Mike contracted meningitis and septicaemia in 2014. The infection caused Mike to lose the use of his hands, arms, legs, and feet. Even the muscles in his face were temporarily paralyzed.
Now facing life as a quadriplegic, Mike says he would often reflect on his situation during his recovery.
“I had a lot of time to think, so I did a lot of meditation and mindfulness which was very helpful. There were downtimes, some pretty horrific ones, but I took each day as it came and generally I tried to keep my spirits up, concentrating on what I had not the things I’d lost.”
One of the things Mike still had was the ambition to return to work, something his doctors told him would be impossible. Before his diagnosis, Mike was a management consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP in Bristol, England, and he planned to return to that position once he was able.
“My ambition from the day I fell ill was to get back to work so I could see all this as a blip in my life.”
But his recovery was coming along slower than expected. He had spent several months in the hospital and had undergone 15 surgeries. Then he began therapy at an activity-based rehab centre, and his condition began improving rapidly. “I felt like I had lost everything and was getting nowhere but my first session changed my attitude. It felt like I was fighting back at last, it was good for the mind and soul as well as the body,” he shares.
Mike is now back to work as a consultant a couple days a week. He pushed himself through the curtain of despair his doctors had presented to him, and he’s come out the other side.
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