Mom just told me that the UMMC doctor said dad can walk, he just doesn’t want to move. I told mom not to believe her.

Unfortunately. I am all too familiar with these doctors. That happened to me when I had my spine surgery at KLGH in 2002.

After Neurosurgeon Johari Sinegar removed multiple tumors along my upper thoracic spine, I couldn’t sit or stand. When I propped the bed higher and higher to sit up on my own, one of the doctors who I suppose was the MO said to me, “What’s the use of sitting up when you cannot even walk?” The doctors and nurses said that I was lazy.

They wanted to discharge me even before the physiotherapist could work with me beyond simple bed exercises. Mom yelled at the doctor and asked him how could he discharged me when I could not even walk.

He buckled up and allowed me to stay on. Then the physiotherapist could continue to work with me. Two of them needed to do it together. One carried me and held my body upright. Another bent down to hold both my feet in the standing position. My soles could not even feel the floor when we started. I felt like floating and was afraid of collapsing.

They did this a couple of times before giving me a walker. With the walker, the physiotherapist clung onto me and the walker closely as we walked to make sure I did not fall. It hurt so much to walk but I recovered all thanks to the physiotherapists.

So when doctors in this country say that you are lazy, they just want to be done with your case as soon as possible. Don’t let them pull down your self-esteem.

Categories: Caring For Dad

Yvonne Foong

As a child, Yvonne Foong dreamed of growing up to help others. To achieve her ambition, she began studying to become a psychologist. But things changed when tumours were discovered in her body at the age of sixteen. She was diagnosed with neurofibromatosis type 2 -- a genetic illness with no cure. Fighting for survival, Yvonne turned to fundraising and embarked on a medical odyssey to the United States. Her experiences since then have transformed her into a motivational speaker; inspiring hope, faith and strength. Yvonne is currently working to establish a humanitarian foundation that provides NF patients in Malaysia with financial and logistical support. Visit Works of Gratitude to learn more.

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