Friday, June 29, 2012

He Walked.

When Jason started KKI two weeks ago, he and his PT set some goals for this rehab period.  One of their "stretch" goals (meaning it was possible, but not probable) was for Jason to take 7 steps in the KAFO leg braces, without using the e-stim, without the protective harness that takes some of the weight off of him, and without his PT stepping in to help move his legs.  As recently as Wednesday, I thought the 7 steps probably wouldn't happen.  He didn't seem like he was quite there yet.  He proved me wrong today...really wrong.  Jason walked 100 feet in the KAFOs today, all on his own.  It was amazing to see.  Less than a year ago (and as recently as a few weeks ago), we were told he would not stop hoping for it.  This just goes to show that doctors aren't always right, and that every injury is different. (BIG BIG caveat here:  this walking is not yet functional, but it's the first step.  Also, I don't want to perpetuate the problem I see with how most people talk about SCI: this is not a case of someone just working hard and then seeing results...spinal cord injuries don't work that way.  This was a combination of luck, a misdiagnosis, and hard work).

I have a post-walk photo, but nothing from while he walking because I was the person measuring the distance.  I imagine I'll have plenty of opportunities in the future to take videos of him walking, though. 

His progress over the last two weeks has been astonishing...I think we're both really excited to see where things go from here.  He's been set up with a home program, and with exercises to take with him to SCI-FIT.  We'll also be buying a home e-stim system, so that he can continue this part of his treatment at home and work.  I'm also about to begin the process (again) of trying to get a standing frame for the house.  The folks here were able to get us set up with a much smaller one that should fit easily enough into our apartment.

It probably goes without saying that we've been really happy with our time here.  Jason will definitely be coming back (most likely in January), and we will become much more acquainted with the great, but not terribly accessible, city of Baltimore.  Planning the next trip should be a bit easier, though, since I have a better idea of the layout of the city (and where all the hills are!), and what we can expect with KKI.

We're heading to VA tomorrow for a few days.  Then Jason will return to CA on Wednesday with his brother, Nick, and Savannah and I will board a train for the 10 hour trip to SC!  It was 108 degrees there today, so that promises to be buckets of fun :)

To finish the series on KKI, here are some more pictures from the last two days:

FES Bike

Working on kneeling

This is what a standing frame (this one is a glider..sorta like an elliptical)

Date night!  Tapas and Sangria in the Inner Harbor

Getting ready to walk!!!

Practicing balance and core strength

This looks painful.

Jason with his PT, Nikia.  She was awesome.

Love you all,


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