disability, spinal cord injury

The Spine Breakdown

It’s a tricky thing….  the spinal cord that is.  I am C5 quadriplegic, and I have been this way for close to 12 years as a result of a diving accident. It was a simple dive that I had done a million times before, except this time I crushed my C5 vertebrae by the way my head was forced back when I hit the water… no pain, no tingles… I never even hit the bottom. It was just a cold and eerie numbness. I  was unaware that there was even anything wrong until I went to plant my feet to stand up, but nothing moved. So, there I was… face down in the water, completely coherent but utterly confused as to why I could not move.  I am here to share  my story with you because of my friends who pulled me out of the pool that evening.

Whenever I talk to groups about my accident, I try to explain just how fragile and sensitive the spinal cord is.  For example, if my injury was one level up, I would most likely be on a permanent ventilator. If my injury was one level down, I most likely would have more movement in my hands and wrists. I wanted to share this website, because it has a great break down of the various levels of the spinal cord and what each level controls throughout the body. Before my accident, I was completely unaware to what parts of the body are controlled by the various levels of the spinal cord. So, for those of you that are curious… check this site out!

https://www.disabled-world.com/artman/publish/spine_picture.shtml

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