“LSVT BIG is my miracle!”

I have recently been gifted the miracle of LSVT BIG by physical therapists Amy and Scott Bottomley at Stephens Memorial Hospital. For the last two years, I had been in a wheelchair due to balance and gait issues from PD. This last winter and into spring had been the worst for me, and I had all but given up. I came really close to feeling and looking as if I were going to die at one point. I lost any strength I had left in my legs and was stuck in bed most of the time. My wife was having a hard time helping me in and out of bed, getting to the bathroom or commode. I couldn’t cook or keep food down when I tried to eat. In six months, I had lost 70 pounds unexpectedly with no real answers as to why.

In April or May, I was in a bed or a wheelchair when I started 2 ½ months of home health physical and occupational therapy (PT and OT) followed by a couple of months of outpatient PT where I asked about the LSVT BIG program. The PT I was working with helped me to prepare by doing exercises. I was so excited as I already was feeling stronger by then. In the four short weeks of the LSVT BIG program, I went from using a wheelchair to go everywhere to now bringing a rollator with me for the seat if we walk a great distance, but it’s usually in the van for looks. I take the cane if I am unsteady, but for the most part I don’t need that either. I am climbing stairs, walking fast, and making big movements every day.

I have a confession, I have never liked exercise routines. If it wasn’t fun, I didn’t do it. LSVT BIG is my miracle! I know now that just as I take my medications on a regular basis, I need to continue with LSVT BIG! I must keep exercising; it is my other new medicine! This is the only way to look at it.

I was diagnosed around my forty first birthday, but on my birthday this year, the big 45, I gained my balance and a lot of mobility back. I am excited to want to share my hope with others! My passion in life has always been to help others, and if my story can help motivate one person to get up and move, then I know it can help others too!

Thanks again for my miracle!

-- Christopher B., LSVT BIG Graduate