not necessarily talking about myself from my own personal opinion. It’s like, here’s the questions people have and let me address those. So my voice is out there, but not out there in any egotistical or boasting way or along those lines.

LL: How can people be a part of your life and be supportive in a way that isn’t going to overdo it or make you feel awkward? What are a couple things that could be helpful for people?

Lane: What I learned pretty quickly on is that I do have a large support network, which I am unbelievably grateful for. As I came back, people wanted to hang out, they wanted to participate, they wanted to do whatever they could. And anybody that is injured will tell you that the initial support that is there dwindles quickly over time, and I had that same experience. People bringing food over or wanting to hang out, that goes away very quickly. Being extremely social and putting friends on a pedestal was definitely hurtful and still is. I’d like to think I’d be that guy that would drive two hours or come swing by after work just to say hello or to hang out.

Now I can’t put all that on my friends because one of the issues with me is that, as I mentioned earlier, my life is very scheduled. People will say I want to hang out but you are just so busy. And it’s not that I’m busy, but I just need someone around the majority of the time, so everything has to be scheduled. So next weekend, two weekends from now, I might already have something scheduled, and it might just be going to see a movie or going to a friend’s house to watch a game, so it really takes a lot of planning to hang out with me, which I can understand would get a little frustrating for people. They try to support and try to help, but I just don’t have the time for them, so I get how that could wear on people a little bit.

To answer your question about what people can do, it’s really just kind of hanging out. You know me, I liked to go to sporting events, I liked to be out and about. Obviously I liked to party and have a good time, all those things. I definitely suffered, and I still do big-time, but before I could kind of, on a whim, do whatever the hell I wanted whenever the hell I wanted. Now I’m not able to do that. So again, when people want to hang out, it just takes a lot more planning. And when people are with me, I guess one of my biggest pet peeves is people thinking they know what is best. Let me give you a good example: On the Fourth of July, I was going to my friend’s house a mile and a half down the street. I was going to just drag myself down there in the chair. I get there and everyone is so amazed, they said, “Oh my god you came down here all by yourself? Were you scared? Will you be able to make it home ok? You better make it home before it gets dark.” Sometimes I feel like they treat me like this guy that just went on a trip around the world two years ago by myself, and now I need to be hand-held all the time. So that part is extremely frustrating and emasculating in a way.

LL: Has your situation changed any of your relationships or maybe changed your thoughts on life?

Lane: It’s drastically changed my outlook on the world and outlook on other people. Not that the little things ever really got to me. I’ve learned a lot about friendships and friends that I thought were close didn’t even reach out. Or maybe they reached out initially but I haven’t heard from them for a year or two years. Where other friends that I was maybe just an acquaintance with or saw here and there have really stepped up to the plate to help out.

I have also learned a lot about family and how important family is. As before I kind of put my friends before the family, and something I almost prided myself in was friendships over my family. Looking back that was probably not the best decision in the world to make. As friends are kind of moving on with their lives and do their own things, which obviously they are entitled to, but my family is going to be there no matter what, at least for the most part. I have made a greater effort to be involved in their lives and allowed them to be involved in my life.

Some family members I was very close to have been distant, which is surprising. while some extended family members I wasn’t very engaged with have been very supportive. So that kind of gives you an idea of the perspective of being in this position and looking at it to see some of the sacrifices people have made that were unexpected vs. those people I thought would be there for me, friends and family, that really haven’t showed up.

LL: When you dream, are you dreaming with limited mobility or are you able-bodied?

Lane: I hate dreaming. I guess the good news is I’ve never dreamed about being in a chair once. I’ve never had a dream about the disability. What I will dream is I’ll be dreaming that I’m not disabled, but I know that I am. So I know something’s not right. I can’t throw a baseball, I can’t play soccer. Whatever the dream may be, I know something is not right. But in the dream I appear to be able bodied and fully mobile. So it’s almost… it’s depressing because I am doing everything in this dream and then I wake up and, “Oh shit, I can’t move.”

The future

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LL: Let’s say you had 24 hours of full mobility via some dumb plot in a movie, what would that day look like?

LANE: Ohhhhhhhhh, great question! First thing that comes to my mind is obviously sex. I’m not bashful about that. There would definitely be lots of that hopefully. I don’t mean that immaturely at all, I’m being very serious. I definitely wouldn’t want to spend the whole day doing that by all means. Outside of that, I would definitely like to go on a run. Those are the kinds of big things I’ve been thinking about the question as you asked it.

Being able to pet a dog… I love dogs, I have a HUGE place in my heart for dogs and I can’t pet them. I don’t have the ability to not only have the dexterity in my hands to pet a dog, but to be able to feel the fur and all that. I’d definitely spend some time with dogs on the ground rolling around and playing.

I would definitely just enjoy being by myself. That would be a huge. Just go driving around listening to music and be by myself. Being able to shower, shit, and shave myself. Go have a really good meal somewhere and feed myself. I’d probably drink for a little bit too. to be honest. I haven’t drank since the day of my accident. I’d probably go have a cocktail somewhere and just sit back and enjoy. That was a very good question.

LL: So you told me you are planning on coming back to school. What are you going to be studying, and what was the motivation there?

Lane: I never got my degree, and I’ve resented that, although it has not hindered my success. I still think a degree is something that I would like to pursue, and now it’s kind of forced my hand to pursue that. The skills I have are in sales, really, which required a lot of computer use and a lot of mouse use, but that’s something I am no longer able to do. I need to go back to school to figure out something else for limitations that I would be able to do. I’m lucky enough to be able to, via taxpayers, so thank you guys. So now I am in the position where I have the time and don’t have to worry about paying for it, and I need that degree to do something in my life, and now would be the perfect time to do it.

LL: What is the biggest misconception you think people have about you?

I think the big one, and without rambling this one out, is I hate being referenced as an “inspiration”. There are two people that I can think of in two years as an inspiration, and I can follow that up with an example.

Ok so, I’m injured, and I’m obviously doing what I can to get back as much as I can. Did I inspire you to do anything? Did I inspire you to run a marathon or take the stairs instead of an elevator? What did I inspire you to do? So that word really annoys the hell out of me. But if someone can back that up with something, then it’s not a big deal. I’d actually love to hear how I’ve inspired people because the two stories I have makes me feel really good. I don’t fault anybody for any of these things because, god knows I’d probably be doing the exact same thing if the roles were reversed.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this interview with Lane. We encourage you to get involved and continue to support Lane’s recovery however you can! 

 

 

Lane went skiing!

First time back on the mountain and it felt great. Nothing like the wind in my face and the amazing views of Tahoe. A big Thank you to Alpine Meadows and my Aunt Sally and The Princess.

 

 

Looking For A Holiday Gift For Lane? Help Sponsor The Next Step In His Recovery

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As the year draws to a close it has been one a many accomplishments for Lane. As always he works on his recovery on a daily basis. In the last year he has taken his first steps unassisted in a stand up walker, been able to feed himself, started hand therapy and is slowly regaining function, and has dramatically improved his overall physical strength and wellness. Many of you have reached out to his friends and family about ways to help during the Holiday Season.

The best way is to support Lane in his recovery sessions. You can do this via the following site where you can sponsor his different workout or recovery sessions. Thank you to all that have contributed through thoughts, prayers, friendship, and financial means. May Lane have a great 2016!

http://www.plumfund.com/medical-fund/loving-lane

 

A Different Perspective On Lane’s Recovery

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My name is Lindsy, and for those who don’t know me, let me give you a quick version of who I am. I am the gal who spends the majority of my time with Lane. Caring for him, helping him, supporting him. I’ve been around him since almost the beginning of his story (minus being halfway around the world). I have a different perspective to Lanes journey that I would like to share with you…

For months now, I have expressed my thoughts on Lane’s blogs and how infrequently he posts.  Life is hectic crazy busy.  So why not have the people who are close to him, the people who live day in and out interactions with him write a post?  I put my foot in my mouth on this one.  He decided I should write the first post from an outside perspective.  If you follow Lane’s posts, you know how well written they are, and to be quite honest, I am a better talker than I am a writer.  So bear with me as I attempt my first ever blog post. 

Last August was when Lane moved in with me, and I knew topically what would take place and how non-stop life would be, but I never in a million years imagined it would be what it is today.  First off, I would like to say I have never lived with someone who I couldn’t wait for them to move out as quickly as they moved in.  This is not the case with Lane.  I could not be more happy and content to have him around.  This house feels much more like a well lived in and loved home knowing there is someone I actually enjoy coming home to.  We definitely have our moments, and I by no means am perfect and am very much human.  This for me, has been the biggest learning lesson in more than one way.  I am learning who I am as a woman, in relationship with a man that is paralyzed, as a friend, and as a caretaker (which by the way, I do not like that “role name”).  I sometimes wonder how Lane puts up with all my craziness, but he does a great job at it.

Enough about me, more about him (this blog is his right?).  I forewarn you this post might be a little longer than normal since it has been awhile since the last update.  I want to focus more on the non-physical aspect of who Lane is these days first.

There is another side in which is helping Lane grow.  It can be labeled as Eastern medicine.  Before Lane’s accident, he was a Western medicine kind of person, needing things to be tangible.  Since his accident, he has really opened himself up to a belief that there is more out there that is not always visible to the eye.  His theory is “If it doesn’t hurt, then why not try it”.  Over the past year and a half, he has tried and currently treats with the following:  Acupuncture, Chiropractic, Acupressure, meeting with an Herbalist, and Reiki.  The changes are not always right away, but overall I can see how each one of these areas has helped him claim bits and pieces of his body back.  More importantly, his mind.

As you might imagine or know, this road Lane is on, is not an easy one.  It can get a person down and can easily make one defeated.  There are definite moments in time where life just plain sucks, but Lane never lets it last long before moving to the next task at hand.   Lane meets with a Life Coach, John, who is helping with the mental aspect of life.  This teaching is helping Lane focus his mind in the present, not the past and not the future.  It is also helping him learn how to “stop and smell the roses”.  John has challenged Lane to focus in on the positives in life.  An easy way to do this is by keeping a gratitude journal.  Part of the way I can remain supportive of this, is to participate in daily gratitude and to also keep a journal with him.  We record three gratitudes or thanksgivings of the day.  As each day goes on, it becomes easier to find the positives throughout the day.   

I know from being in the inner workings with Lane, that life can be hard since he is not able to do the things he used to.  He can’t go to concerts or sporting events and be heard, there is no job to talk about, friends continue to get married and have babies (I for sure know the feeling on that one!).  It comes down to watching sports or going to a movie, both which he enjoys, but truly misses being able to get up and go somewhere.  Lane and I have twice gone to an ADA friendly walking trail in Nevada City, and let me tell you, it was nice to get out and be away from what has become “the norm”.  Truly, no matter what the social event is, you know Lane will always be there and love to attend, but sometimes it is nice to be outside the box of what daily life brings.  If you ever want to change it up, we have a great book “A Wheelchair Rider’s Guide” of all the ADA friendly trails in the SF Bay and nearby coast.

Last weekend we made it out to BORP (Bay Area Outreach and Recreational Program).  This is a non-profit organization that provides and promotes adaptive sports to people with disabilities.  It is located in Berkeley’s Aquatic Park.  When you walk up, you see a garage filled of a couple dozen bikes, followed by a larger garage filled with at least 100 different bikes from recumbents, to hand cycles and even tandems.  Greg, who oversees the program, set Lane up with a rigged bicycle just for him.  After making some minor adjustments, he was off!

 

 

To touch lightly on the physical aspect of Lane’s recovery, he truly is a rockstar.  He has added pool therapy and pilates to his weekly regime.  Between these two, I am able to see a big difference in his core strength.  Pool therapy allows him to be weightless and ables him to have different types of movement that he cannot do in the gym.  His therapist Kristen is very knowledgable and allows me to get in the pool so I can learn what to do if we wanted to take what little spare time there is and jump on in.  He travels weekly to Lafayette and works with Stephanie at Absolute Center.  She is truly amazing at what she does and has endless patience.  She introduced us to a local gentleman in Sacramento, James.  His approach is a little different as he adds myofascial release techniques to his routine with Lane.  All of these people really help him to relearn how to keep his posture, how to perfect movements even though he cannot always feel what he is doing.  Over the past few weeks I have seen tremendous improvements.

Overall, Lane continues to persevere and defy the odds.  Everyday he grows more, whether it be physically, spiritually, or emotionally.  I can see how it is easy for my fingers to keep typing and typing.  But this must come to an end.  I hope you enjoyed my first post and update.  There is much more in my head, but I will save that for another time and place.

 

More Progress And In Need Of Some Familiar Faces

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Ed note: Lane is in his second year of largely having the same routine, with the same people around him, and experiencing some of the same physical limitations as he continues his recovery. With that said, if you’re in Sacramento area or stopping through, it would MUCH appreciated if you could spend some time with Lane as the added personalities, conversations, and routines are a breath of fresh air to Lane’s spirits as he continues to make progress. We’re counting on you to help make the rest of this year and less monotonous so Lane can continue taking steps (literally and figuratively with his remarkable recovery.

“We do not remember days we remember moments.” -Cesare Pavese

Summer is almost here which means hot weather, baseball, and lots of opportunities for moments.

Lots going on in my life on many fronts although it does seem like the same thing over and over again.  As always I am busting my ass in Physical Therapy (PT) and Occupational Therapy (OT).  I will get to my progress in a moment.

Over the past few months I have been to a few large social functions with my friends and family (Concerts, games, bbqs).  These are a great way for me to see everyone and connect real quickly.  Don’t get me wrong I greatly appreciate everyone showing up and supporting me.  I would like to find a way to get that support to carry over into a more intimate one-on-one or small group setting.  I really miss my personal connections with my friends.

I realize that it is summer and everyone is busy however if/when people have time even if it is for a few hours or even a few minutes stopping in and saying hello, having lunch together, or getting out of the house is great for raising my spirits.  Some of the feedback I have gotten is that people don’t want to stop by because they don’t want to be an inconvenience.  It is not an inconvenience, please come by, go to PT with me, hang out, whatever.  Text is usually the best way to connect just don’t always expect a prompt response.  This whole no hands and arms thing makes it a little difficult for me to fire away on the keyboard.

So back to my progress.  American River College ended in May so I am picking up more sessions at SCI Fit.  In addition I am doing some additional pool work which I love.  I have been utilizing the FES bike and Standing Frame at my house which is really helping to keep me active and improve my overall strength. Below a video of my progress.

On the OT front I am making more of a concerted effort to first off attend but second to work on gross motor functioning.  As menial as it may sound my current goal is to be able to feed myself.  With that goal in mind I have been using a custom wrist mount thing to attach silverware to and attempt to get things into my mouth.  Needless to say it is a work in progress.  I am also working on bed mobility exercises so that I can get to the point where I can roll myself in bed and aid those that are helping me with putting on clothes, getting in and out of the lift, and overall comfort.

From a what have I done lately to support myself front:

I met with the Canine Companion Program and I am in the application process of getting a companion dog and having it trained to meet my needs.  This is a double edged sword since I have no idea what my abilities will be by the time the dog is trained and ideally if I did not have to have a companion dog that would mean I’ve fully recovered.  Also, I attended a spinal cord conference in the Bay Area and met with different doctors, vendors, and others with SCI and fell like I learned a lot.  Coming up this summer I will be attending the US Senior Open in Sacramento at the end of June so if anyone will be there let me know (you can use me for me handicap parking!)  In addition to that my schedule is relatively open so I am open to anything.

To reiterate my biggest need right now is seeing some familiar faces and spending time not talking about my progress or how I am doing but just hanging out.  I hope to connect with you all soon.

Lane

Help Wanted- Can You Help Out With Lane’s Recovery?

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As Lane’s recovery continues to progress, the simple volunteering of your time would be very much welcomed. We’re currently in the process of building out a schedule outlining driving Lane to various appointments and periods where Lane could use some additional help and company. We’d love if you could help be a part of that effort. If you’re able to volunteer 2-3 hours of your time, please send an email to to jedwards1855 at gmail dot com with when might be a good time for you to help out.  Like many things, the contribution of your time is VERY significant and will hopefully be very rewarding.  We hope to hear from those in the Sacramento area or stopping through and appreciate your continued commitment in assisting with Lane’s recovery.

Come Celebrate One Year Of Progress With Lane

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For Lane, and more than likely for all of us, this last year has been a year of struggle and triumph, pain and perseverance, tears of sorrow and joy, but most of all, it’s been a year of growth. Throughout Lane’s journey, we have seen many friends and family step up to the plate to do whatever it takes to get Lane where he fights to be everyday – on his feet again. Thank you for all who have played a part in his journey.

That said, there is much more to be done. Last year, Lane could not attend the Loving Lane BBQ to kick start fundraising activities to get Lane home from SE Asia. This year, we want Lane take part of a BBQ that celebrates his progress to date, and kick off his second year of recovery on the right foot.

Please join us Saturday, April 25th at Noon for a day of food, friends and fun as we toast to Lane’s progress so far! This will be a kid, and of course, dog friendly event, so please bring the entire family!

For more updates, please check the event’s Facebook page here.

Springs Brings New Progress And Optimism

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“It isn’t the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it’s the pebble in your shoe.

– Muhammad Ali
That pebble in my shoe has been my struggle with remaining optimistic throughout this process.  Like most people I have my good moments and my bad moments and I am continuing to push myself to have more good moments,

As I mentioned in my last update I had a FES Bike scheduled to be delivered to my house.  Well it showed up and I am very excited.  After an afternoon of training the FES Bike is fully functional and I am using it as often as I can.  Lyndsy was kind enough to convert her guest room into a private gym for me so I have the standing frame, FES Bike and a few other pieces of equipment in there.  It like my own personal 24 Hour Fitness.  The bike is really amazing in that I wheel myself in, someone attaches up to 12 different electrodes to the major muscle groups in my arms and legs and the machine starts sending electrical impulses into my body.  The end result is that I can pedal both arm and leg components of the bike which helps to rebuild muscle strength and retrain my body on how it works.  I am very grateful that the FES Bike became a reality for me and know that it will continue to be a big part of my recovery.

I mentioned the standing frame that my mom got me in my last email.  According to the PT/OT people the standing frame is one of the biggest pieces that I was missing in my recovery.  Essentially I get placed into the frame which allows me to “stand”.  In turn my full body weight is on my bones and I am actually vertical rather than in my chair or flat in my bed.  Since I have started using it I have noticed a reduction in back pain and am enjoying a new perspective/view on life.  I try to get in the frame at least a few hours every day.

I recently got on a new insurance plan which has opened up some new doors for treatment. I actually now have a Physical Therapist and Occupational Therapist that are specialists for SCI Injuries rather than generalists.  I am feeling optimistic about how my recovery will progress now that I am able to work with them more frequently.

I am excited that day lights saving time is over and I can now spend Monday afternoons on the golf course with my “boys” from high school and hang out like old times.  While I obviously can’t swing a club yet I enjoy being out in nature and the back and forth that goes on between my friends and I.

I’ve been busy with recovery focused endeavors ranging from American River College’s gym where I am doing a lot of strength building to SCI Fit where I am focusing on walking and standing on my own.  The strength in my arms is continuing to increase and my steps are becoming more like real steps and I am able to use the walker to get around the gym with little assistance.

As April is around the corner I am approaching the one year anniversary of my injury.  I am living proof that the saying, “Your life can change in an instant” is true.  I appreciate everyone’s ongoing support of my recovery and the sacrifices that people have and will continue to make to support me.

Happy Spring.