Hit a Brick Wall in Recovery

Looking back over the past year, I have recovered tremendously.  I believe I have recovered to the point of what the doctors termed, "normal enough," when they said, I will walk, not "normal," but "normal enough."

Since ditching the cane (although I usually carry it with me, folded in my backpack), I really haven't had any noticeable improvement.  I still cannot run, I still walk slower than I did before this condition happened to me.  My bladder control has not yet returned to an acceptable level.  My bowel control is acceptable, but not ideal.

Intellectually, I knew that as I got better, the pace of the improvement would slow down, but it has slown down considerably.  While I can accept it if I were top stop improving at this point, I would like to still get better.  At this point, I still cannot do a 10K - oh, I can walk it in about 4 hours, but an actual timed setting, not yet.

For the past three weeks or so, I've been feeling frustrated - and inactive be cause I have not much to share, but this past weekend,  I was viewing some videos on Youtube which inspired me and then I started thinking not about how much more I need to improve, but how much I have improved to this point.

My distance walking is back to normal.  I was able to do a five mile walk back in September when I first stopped walking with a cane.  So, here, no improvement is necessary. I am comletely recovered.

I still cannot run, and my "jogging" experience on the sand a few months ago remains the same.  This is frustrating, and I can only hope that I am still improving so I can actually sprint again - and it's just too slow for me to notice on a weekly or monthly basis.  I might up the intensity of exercises though - that might jump start a phase of imprvement.

Related to that - although I walk much faster than I did about 8 months ago, I still walk much slower than before I injured the spinal cord.  But the same speed for about the last two months.  On a good note, I feel a little lighter on my feet now than even a months ago.

Six months ago, whenever I went out for a walk, I'd have to use the restroom after a few blocks, or I'd have an accident, which occured regualrly.  Now, these accidents are few and far between.  My bladder muscles have gotten stronger, and hopefully will continue to do so.

11 months ago, I used to measure bed-wetting by the actual number of times I wet the bed while sleeping.  But then I started wearing an additional layer of protective clothing.  But I would still actually wet the bed about once every five days.  Now, I don't wet the bed - so my criteria for staying dry became not whether the bed was wet, or whether the disposable urine guard I wear needed to be replaced.  And this is still a routine I go through every morning - and nothing has changed over the past few months, but compared to 6 months ago, the timing of my leakage has gotten steady.  When I do leak, it is generally between 3:30 AM and when I wake up for good. Also, for the past month or two, about once a week, now, I don't leak at all (I still wake up about 4 times a night, though).

My bowel movements have been acceptable for the past 11 months, but now is more acceptable than three months ago.  The movements come more regularly, and I strain less when they do come.

So, I hit another period of frustation, but this time it was a little longer and more intense than the past times.  But I think I've got my thinking back straight and will concentrate on continual improvement, rather than lack of the amount.

As I posted recently, but I guess I hadn't taken it to heart when iposted it: "Kaizen," or continuous gradual improvement, shall be my motto.

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