Thursday, March 31, 2005

Testimonial: Benjamin Bloom

I would wake up each morning taking bets on which part of my body would give me more pain during that particular day. Would it be my curved back? A safe bet as every other morning my back made me grimace as I got out of bed? Perhaps it would be my inwardly rotated right leg? Ten operations had done nothing to alleviate the muscle and joint pain years of Cerebral Palsy had inflicted upon me. A good outside bet would be my neck and shoulder area, a recent but respected pain that could hold its own against the big two. On a good day I would feel pain in one of these places. On a bad day, all three would take over my body.

I just dealt with the pain. It was a part of my life. Period. I was skeptical of future operations, physical therapy. "Special shoes" just made me grimace as I took that as a sign that I needed help in order to be like everyone else. So I begrudgingly accompanied my mother to a shoe store in Miami, after she had seen someone in the street with these "special shoes."

The guy in the store seemed ok. He seemed normal. He noticed how I walked (it’s hard not to!) and within seconds he had a pair of z-coils that suited me. I tried to explain to him that my legs are not the same size, leading to me walking on my toes with my right heel in the air. He went into the back room, put a lift into the right z-coil and rotating the coil according to my personal requirements.

I put the shoes on. I took my first steps in the z-coils. I was taking small steps around the store, while taking giant steps in my walk away from pain. My face beamed with amazement, freedom, disbelief and gratitude. I had two new feet. Looking in the mirror, I could see my shoulders were the same height! I was able to put an equal amount of weight on my right foot as on my left while remaining upright.

Several months have passed since I first received my z-coils. I now wake up each morning without any pain. I no longer get tired while walking long distances. My z-coils have given me a new lease on life, a life I never thought was possible.

Benjamin Bloom
Sunny Isles,Florida

NOTE: Ben placed #11 at the 2004 National SCRABBLE® Championship in New Orleans

No comments: