Tuesday, August 19, 2014


I promise to expand on this post this week I just wanted to share this video.

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Friday, August 2, 2013

I'm back update: UTIs, school, and keeping healthy.

It’s been a little over 4 months since I last had the time to write here. That’s not exactly true. I’ve had the time but my mind has been preoccupied with so many other things in the last few months that I lost track of this blog along with many other trivial and important things. For one, I was enrolled in the summer semester at my university and a combination of just being burned out after a 16 and 18 credit semesters made keeping up with a 14 credit summer a brutal task. If you don’t know what I’m talking about just imagine writing an essay every 3 days for the whole summer straight. I’m not talking just answer the question kind of essays, I’m talking 2000 word well researched papers with sources and my favorite: a 20 page masterpiece that I did get an A on. I killed it. Anyways, besides that I’ve just been dealing with a lot of personal problems and it’s been kind of hard because my grandmother and my aunt  aren’t feeling too well back home in Peru. I need to save up enough money to visit them again. They call me every week no matter what and I love them very much. I lost a lot of friends when I got injured and had to move away but my family was always there for me and these 2 are big part of my life.

 So yeah, there’s 1 million things I want to write about but I will get the main points 1st. Not too long after my last entry on this blog I experienced what I hope no quadriplegic has to experience ever (fat chance). I got my 1st urinary tract infection. If you’re not a quadriplegic and you’re reading this and asking yourself what’s the big deal? Let me tell you. The majority of quadriplegics have no control of their bladder function. Now there are many different ways to deal with this problem. You can hook yourself up with an indwelling catheter and then carry a bag with you to collect the urine. I believe this is the most popular method because you don’t have to worry about finding a bathroom or drinking too much. I made a personal choice to self-cath Which means that if I need to take a tinkle I have to find a bathroom and manually use a catheter to urinate.  I chose to do this because I have some sensation left below the injury level and it helps me know when I have to use the bathroom. The problem with a UTI is that I lose complete control of any kind of warning. It was the worst month of my life. If I didn’t use the Bathroom every 3 hours I would literally pee my pants. I actually stopped drinking water just to keep myself from peeing. Nothing. I mean nothing will ever be worse than having to deal with my 1st urinary tract infection. Being a grown man having worked so hard to get your bladder back in some kind of order and then just having it ripped from you can be pretty demoralizing. No lie, I cried like a little baby. Self cathing and UTIs do not mix. The good news is that if you go to your family doctor he or she will happily prescribe you medication that will fix that problem up real fast. I know that there are cases much worse than mine and that usually quadriplegics get UTIs a lot more frequently than once every 3 years. Just remember to have patience I know that it’s not easy but there are some things that we just cannot control and the best way to deal with it is with a positive attitude. I however did not deal with it with a positive attitude so if you stumble upon this kind of problem yourself try to do a better job than me.

This is my old cathing video in case anyone needs it. 

 You can drink cranberry juice or take cranberry pills to avoid UTIs. I really wouldn’t wish what I had to go through on anyone. Though hopefully if it does happen again I will be more prepared. Some things just don’t fix them selves haha I need to stop being so stubborn sometimes. Besides that everything has been all right. I can’t believe I’m finally a senior. It seems unreal and even though I have more years of grad school to attend this is a big step in the right direction. A lot has happened this past few months that have made me question who I was and how I dealt with things. Sometimes you can get caught up in a problem and it can drag you down. Make you lose yourself. You think that after going through a spinal cord injury someone would be more emotionally prepared to deal with other hardships in life but the reality is that we are all human and emotions are part of life. I wouldn’t want it any other way but now I’m ready to tackle this new semester coming up and continued to work on my plans for the future. I say this every now and then but I wasn’t doing much with my life before my injury and while it is unfortunate that someone has to go through an experience such as mine I truly feel lucky to be where I am now. I have goals and a bright future if I work hard enough and that’s all I really need.

 I also started working out again. Before I go to school or whenever I have time I do what I can to stay fit. The ramp to get into my house is pretty decent in size so I used that in the mornings and do my version of stadiums by going up and down the ramp 60 times. I also use wrist weights and elastic bands to work my upper body. Every other day I’ll go for push (this is what I call a jog for a wheelchair) around the neighborhood. Since I’m not playing wheelchair rugby at the moment and just going to school I started feeling really lazy and everybody around me was working out so I thought that it would be a good idea and it’s really been helping a lot. I’m now able to reach every area of the school no matter how steep the hill is and my blood pressure has really improved. It’s been really low ever since I became a quadriplegic. Nothing serious because it never affected my life like making me lightheaded or anything like that but it was just always low When people would take it.I feel a lot stronger too. I looked in the mirror the other day (this is a little off-topic) and I noticed that I’m starting to look like my dad. I’m much handsomer version of course but I’m definitely seeing the resemblance a lot more nowadays. My birthday is coming up and I’m turning 25. What? What is going on?! How’d I get so old? I can’t believe how fast time is flying by but I’m definitely looking forward to the future. This summer was a little rough but I know things are about to pick up and it’ll just be a memory not too far from now.

 Allright, I feel like maybe this is getting a little lengthy so I’ll stop for now. I know I say this all the time but I want to start writing again in a more constant basis. I don’t want to make any more empty promises, Especially since it’s my senior year but I miss writing here. I hope everyone’s having a really good summer. I love the warm weather and would rather be hot any day rather than cold. I’m a total wuss when it comes to cold weather. Here are some pictures my gorgeous sister took this summer. I can’t believe I’m only getting a two-week vacation but it’s all worth it as long as I graduate early. Take it easy everyone.

I love this girl more than anything.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Dressing game and life.

What’s going on people? Once again I find myself falling short on my blogging duties. I swear, I really do try to keep up with this thing because to tell you the truth while my goal is to encourage people to become more independent writing this blog has helped me deal with a lot of the stresses in my life. I sometimes appear to just brush stuff off my shoulders but in reality there are a lot of things that make me want to slap a ho. Pardon my language but that’s just the way it is, as a high-level quadriplegic it is unavoidable that some things will just irk you sometimes and I feel that this blog really helps me be just a cool guy all around with everyone. I would just hate myself if I wrote on here about how you should be happy and positive and just let everything brush off your shoulders because we can’t stress everything and then turn around and acted like a jerk to people that annoyed me or lose my cool because I can’t do something fast enough. I am trying to drink my own Kool-Aid here and for the most part I think that I do it pretty well. Nobody’s perfect and when I ask people to just look at the world with a glass half-full perspective I’m not saying that you have to be this perfect person because God forbid that’s not who I am, I just believe that life is better if you look at it in a positive light. You’re going to get out of it whatever it is that you put in. karma folks.

Anyways, for the longest time I wanted to do a dressing video because I didn’t think that there was a good enough tutorial online on how to dress well. There are however, multiple videos on how to get dressed with sweatpants and basketball shorts and things of that matter. There is nothing wrong with wearing that. I have been known to wear basketball shorts 4 weeks straight. They’re comfy and super easy to put on for a quad. Also, I’ve had plenty of quadriplegics tell me that they are fine wearing sweat clothes because they don’t care about what other people think about them. This is not why I like to dress well. I’m young and I consider myself a pretty attractive guy so why shouldn’t I wear stylish clothes? I find that a big problem for high-level quads dressing well is the fact that a lot of the clothes that are in style aren’t very easy to put on. I guess you could have somebody help you out but in the off chance that you want to do this yourself and save somebody the time here’s a few hopefully helpful tips.

Buttons. I hate buttons. they're kind of my arch nemesis (along the with stairs). When you’re quadriplegic you don’t have the use of your fingers. Fingers and buttons go hand-in-hand; this is crucial. Whether you just want to put a nice shirt on by yourself or whether you bring in a cute girl over and want to.. how do I put this delicately.. let’s just say you have a lady friend over and she gets something on her pants and you just want to help her relieve herself of said pants haha. I can definitely help you out with the former but with the latter you are on your own (try using your teeth).  Anyways, I found this handy little tool:

 It has a hook in one end and a button grabber on the other side. It's great for buttons on T-shirts, pants, and zippers. But to tell you the truth who really wants to spend that much time working on buttons? I was thinking the same thing. I mean, I guess you could eventually get good enough at working that tool or finding your own way to do it but I just went ahead and took a little shortcut on this one because I’m not trying to make dressing a big part of my day just because I’m stubborn and don’t like using tools. I just got a bunch of my clothes tailored.

 These are just some of my clothes that I just got back and what I did was take out the button and put a clip in. Kind of like the clip that’s in tuxedo pants. I’vw done this before with another pair of pants and it worked wonderfully and it was pretty cheap as well. It really does help me on the time. Also I found these cool T-shirts (I rock the flannel) and they have clip in buttons so you might want to like look out for these.

 if the zipper is really small you might want to try adding a ring at the end

 I’m not going to lie to you, getting dressed by yourself is a pain in the butt. But when you can do it it really is liberating. Maybe sometime in the future I’ll make a dressing video but until then these are really good.

This guy has triceps but I use a lot of the same concepts that he does when getting dressed. I prefer to get dressed on the bed. Just because I find it a little safer. I haven’t fallen getting dressed on my chair but I’ve come very close to doing so. Also, this dude is nuts tying his shoes, I guess I’m lazy but I just tuck them in. He has some serious cojones putting a video like this on the Internet. For those quadriplegics with lower injuries then a c6 I would also recommend doing most the dressing on the bed. But yeah, this is a great video. This following one is good too. You get a different perspective but in the end you’re going to figure out how to do it on your own way. It’s going to take time and hard work but like I said earlier you only get what you put it.

 Last thing, you want to make sure that your room is accessible to yourself. If you’re going to be dressing yourself, you want to be able to pick your own clothes out. Here’s how I do it, don’t make fun of me I know I have a lot of clothes.. it a problem.

 I hope that this post can help one individual out. I know that looking nice isn’t everything in life but I like to dress well and I’m sure there’s other people out there that do as well. There is so much more I want to write about at this moment but this is already gotten pretty lengthy so maybe next time. It’s hard for me to open up about my personal life sometimes because I don’t know what the line that tells you “Hey man, youre getting too personal on the Internet here” is. I guess it really doesn’t matter since it is my blog. I can write about whatever I want so who knows. I met someone really special and she’s probably the most amazing thing that’s happened to me in a long time. Things are going good with school, I’ve been struggling a little bit because of lack of focus but I hope that I’m able to jump back on track soon. I talked to my vocational rehabilitation counselor the other day (I got a new one) and it really hit me that I’m graduating in just a few years and a plan has been set in motion about what I really want to do with the rest of my life. It’s really exciting and scary at the same time but it looks like all the pieces are coming together. I just have to make it happen. You can do anything you put your mind to. This has to be the most corny saying ever but it’s the truth. You’re the only person that can make your life better in the end. Friends and family are great support but it’s your decision to make shit happen. I’m looking forward to writing my next post. I’ll try my best to do it as soon as possible.