I’ve been sick for three days now. Boo hoo! I can’t help but feel like a total wuss when I complain about my “pain” to Nick (and you know I’m complaining!) or when I just need to lay down after making an exhausting pilgrimage to the kitchen for more water.
To top it off, while I’m laying around sniffling this afternoon, Nick’s in the other room on the treadmill completely shattering his personal-best of 1/4 mile by walking a 1/2 mile straight!
We got hooked up with a killer deal on a gently used treadmill from our friend Eric and now Nick is able to “go for a walk” any time of day and successfully measure and track his progress. It’s been an excellent motivator for him, especially since it’s so convenient!
Then later, as I was complaining about still feeling lightheaded and just wanting to stay inside, Nick packed up and went to the pool for a few hours. He said it was a wonderful opportunity to practice mindfulness and soak in the beautiful day. He swam a little, peacefully floated some more, and socialized the most. Nicks buddy Lars was there with his parents and they got a chance to get to know each other. Nick really does make friends everywhere he goes, and by the sound of it, they’re like that too. Damn, I wish I could have been there.
Nick goes back to therapy at Project Walk in three short days. It feels like summer break is ending and school is back in session… well, kind of. The only difference is we’re actually excited to get back in the routine and get the momentum going again. Let the countdown begin!
Nicks first attempt at walking hand-in-hand with Bree at Project Walk. She has slick reflexes and caught him when he tripped. ‘Atta girl!
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Dude! Nick had the biggest breakthrough today – it brought me to tears.
He took 36 steps with only one crutch! He was walking with one crutch!
Seeing him walk while only relying on one crutch gave me the crisp visual of a Nick Fener with no crutches. It’s coming soon. I can feel it.
The elation of a mega breakthrough was quickly muffled by another phantom pain attack. In fact, it’s after midnight, and he’s still being attacked. He’s quietly battling it as I type, trying to “make it go away.” Knowing he’s in such excruciating pain is one of the most sickening and helpless feelings ever.
What a roller coaster of a day.
A pivotal shift has finally occurred in Fener Land. This adjustment has been weeks in the making (we’ve had the same discussion many, many times). The crutches will now be taking the wheelchair’s place as Nick’s main mode of transportation. Not on long treks, but definitely all the short ones.
His constant tailbone pain has been holding him back from making this necessary switch, and honestly, his pain level hasn’t calmed down much. What has changed is Nick’s attitude about it: he realizes he has a choice. Either he steps up his game now despite the pain, or he waits for the pain to subside before going to the next level (which isn’t guaranteed to happen). In typical Fener fashion, he has wisely chosen to work through the pain, suck it up, and get to walkin’.
So from now on, if you see Fener in his wheelchair, it’ll be for good reason (like his pain is elevated, he has a great distance to travel, or a 5-year-old needs a ride). Otherwise, He Be Crutchin’.
Day 1 at Project Walk. This was Nicks first attempt with a walker. He surprised us both. Moments later, while still walking, he said, “I didn’t know I could do this. Maybe I should have tried this BEFORE coming here.” Absolutely incredible!!