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It’s human nature. We hate uncertainty. Newly injured people and their loved ones tortured themselves with questions. “How injured am I and how much return will I get.” This question cannot be answered by doctors or therapist. So people do the next best thing. They compare themselves to other people with similar injuries. “I’m a C6 so I have to be better off than the person that is a C4. My doctor said I’m incomplete so that has to be better than a complete injury.”

It’s hard. We want to know things are going to get better. You hear stories about the person in the exact same situation that had a full recovery. I can’t count the number of people who showed me their halo scars or told me about someone with a broken neck and they were walking again.

Every injury is a snowflake. Everyone is different. Ask 10 people that are T12 paraplegics and they will all have a different functional level and a different story about where they were and where they are now.

Hope for the best but realize every situation is unique

Take a breath. What will happen will happen. Hope for the best. Prepare for the worst. Take advantage of every minute you have in therapy because it is way too short these days. Get as much help for your current functional level as you can. Don’t tell yourself you’re waiting to do therapy until you get better or you can work on walking.

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Focus on what you have, not what you’ve lost

I know people who have gotten a lot of return back and I know people who haven’t gotten any return back. I know that how much return you get or don’t get does not determine if you are happy. The happiest people I know are the ones that are doing the best with what they have and not focusing on what they’ve lost.