The physical progress we’ve seen with Nick over the past one month is astonishing. Yesterday was the 10 month mark since his accident, so we spent time talking about how far he’s come since the 9 month mark. Exactly one month ago Nick got his ankles adjusted and started standing without aid. That evening he was able to use his hand crutches for the first time. Over the course of the next few weeks, he became very comfortable and stable with the hand crutches. He learned to use them in public and on uneven surfaces. He walked up and down slopes and curbs and even opened and closed doors while using them. He completely abandoned the walker and rarely uses the parallel bars anymore – even though he should utilize them more often, as there are many useful exercises he could be doing on them.
But today, Nick made his biggest stride of all. After trying for a month now to rise from sitting to standing without assistance, he finally did it! He had the harness on, but the tension was slack, and he just stood on up. In fact, he stood up multiple times; they practiced it over and over again.
That’s not all. For the last month Nick repeatedly attempted to walk with only one crutch, or by only holding the rail with one hand, but was never able to take a single step. Both legs have been too weak to hold his weight long enough to allow the other foot to pass through and step down in front. Until today! Something clicked in Nick’s body today. First he took one step while holding onto Eric with one hand. Then he took three steps. Three became five, and soon he was walking back and forth across the floor while only using one hand for support. We were all completely blown away by his sudden leap of progress. He had quite a bit of weight in the one arm, but his gait was smooth and he was in control. Such a beautiful sight inspired me to jump up and down while incessently repeating “Oh My God”. My smile burst through my cheeks! In a flash I had a vivid day dream in which I was whisked away to our wedding day, set on a breathtaking private beach, free of wheelchairs and crutches. We were walking hand in hand as husband and wife.