Thursday, April 15, 2010

L.E.A.P. "The L"

On June 25, 2007 I had my right ankle fused at a 90 degree angle. The days following that surgery were extremely painful due to the fracture blisters that I had developed. Additionally, for the first time in a very long time, I felt somewhat sorry for myself for a number of reasons. First, as a result of the severity of my surgery, I was in a tremendous amount of pain for quite some time (really until about 3 weeks ago). Secondly, as I laid on the couch in my "man cave" watching Big Brother and various other reality shoes on my DVR, I felt as though the lives of my family and friends were going on without me. Finally, it was during this summer that I interviewed for, and missed out on a job that I really wanted. Fortunately for me, I took a gamble on a job that gave me an opportunity to work with a great group of people and thankfully it helped lead to where I'm at today. The other positive that I will take from the summer of 2007 came in the form of a short read that I continue to reference to this day, and brings me to the topic of today's blog post.

Those of you that know me well, know that one of my favorite books, if not my favorite book, is The Radical Leap by Steve Farber. The book is a business parable and speaks to how to become an "Extreme Leader." The story is told through the eyes of Steve, and it chronicles his interactions with two very interesting individuals, Edg and Pops. The word LEAP serves as an acronym, and today I would like to discuss the L, LOVE, and what it means to me in my daily life.

At this point, I know what many of you may be thinking, "I thought this blog was meant to chronicle Otis's road to recovery, and this is beginning to look more like a book review." I hope you bear with me for just another moment. I want to share a line from the book, to be exact it is on page 165 in my copy, on the first page of the A Daily Handbook for Extreme Leaders, found at the end of the book:
"Without the calling and commitment of your heart, there's no good reason for you to take a stand, to take a risk, to do what it takes to change your world for the better."
This brings me to today and where I'm at in my recovery. As I've mentioned before, for the better part of the last six and half years I've struggled with my right leg/ankle. This struggle only seemed to get worse as each surgery passed, and since that ankle fusion in June of 2007, the pain that I experienced was constant. Between the lack of mobility and function, and the increasing pain, I desperately needed to take a stance, a risk, and do something to change my life for the better, which I did on March 15, 2010.

Today, I stand before you (or crutch, or sit in my wheelchair) feeling much better. My spirits are up, my head is clear, and for the first time in a long time I'm truly excited about what the future holds with my leg. This is especially true after my appointment yesterday with Mike at American Orthopedics. I was blown away by the care and attention he provided me with in beginning the making of my prosthetic. Additionally, I was blown away by the technology, I mean seeing Mike scan my leg with what appeared to be 2 video cameras and a bar code scanner, and watching an exact 3-dimensional replica of my leg appear on the screen of the computer was amazing. I can't wait to go back next week and test it out.

I'd like to wrap up today's post with some tattoo talk. I mentioned in my first post that I have a passion for tattoos, and I want to get my prosthetic tattooed much the same way that was shown recently on LA Ink. I would also like to add a little ink to one of my current tattoos. On my right arm I have a tribal sun with the phrase "CARPE DIEM" written in old english script underneath it. As you probably know, this is Latin for "seize the day." This motto is something that I have always tried to live by. I've always tried to have this positive outlook on life, in fact, I can easily say that I LOVE life and I thirst for more out of my life. Thus, I would like to add the phrase "SITIS PRO VITA" above the sun, which, in Latin, means "thirst for life."

I will return very soon with the rest of the Extreme Leadership qualities found in LEAP. So, until we meet again, take care, remain positive, and stay strong!!!


1 comment:

  1. This book is a must read for everyone! Farber is going to owe you some royalties when this is all said and done. Keep it up Mike! You are doing awesome. Stay Strong!