Twenty-five years ago, I was a long-distance runner, low handicap golfer, avid outdoorsman and a partner in an advertising agency. Today I can neither walk nor stand and must rely on a wheelchair during the day and a hospital bed at night. I cannot sit up in bed nor can I roll over. My fingers don’t flex (I’ll be using voice recognition to write).
This does not make me unique. Many people find themselves in such a situation following a traumatic injury or stroke. But my disability developed slowly and silently. It began in 1985 when I would stumble on runs, lose the golf club midswing, and struggle to rise with a backpack. I didn’t know it at the time, but I was developing the symptoms of a very rare muscular disease called Inclusion Body Myositis. This illness causes one to lose about 5% of remaining muscle strength each year.
Over this long slow decline, I have had to meet new challenges as each capability fades away. The tools I have developed, the equipment I have used, and the lessons I have learned about enjoying life despite physical limits, are what I hope to share with you, the reader, as this blog progresses.