[Article] Professor Geoff Raisman spent 60 years of his life trying to find a cure for paralysis. He's been fired twice and was laughed at often. 6 months ago he helped paralysed Darek Fidyka walk again. Geoff is a lesson in perseverance and not giving up on a dream.

I truly believe that a person doesn't really understand just how strong their own human will is until they're backed into a corner.

Many people don't know what it is like to come face to face with a debilitating disorder. It is quite disheartening to listen to others espouse their trepidations of such while knowing that they have no frame of reference. It isn't something that passes like a fart in the wind. It lingers in the back of your mind taunting you with nostalgia of the good times before that may never come again.

There is a fear that sets in when you realize that you may never walk or move part of your body ever again. It is hard to describe just how it sets in. I'll copy and paste what I went through as it is bothering me at the moment to properly recount it.

I woke up one morning to my alarm blaring and not being able to lift my arm to turn it off. I thought I was still dreaming and tried very hard to wake up. After a few minutes I realized that I was almost completely paralyzed. The only thing I could move was my neck and so I was staring at my alarm clock as it blared unable to do anything about it.

Nothing is scarier than waking up one morning and realizing that you may never be able to move again. The fear sets in slowly as you start thinking about how long it will take before someone finds you. You become your own worst enemy with the constant stream of thoughts.

"Am I dieing?"

"Will I die of dehydration before someone finds me?"

"Will I ever be able to move again?"

This is what goes through your head. I lived with roommates but they were out and I knew they would not be back for at least 12hours from the time I woke up. For the first half hour I just laid there thinking it was a dream and was not wanting to think that what was happening was real. I slowly came out of it and realized that this is real and I needed to fight to move. It felt as though my efforts were futile but I wouldn't give up. I didn't want to just lay there and die without fighting. Self preservation is a powerful force. I fought with my body trying to force myself to move for about two hours before I was able to move my arms. It was another couple of hours before I could roll myself off my bed and I started inching towards my bedroom door. It took about five hours before I was able to pull the phone off my living room table by the cord and call for an ambulance.

I started regaining the ability to move and by the night time that day I was back to walking. The doctors had no idea what was going on. I woke up the next morning in the exact same state. After much testing it was determined to be thyrotoxic periodic paralysis.

It changed my life because I chose to control my illness through diet and exercise. I'm now much healthier even though I am going against my doctors recommendation of radiation therapy. I've completely been able to keep my condition in check. I did have to stop drinking alcohol though.

/r/UpliftingNews Thread Link - zidilife.com