From the ventilator to home, Michael's determination results in amazing progress with the help of his therapy team.
Michael's Story, in his own words...
On March 3rd 2017, I woke up as usual, but felt funny. I made coffee and started getting some work done on the computer. On March 5th I woke up and could hardly walk. I called my friend (again) to take me back to Urgent Care. The doctor on duty asked me if I had ever heard of Guillain-Barre Syndrome. Within a few days, I was on a ventilator and going through the treatment Plasmapheresis. The next day I was put into ICU. Once I was stable, I was put into a specialty hospital. After 45 days from the time I was admitted to the hospital, I came to Andover Village. I was on a ventilator, feeding tube and had a tracheotomy. Therapy came to my room to help me with range of motion. I only had minor movement in my left arm, other than that I had no movement on my own. As time went on and I was able to go down to therapy; I went unwilling and full of anger due to the fact that I had to rely on someone to lift my arms and legs to get them to move. I was given yellow colored clips and putty to work with and I sat there thinking that it was stupid to put yellow clips on a very thin bar or press my fingers into yellow putty.Therapy worked with me daily and would even come to my room when I would refuse to go to therapy. I looked forward to the weekends because I didn’t have to go to therapy.
Soon I could do the dreaded yellow clips and putty. I finally beat the evil yellow, so they gave me red clips and putty. Was this a joke? Somewhere along the torture of the colored clips and putty I was lifting weights and working on my core strength, range of motion and the strangest thing was I started to dread the weekends. I wanted to go to therapy. The therapy staff was not going to give up on me and I was to the point that I would not let them down. I even asked for homework that I could do in my room in the evenings and on weekends. I worked hard with their help to walk up the hallway, climb stairs, fold towels and even make my bed to name a few things. After five months of being at Andover Village I am to the point where I am able to go home. I am able to stand up with a walker and walk across the room. I can now take my cell phone and send a text or send an email on my lap top. So, the stupid busy work tasks with yellow putty that I hated showed me that pushing a key on the keyboard of my computer was once again possible. Even though I am going home and looking forward to it, I am also sad that I will not see these special people that worked so hard to get me to this point. I will come back to visit and let them see how well I am doing and that their determination and hard work was and is worth it. Thank you Chuck, Rhonda, Brandon and Jeremy. You will all have a special place in my heart and thoughts.