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Matthew was in a lot of pain after an accident crushed his spinal cord and limited the mobility of his left arm and leg. For a man who was raised to work and play hard, it was a devastating blow both physically and emotionally. Looking back on that time, he wishes he had known about MOBE.
I didn't know how to talk to people about what was going on with me, so I kept it all bottled up inside. Once I started talking to Stephanie, my MOBE Guide, a huge weight was lifted because I wasn't trying to carry the load all myself.”
It's not easy to be in pain, let alone find someone who really wants to listen and understand. And yet that's what Matthew found when he decided to make that first call to MOBE. His friends and family didn't always understand what was going on with him, but Stephanie did. She also helped him see the big picture: not just the medical aspects of his pain, but how his choices affected the way he felt from day to day.
In the beginning, they had regular phone appointments twice a week. Since Matthew often went to bed at night with his mind racing about doctor appointments and medications, Stephanie suggested a new habit that might help: keeping a pen and paper by the bed and making a list of everything on his mind before lying down to go to sleep. He started doing it.
That little action - taking the time to put my thoughts on paper, has really helped calm my mind at night.”
Matthew knows it's going to take some time to feel better, to feel like his old self again.
I can't just get up and go for a hike like I used to, but working with MOBE has taught me to set simple goals."
"I aim for something small, like taking a walk around the house or helping with meals. Stephanie and I call these 'little gold nuggets', because every day I try to achieve one little thing instead of doing it all."
Those little gold nuggets give Matthew the confidence to keep going. He knows if he can push forward just an inch today, then maybe he can go two inches tomorrow. He knows if he's having a bad day or a rough time, he's got Stephanie to give him the support he needs and keep him on track to feeling better.
"When your body hurts so bad and you don't feel like doing anything, it's easy to do nothing," he admits. With MOBE, he feels like he's finally gaining ground. That means he feels more comfortable talking to doctors about his pain. He's setting small goals to increase his activity during the day. And he knows even though his recovery won't be quick and easy, he's got MOBE and Stephanie with him every step of the way.