Hi, I’m George, 48 years old and was diagnosed with Hereditary Spastic Paraparesis back in December of 2013.
I have had back problems for the last ten years. Initially when i had back problems I used to get Spasticity in my lower back on most occasions that prevented me from going to work for a day or two. I would visit my Doctor, walking in holding onto the walls. After being given an injection or two I would walk out with my head held high. Other patients did not recognize me. Many times my newspaper fell out of my hands, and normally elderly patients would bend over and pick it up for me. I felt so bad.
July 2013, I was going to the podiatrist, got out of the car and heard a noise in my back. That minute I found it so hard to walk, I went to my Doctor, he gave me the usual injection to release the pressure – it did nothing. I went home, the next day I was on my way to the toilet and collapsed. Admitted to hospital, luckily I had Ambulance cover. In hospital I was given 3 injections of a strong pain killer but it did absolutely nothing. Spent 4 weeks in Rehab that helped.
Since then it has been now 2 years I have been unable to return to work. Walking I am only able to walk for !5 minutes. Standing still is very painful. My priorities in life have changed. I now wake up every morning and go to the local heated pool 5 days a week and 2 days I am in the Gym. I avoid walking long distance as I have flat feet and when I get tired, on numerous occasions I have fallen and hurt myself, fracturing my wrist 3 times.
My health professionals were very helpful. They all suggested if I continued to do the same work I did, in a few years I might be in a wheelchair so I took on there advice and retired early.
Now I have taken on a new role working as a volunteer in a big hospital rehab centre and loving it. I no longer see my health problems. Look forward to helping others. All relevant people acknowledge and thank me for helping them.
Your story is inspiring George. You have had a hard road and not given up. You are very dedicated exercising every day. I wish I was that motivated. And helping out in a hospital as a volunteer is great. I take my hat off to you.
Best wishes to you