We arose this morning did some quick ‘Heidi crunches’, dressed, then got on our hands and knees and crawled to the kitchen. There, I got back on my feet (a struggle for me) and donned the claw, otherwise known as a silicone oven mitt.
While this behavior is a little more batty than my usual routine, it has been helping me get back my mobility and the use generally of my partially paralyzed left side. Crawling helps coordinate and strengthen my walking muscles (it’s how babies do it). The mitt, on my right hand, forces me to do most things with my left hand (activities affecting public safety, china or glassware are excepted).
Indeed I’ve been reading about the concept of neuroplasticity, the theory that the brain is constantly building up and tearing down neural maps that affect, among other things, brain-body interactions. The trick, when you have brain damage, like me, is to force the brain to forge new networks that route around the damage.
The good news is that it works – there are some amazing, medically documented success stories. The bad news is that it’s not easy, hence crawling and orange claws. We are considering a stint at the Taub Clinic in Birmingham (Ala.)…