Friday, 18 November 2016

The Worst Week Of My Life - Day 1

November 18, 2012 was a Sunday. It was, as this coming Sunday will be, the Division Finals for the CFL. I had arranged for my new friend, Bobbi, to come over and watch the game with me. I had made snacks, set out some wine, and was ready for a good day. Little did I know that it was to be the last good day of my life, or rather of my old life. It was my last day of freedom from ALS.

I had fallen the day before, even with my cane in hand and while gripping the door handle of my truck. It was in the Costco parking lot, the one I still go to today. I can even point out the spot where I was parked when it happened. The fall itself was fairly dramatic, a complete backwards spiral and collapse. People came running to help, but I was fine. Except that I wasn't. It was that moment when I decided I would go into the ER at Foothills Hospital the following Monday.

My doctor and I had been trying for a while to get me into the Neurology Clinic, and into the Back Clinic. There were the usual Canadian medical system waits for these things. Both my doctor and I knew there was something seriously wrong with me. I was still convinced it was a back problem; he was unsure and said nothing. He wanted me to see a specialist. I think he had a pretty good idea of what was wrong, but didn't want to say anything lest he was wrong.

I had asked him just a few days before if there was any way to speed up the process. He said "Go into the emergency ward, fall on the floor, scream in pain and pee your pants. They will see you immediately. They have to." The "pee your pants" parts was meant as humour. The rest was completely serious. The main lesson I drew from this is that I had to go into the ER.

So Sunday, November 18, 2014 came. Bobbi came over. We had a great day, watching football, talking, enjoying wine. Then she went home, and thus ended the last day of my normal life. The next day would bring the beginning of a process which would end in the destruction of every hope and dream I had had for my peak living years. It's sad to think that the worst week of my life started out so well.

I was only 57 and four months years old. I was in the peak of my career. I had left behind a bad marriage and was in my first real steps of starting a new life, a life with real freedom and potential. And, unknown to me, it would all come to a crashing halt, starting with what would be my fateful visit to the ER the following day.

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