I woke up this morning asking myself this very question. My disability has changed so subtly but so profoundly over the 3 years I’ve been just living in my condo. I specifically remember if I’d fall I’d have to crawl to a piece of furniture to help get myself up.
This chair was a major assistance piece. It was the closest furniture from the kitchen or bathroom and I used it so often to aid me back to standing. Never an easy task but now an impossible one. Crawling alone would be extremely difficult but once there, I wouldn’t be able to get myself up with my own muscle strength. I’d need a small miracle for that to happen. When did it change?
Multiple sclerosis disability doesn’t come on suddenly. I didn’t wake up and not be able to pull myself up anymore. It comes slowly or so it seems. I was always compensating for my weaker muscles by adjusting how I moved around or got myself up. The weaker muscles continued to remain weaker as the other muscles continued to decline. I finally ran out of ways to adjust myself to compensate for the weakness. It is through the programs on the MS Gym I have started to once again work some of these weaker muscles. I even started to understand why I can’t get myself up anymore. I may still have weakness but I have now learned how to utilize my wheelchair to assist me to get off the floor. I purposely go on the floor to complete exercises and get myself back up. Other than a few hiccups, I haven’t been trapped on the floor in months.
I can’t pinpoint my decline but I can see my success. I may not be burning hundreds of calories in a workout anymore but I am working hard. My results aren’t in a toner figure or weight loss but in standing up and balance drills. My success is being on my stomach and being able to push myself up to my knees. It’s a far cry from my intense P90X workouts I use to love. However my commitment to move every day is my commitment to fight. I might be getting worse as the years continue but I’m certain if I wasn’t still fighting hard, I wouldn’t be having any success stories to write about.