Photo by Wuan.
This is something that I am not doing enough of. Many years ago when I was undergoing intensive physiotherapy, my calf and thigh muscles, although atrophied, were well toned. That was achieved through a series of exercises designed by Jenny Tan, my physiotherapist. That was mostly the slow spastic steps on the parallel bars, first with knee braces and then later without. The day that I walked on the parallel bars without the braces was an achievement that I am still proud of.
Apart from that, there was also the work out with weights to build the strength of my arms, one daily routine that I seldom missed. Of all the exercises, I like standing against the wall frame best. Each time I stood up, I could feel my muscles being stretched. That was such a refreshing feeling in the limbs that I had little control of.
Standing for a tetraplegic has multiple benefits. It keeps the blood circulating smoothly. It keeps the muscles toned. It keeps the weight off the most vulnerable spots of the buttocks from getting pressure sores. It keeps osteoporosis at bay, one condition that wheelchair-bound people suffer. Simple it may seem, but I usually could not last more 30 minutes without getting worn out. That was many years ago. I have slackened since.
It felt good to be standing again. Seeing the room from a different angle invoked an undescribable emotion in me, always. Looking out the window produced an even more exhilarating view. Everything looked different from that perspective. I may never be able to see everything as I used to again. Nevertheless, I am thankful for those few minutes where everything seemed like they were before I broke my neck.