Friday, May 27, 2011

May Update from Brian

It has been a pretty busy last few weeks. After about 3 ½ months in Atlanta, I moved my stuff out of my friend Chris's house and came back to Charlotte.  Most people know the last 30 days or so of my time in Atlanta I did not get to do much due to the fracture I sustained in my left leg.  This was definitely frustrating because I was getting stronger in the therapy that I was doing and it put a halt to everything.  The good new is that my fracture is healing.  The swelling is going down and the throbbing has calmed down. I think it will probably be another 30 days before I am cleared to get back to bearing weight.

Overall I had a good time in Atlanta, not only with some productive therapy but just in general.  I really enjoyed my time with Chris and his wife Dana and had fun getting to know their 18 month old son, Graham.  Not only was it good to be around his family, I also actually did more there then I ever did at home in Charlotte. We went to the Georgia Aquarium, which was pretty amazing and I also went to a number of Atlanta Braves baseball games. I may not the biggest baseball fan but I had a good time going and got to always take Chris, who loves baseball, and some others on several occasions. I also got to see some other old friends I have in that part of the country and also became friends with a lot of the staff and other people I met at Shepherd.

While I was there I actually decided that it would make sense for me to move to Atlanta full time. The Shepherd Center is probably the best place in the country I can be for therapy and also a place where you are more likely to learn about or even get involved in emerging therapies and upcoming trials.  I am moving there because recovery is still my top priority but it is also my hope to take on some part time work and even looking into some potential career training while I have some time.  I am scheduled to move into an apartment in Buckhead by the middle of June. While I am excited about the move it is a little further away then I would like to be from my family and friends in Raleigh. At this time it does make sense for my goals.

A few weeks ago also brought about the time for the second annual Hope To Walk Classic in Raleigh. The fund-raising activities were great and I had a good time.  While nobody probably ever knows how to feel and act when you have so many people doing so much for you, I can say that this year I was mostly just looking forward to it.  We had an unbelievable turn out and I do not know how to thank everybody  involved.  Once again, Dave McGee did another amazing job organizing the event and my sisters and parents showed great support as well.  Those couple of days serve as a great reminder how lucky I am despite facing some tough circumstances. Not only is there a need for the financial help I have received, but it also serves as motivation on some of the tougher days to be motivated and stick with things.

I hope to be moved to Atlanta by the middle of June and be cleared from the fracture to restart therapy and see what kind of progress I can make at the Shepherd Center.  I am excited and hopeful about the future and I cannot thank each and everyone of you enough.  Without your time, your efforts, your donations, and your support, in no way would the progress I've made and the progress I'm hopeful is to come ever be possible.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Thank You All!

I just wanted to thank & update everyone who participated in the many ways, shapes, & forms of fund raising & support events we had for Brian!

The golf tournament, once again, was a wonderful time & huge success.  Read a great article highlighting the event here...We love you Dave & everyone else who volunteered, donated auction items, & provided all the awesome food & drinks for everyone who came out.

The events surrounding the golf tournament also went well. 

The Saturday bake sale was HUGE & all said & done raised almost $600 for Brian.  We've also started to garner repeat customers in addition to a lot of new business--I had a couple folks come out to buy items who said they came because of how good the items were from last year!

Bowling at the Alley was fun--my two kids literally bowled till they dropped.  It was great seeing so many supportive bowlers come out!

Again, we just cannot thank you all enough--there are so many individuals, businesses, & more to mention!

Please look for a post from Brian in the near future giving a little more detailed recap of the events & giving you all an update on where he is headed from here.

Can't wait to see you all again next year!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Don't Forget!

Hi Everyone!

Just a reminder that we are having a HUGE bake sale as part of the Kingsland Woods neighborhood-wide yard sale tomorrow morning.

Kingsland Woods is a small subdivision off of Leesville Road in NW Raleigh.

There are tons of cakes, breads, pies, muffins, brownies, bars, cookies, & more--even made from scratch cinnamon rolls!  Really!

Please come out & buy some goodies for Brian & thanks so much to all of you who contributed your baking expertise & time this year!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Therapies: TRX

I am taking some of the free time I have with my broken leg to reflect on some of the therapies I have been doing at Shepherd and deciding along with the staff what I want to prioritize once the fracture in my left leg I thought I would share some of those therapies and equipment I use with you here in the meantime.

One piece of equipment I really have enjoyed using is the TRX.  The TRX is a portable muscle sculpting and strength building tool that can be used to workout your entire body.  Some of you may remember the video of me doing some atomic push ups--where I start in a push up and as I come up I try to pull my knees to chest, which really works the core and for my injury, helps try to activate the muscles in my legs.

I have used the TRX quite a few times at Shepherd.  I use it mainly to work my core and try to help me activate the paralyzed limbs I am trying to overcome.  For someone injured like myself, we modify some of the exercises and I need a little more help getting set up and into the TRX, depending on which exercise I am doing. There are so many more exercises I can do that I plan on recording and posting more video of, along with some of the other therapies I am using, once I get over the leg fracture which has me frustratingly sidelined for now.

The TRX was not designed specifically for spinal cord injury therapy but how much I benefit from its strengthening shows how versatile a piece of training equipment it is. The TRX website shows you a ton of exercises that you can do on your own and the best is all you need is a door or any other sturdy anchor point to temporarily hook it on to get going.  In fact, my sister and her husband love it and use it regularly as part of their fitness.  Kara wouldn't leave me alone about it once she saw the video.

So, again, here's another example of the training & therapy I have been doing to regain function in my legs.  I'll try to get some more posts up about the other stuff I do over the next couple of weeks as well. 

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Help Brian by Eating Pizza!

Just wanted to let everyone know that all day Monday, May 9th & Tuesday, May10th, Ruckus Pizza in Cary is donating 15% of all purchases (lunch, dinner, dine-in, & take out) to benefit Brian.

All you need to do is show up with a printed copy of the pictured flier & have some yummy food!  They also have some great daily drink & lunch specials.

Please share this with your friends!

UPDATE: We just had lunch there today--it was WONDERFUL seeing some great friends & support out for Brian!  Not to mention--the food was yummy, very reasonably priced, & we found Ruckus to be a very friendly & clean place to eat--which really helps when you have two crazy toddlers who like to run around, roll on the floor, & eat, repeat process.  Being able to play a few rounds of corn hole while waiting didn't hurt either!  Thanks again to Ruckus & to all of you who came out for lunch today...for those who haven't--please print a flier & check it out!