Saturday, May 09, 2015

Marathon ad Nauseum

Barb Polan
Barb’s Recovery
18th April 2013

Of course all of us have dwelled on the bombing at the Boston Marathon and have searched out far too much information, cried about stories of loss and of humanity. To stroke survivors, a marathon is different from other goals: other goals are within shot, but running again is/will be beyond what determination and hard work can do for someone with significant brain damage and a paralyzed half-a-body. I once asked one of my PTs if she had ever known of a stroke survivor who had been able to run after. "Of course - Tedy Bruschi." A couple of years later, I was on a treadmill and brought up the topic, including the previous PT's answer; my new PT snorted. Don't misinterpret me - I admire Bruschi about as much as any other player, and I did even before I had a stroke. I had read his book, "Never Give Up ..." long before I had a stroke. I would like to read it again to glean whatever more I can. One thing I do remember is a photo of Tedy and his wife, Heidi, leaving the hospital after the stroke; in it, Tedy has a hand resting gently on Heidi's forearm as he walks out the door. Now, obviously, I can't win a competition with him, but by contrast, I went home in a wheelchair - a chair I was expected to use to get around. I had been taught how to take a wheelchair "out into the community" and how to board a wheelchair van. I had an AFO and cane,and could walk, though, so that's what I did. Tedy and I clearly had very different strokes, which is what had made my PT snort at the other PT's answer. Before I took up rowing, I used to run - a couple-three miles every day. Three was my limit, I was convinced. Occasionally, though, I imagined running the marathon. In addition to the physical challenge, the time that would have to be spent training was daunting. Both reasons made it out of the question. Plus there was my three-mile plateau that I had not been able to overcome. The other night, I had a dream in which I ran. It was a day or so after the marathon. In the dream I was walking on a sidewalk with two faceless female friends. We walked faster and faster until I and one other were running. In the dream, I was not watching myself, but in my body, taking each stride, and feeling my feet hit the sidewalk evenly, arms pumping. It felt glorious, and I decided that I will be able to run again eventually. Not a marathon, but I would be grateful for 50 yards, I decided in the dream. Seriously?

See the original article:

No comments:

Post a Comment