About

I never thought I would be hit by a car while crossing the street on my way to school at sixteen years old. I never expected to live with a spinal-cord injury. I was paralyzed. It’s a miracle from the Lord I’m alive and able to walk. I’m thirty-six, a professional, and fully independent. I walk everywhere with two forearm crutches and I’m learning how to walk with one cane. I hope to one day walk with no walking device. I want others to see how I overcame disability. I hope to encourage adults and children facing this problem by sharing messages, comments, and support. I’m an English as a Second Language teacher for a Global Language training company. I also teach classrooms at a Language center. I love what I do. I’m able to meet people from other countries and learn from their experiences. This is my tracking journal on how to overcome paralysis!

  1. TRILOKI NATH RAJAK
    July 11, 2012 at 12:29 am

    Hi, i’m also SCI patient suffering from T4-T5 level injury since 21 feb. 2010. PLS. Give me the tips how u overcome from the injury.

    • July 11, 2012 at 1:36 pm

      Hi Triloki, thank you for writing. The way I overcome is simple, but as you know Spinal Cord Injury is not simple! My faith in Jesus and His power to heal me, is what keeps me going each day.
      I make sure to exercise. Do your best to move, eat right, and get enough sleep. Always take care of your health.
      I know it feels like your injury was long ago, but it can take a long time to get better after SCI. Never give up. You can write to me with questions or comments anytime. I am here to help!

  2. James Gachago
    July 11, 2012 at 3:23 am

    How do you get the energy

  3. Marsha
    July 11, 2012 at 3:31 am

    Thank you for your story. My son is 26 and he became a quadriplegic at 18 from a car accident. He does have some toe and ankle movement but I’m trying to get him to get in more therapy for I believe he could move more with the therapy. How long we’re you paralyzed before you starting getting some back? Thank you

    • July 11, 2012 at 1:42 pm

      Hi Marsha, thank you for writing. Your son does have potential. Especially if his toe and ankle are moving, that is great! Do your best to encourage him to get into physical therapy, it really does work. You may not see results right away. Healing is a process. It doesn’t always happen as fast as we would like. My movement began in the first month after my accident. I was paralyzed, but my left leg started to twitch when I was in the ICU. It was my left quadricep. I was doing my best daily and fighting my legs to move. Let me know if you have any other questions..I’m happy to help!

  4. Lyndall
    July 12, 2012 at 1:49 am

    Zina, thank you for your encouraging account of your journey in dealing with spinal cord injury…I too have have a spinal cord injury T9/10…I am able to stand and with a walking frame put one foot in front of the other…its one of the hardest things i have ever done and I fluctuate between courage and continuing on with my quest to one day get out of this chair and just giving up….do you have any advice on overcoming the fear of falling?? how difficult is it to get around with arm crutches….my accident was 4 1/2 years ago.

    • July 12, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      Hi Lyndall. Thank you for writing. That is great, that you are able to stand in a frame, and put one foot in front of the other. That is a big step in your recovery. I will pray for you to continue on with courage to walk.
      It is normal to have a fear of falling. I have it too when I am on one cane. I mostly use it now when I am with my physical therapist. I do use it alone sometimes, but not much right now because I know my balance/strength still needs some work. Our healing is something we have to work at constantly. The most important thing is to be on a strict exercise/workout regimen. But always be safe. When you are trying something new like standing or taking steps, make sure you are gaurded. On my blog page, I wrote an article called “Moving Improves Our Health.” I would like you to read it.
      Walking with arm crutches is easy for me now, but it wasn’t always. Like everything, it was a process and I had to learn gradually. Years ago, I primarily used a walker. I had to build up enough strength in my gate, back, and trunk. It will take you some time, but the first step should be a walker. Well, feel free to write to me anytime..I’m here to help.

    • Lyndall
      July 16, 2012 at 7:34 am

      Hi Zina, thanks for your prompt reply…I would love to access your blog, but how do I do that?

    • July 16, 2012 at 2:29 pm

      Hi Lyndall. You should be able to see the link that says “blog” on my web site. If you can’t, try going to my web site page again: http://zinahermez.wordpress.com and you should be able to see the blog link on there. Let me know if you still have trouble finding it.

    • July 16, 2012 at 2:56 pm

      Lyndall – you can try this link too: http://zinahermez.wordpress.com/sci-faith-corner/ it should work.

    • Lyndall
      July 21, 2012 at 3:02 am

      Hi Zina, I am really thankful to have found your blog and find inspiration from reading what you have to say….at the moment I have not been able to access physiotherapy for continued improvement but I do have a personal trainer who works with me twice a week and we adapt exercises to help improve strength….my right leg has 100% nerve activation and functions normally but still has weakenessess….my left leg has made improvements but If i could just gain improvement in hip, knee and foot flexion against gravity then walking would not be so exhausting….i love working with my personal trainer as i am have fully exhausted when she leaves and i know that it is all working towards a healthier and more functional me…not sure if this is possible but if you have skype, I would love to chat face to face…I live in Australia so the time difference would need to be negotiated…what do you think??

    • July 21, 2012 at 4:10 pm

      Hi Lyndall, I’m so happy you find inspiration from reading my blog. It’s great to hear you love working with your trainer, and you are making such great strides. Keep up the good work! We can meet on Skype. My personal email is: zinahermez@att.net Contact me and we can arrange something for next week

  5. July 12, 2012 at 8:17 pm

    I met Zina several years ago at a BNI group meeting. Turned out I knew her brother and made signs for him and lettered his trucks for years. Anyhow, she is amazing and has shown and inspired many of us who do not have any physical limitations. She doesnt make anyone feel uncomfortable because she exhibits a sincere happy disposition.

    Tony Lucero, Eagle Graphics

    • July 13, 2012 at 2:21 am

      Tony, how nice of you to write, and with such kind words. Thank you so much for reading my story and visiting my blog. I am so touched!

  6. Clarissa
    July 12, 2012 at 10:08 pm

    You are inspiring!! My name is Clarissa and my husband Richard was in a mountain biking accident where he had fallen 35-40 feet off a cliff, he landed beachside in between several large rock boulders. Today he is alive and continues to exercise like there is no limit.
    It’s people like you and stories like yours that keeps us going. Faith is a big part of us! Richard suffered a fracture at c2&c5 along with a dislocation at c5-6. We were told that only 2 percent of patients was going to regain mobility to walk again. We never listened or believe the doctors as Faith is what’s going to bring us to our destination. You can track Richard story on caringbridge.com under richardrafanan with no spaces. Thanks for your story as we will follow and track you.
    Sincerily

    • July 13, 2012 at 2:25 am

      Hi Clarissa, thank you for sharing your husband, Richard’s story. What a miraculous survival! You’ve inspired me. I believe you both have the passion and attitude for recovery. There are no limits to what God can do. Patrick Rummerfield is a fully functioning quadriplegic, you should search his name – I was amazed. I’m going to follow your story. Let’s stay connected!

  7. July 16, 2012 at 3:53 am

    As soon as I observed this internet site I went on reddit to share some of the love with them.

  8. Janet Crutcher
    July 22, 2012 at 5:18 pm

    Hi~ My name is Janet Crutcher~ I don’t know how I ended up here but here I am. I have a Spinal Cord Injury at the T-12/L1 level due to a catastrophic car crash in July of 1996. I drove my self into a telephone pole, and still don’t remember any of it. I lived in Houston Texas at the time and was life flighted to Herman Hospital. I was so broken up I had to wait 3 weeks before the surgery to repair my spine with a rod and pins. Since I could not move my legs at all I was labeled with a ‘complete’ spinal cord injury. My doctors came in my hospital room one day to give me that news, I didn’t accept it. They sent me to TIRR for rehabilitation. I started to come out of my shell there. After a month I went home to my apartment with relatives in how to help me learn to live all over again. People started to marvel that I was taking care of my self. Well I still use a wheelchair full time. I still cannot move my legs or feet. If I think about the crash it takes my breath away. The journey has been a difficult one. I can’t believe I’m here sharing my life with yall. Must be a reason. I dunno. From: Janet Crutcher~

  9. July 23, 2012 at 9:33 am

    Would love to constantly get updated outstanding weblog!

  10. August 1, 2012 at 5:23 pm

    Hi, I do believe this is an excellent blog. I stumbled upon it on Yahoo, I will come back once again. May you help other people.

  11. August 10, 2012 at 2:44 am

    I read some of your posts as I celebrated they were very useful very helpful

  12. August 14, 2012 at 9:49 am

    Rattling wonderful information can be found on this web blog.

  13. August 21, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    I’m not certain the place you are getting your info however good topic. I must spend some time finding out more or working out more. Thank you for excellent info I was looking for this information.

  14. Deepak
    August 22, 2012 at 6:58 pm

    Hi Zina, on saturday my brother met with an accident and suffered D5-D6 burst fracture and undergone surgery on Wednesday, can u please share how many are the changes of him walking again..???

  15. August 23, 2012 at 1:25 am

    Hello Deepak, i’m very sorry your brother had an accident. Do you mean T5-T6? I don’t know his injuries so I can’t say for sure but I believe there is always hope for recovery and to walk again. You can read two articles I wrote in my blog page and see how bad my injuries were and I walked. My article on Spinal Cord Injury Zone and a more recent post, “A few quick tips on how I heal” should be helpful for you guys. Please let me know if there is anything else I can do. My personal email is zinahermez@att.net Take care!

  16. August 24, 2012 at 2:01 am

    I like this website very much so much superb information.

  17. August 28, 2012 at 7:35 am

    Really thankful for this post, how can I compose that I receive an alert piece of mail when you engrave a pristine article?

    • August 29, 2012 at 2:04 am

      Thank you Sennik, you can enter your email in the “follow blog via email” box above

  18. August 29, 2012 at 2:31 pm

    This website is mostly a walk-via for all the information you wished about this and didn’t know who to ask. Glimpse here, and you’ll definitely discover it.

  19. September 2, 2012 at 6:37 pm

    Great post but I was wanting to know if you could write a litte more on this subject? I’d be very grateful if you could elaborate a little bit more. Cheers!

  20. September 6, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    Hello. Great job. I did not imagine this. This is an excellent story. Thanks!

  21. Andrew Pelt
    September 13, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    I like this site so much, saved to bookmarks. “To hold a pen is to be at war.” – Francois Marie Arouet Voltaire.

  22. September 13, 2012 at 3:18 pm

    Some genuinely grand work on behalf of the owner of this site, perfectly outstanding subject matter.

  23. September 18, 2012 at 1:45 am

    I truly treasure your piece of work, Great post.

  24. September 18, 2012 at 1:41 pm

    Zina, nice job on your blogs! You are truly a role model for those injured and non-injured. I have known Zina since college and have been able to see her transition from the wheel chair to the crutches. I’m very proud of her and all of her accomplishments. And love most of all her never give up attitude. Not many people can see the good in every thing that happens, but Zina always does. Keep up your hard work and nothing is ever impossible. I do believe that one day you will walk independently with your 1 cane.

    • September 18, 2012 at 4:54 pm

      Lisa, thank you so much! You have always been a good friend and so supportive throughout. In all the years I’ve known you, you have encouraged me. A true heartfelt thanks Lisa!

  25. September 19, 2012 at 2:58 am

    Hello. I was just wondering if you have facebook? perhaps we could follow each other, become friends, etc.

  26. September 19, 2012 at 11:17 pm

    I am continually searching online for posts that can benefit me. Thx!

  27. September 24, 2012 at 11:05 pm

    I’m glad to see that you’re addressing this important topic in such a straightforward and easily understandable way. Best wishes. I’ll be back.

  28. October 12, 2012 at 5:13 am

    Hi Zina, I have a son who was hit by a car and in a coma when he was only three years old. It was wonderful of you to write this article.

    • October 12, 2012 at 1:10 pm

      Hi Susan, Haiping told me your story. Thanks for stopping by. I really look forward to meeting you and Billy. Until then, let’s stay connected.

  29. William
    October 13, 2012 at 10:07 am

    It was the same way when I got hit but now I am better that was 20 years ago. It was in the summer of July of 1992 I had faced many challenges in my life.

    • October 13, 2012 at 12:35 pm

      I know. I heard your story. I’m glad you’re better now, so am I. Thanks for your message. Hopefully we can all get together and meet soon. Stay in touch.

  30. Lawler "Juan" Kirk
    December 5, 2012 at 11:13 pm

    It was a pleasure bumping into you the other day. You are a beautiful Soul, I am blessed for having the opportunity to meet you.

    • December 6, 2012 at 11:37 am

      Juan, thank you so much! It was great seeing you. You’re doing even better than the last time I saw you. Keep it up. It will be nice to stay in touch.

    • Juan
      December 6, 2012 at 2:22 pm

      With Souls like you on my path, it gives me energy to push forward with my healing challenge. Your name is perfect; Zina, to me seems like a spiritual warrior angel who has come here to help people fight the good fight. Go Zina!

    • December 7, 2012 at 11:33 am

      Thank you Juan. I love that :-) If I can help anyone get better, I’m happy. Your comments help me get better too.

  31. December 10, 2012 at 11:42 pm

    Thank you for your positive attitude its great to see. I dont know what exercises to exactly do. I am waiting on a standing frame to be approved and I loved standing on that forever! I was told I would not walk and that the way my neck is put back together is completely bent the other way which causes pain and evenually without surgery will cause me to become a quad. I am working on that right now but through a divorce I will be losing my primary insurance and I dont know exactly what I am going to do for the long run. I need help and advice so bad. I could use some wisdom from you or others who have commented. I so want to walk again. I got in a car accident and the surgeon goofed and compressed my disc causing the paralysis. I have children who have to live in other places right now while I try to get my life together I dont know how. But thank you for your blog. I appreciate it.

    • humblejuan
      December 11, 2012 at 6:43 pm

      Greetings Caryl,

      I was also in a bad car accident about six years ago. I would like to extend my help in any way I can. Please feel free to e-mail me at humblejuan@yahoo.com

      Sincerely,

      Lawler “Juan” Kirk

    • December 11, 2012 at 7:51 pm

      Hi Carol, i’m sorry to hear you are having so much trouble. It’s really unfortunate you had a surgery that went wrong. The standing frame is a great way to start to get return of blood flow, strength in your legs. I hope you get that soon. If you get a physical therapist or trainer, they can design exercises tailored to your needs so I highly recommend that if you are able to. I’m not a doctor or surgeon so I can’t give you advice as far as surgery, I just hope it gets corrected. I know for me, I was told different things by different people sometimes that were not true. For example, I was told using one cane would be too hard for me – today I am practicing with one cane and hoping to be able to walk around with just that.
      So if you believe you will have the ability to walk that is faith, hold onto that! I’ll send you a personal email and we can keep in touch and exchange more ideas. Thank you for writing.

  32. Nellie
    February 24, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Hi. I have never blogged before and I just had my injury in feb 2012. I kinda feel really lost right now. I am a Christian and have been one since 1992. My feelings are all over the place. One minute I have the joy of the Holy Spirit and have Faith but then there are days that all I do is cry. I had fell on ice helping an ill ol lady and ended up fracturing my L4-5 disk. The disk was pinching a nerve which caused me lots of pain. I went to the hospital like 3 times before they said it was a pinched nerve. So I get referred to a neurologist, he says I have to have a simple operation and all he has to do is shave a disk off the nerves and I should be fine. During the operation my aourda was severed. The doctor calls the helicopter to tranfer me to mass general in Boston. They made it there in 12 minutes I was not suppose to survive but by the grace of God I did. Now I have nerve damage on both legs and I can’t walk. It hurts to walk I’m always in pain. I do get around the best I can a few steps here and there but I cannot walk more then 3 minutes. If I sit I could get up and do another 2 minutes and that’s how I walk. The doctors said I have a spinal cord injury. I’m just wondering if I’m ever going to walk again. I’m not a fighter right now I seem to be just gaining wieght now that I’m not moving around and I need some kind of motivation. I guess I’m very depressed. I do pray all the time but I need help!

    • February 24, 2013 at 7:59 pm

      Nellie, I’m so sorry you had an accident and that things have been so tragic for you. It’s unfortunate how things happen sometimes. Please never give up on faith. Even if you can walk for three minutes I would say that is amazing. Even if it hurts, then you are not paralyzed. God loves you as he loves me and all of us. I could never promise someone whether or not they will walk normally but the fact that you can walk at all is very positive. I know I walked again with walking device, but it was through a lot of hard work and my faith.
      I think it will be helpful for you to follow my blog. I post articles every few weeks to share with others with or without spinal injury. I started it to help cope with my SCI. It has been therapeutic for me. My hope is that it helps others who visit. I’m going to send you a personal email so we can stay in touch and be friends. I’m pulling for you, and praying for you as well!

    • February 24, 2013 at 9:28 pm

      Greetings Nellie,

      I was in a car accident in 2007 and I have not been the same since. Please hang in there! There is something in your story that can help others.

      I have a similar challenge with my walking, my cervical was severely damaged in the car accident and my sciatic nerve was also damaged just name a few of the things I was diagnosed with.

      When I walk for several minutes now my feet sting, burn and I have electrical charges that go throughout my body. But as much of a challenge as I have now, I am blessed because I get to share with you and say hang in there; You Are A Gift From God!

      Much Love,

      Juan

      P.S. Please know that all the following emotions are okay: Crying, Screaming, and most important is Laughing!

  33. Nellie
    February 26, 2013 at 8:57 am

    I’m so happy to have found this blog. I feel like I’m smiling as I read this. I don’t feel so alone. PRAISE GOD!!! Thanks for your kind words Humblejuan and I’m so sorry to hear about your accident. Zina thank you for all your support as well and the emails. Well I’m hoping today is going to be a productive day. I’m going to a store that sell products for the handicap to make life easier for us to get around. I’m just praying its not to expensive. I was given a walker and a cane. I think the one that holds both arms would be better for me a regular cane is scary I feel like I’m going to fall. I’m kind off excited to be leaving this house it’s been so cold and so much ice outside I’m so afraid to go out. I need to ask God to take away my fears. Well off I go this morning to do some shopping just waiting for my daughter. I’m so blessed to have met you all may The Lord bless you and keep you all under His wing. God bless

  34. June 20, 2013 at 8:23 am

    May god bless you I have also suffered from this situation when I was 17 and now however I am stable I hope god helps us to fight this situation

    • June 20, 2013 at 3:01 pm

      Thank you Joe, and may God bless you too!

  35. DallasTexas Personal Injury Attorney
    July 19, 2013 at 4:54 am

    Hi Zina,

    You are truly an inspiration. Your optimism and your faith is what heals you. I am happy to hear your stories. There are many people who needs your words of encouragement. I’ll share this with my friends who have been victims of personal injury.

    • July 22, 2013 at 8:17 am

      Thank you very much!

  36. Mike Williams
    October 21, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    Hi Zina:

    My 17 year old son is a recent (May 2013) paraplegic. He is walking with forearm crutches and has even challenged the PT to let him walk without any assistance. He is determined. His biggest concerns are the feeling that everyone is looking at him when he is in public. We too have ice in the winter and think your blog will help him. He hasn’t reached out to the SCI community yet and wonder if you might suggest a method to get him to find out whose there to talk and support with. BTW, he has is own individual PT, his MOM, who I am finding to be incredible in his journey.

    • October 21, 2013 at 10:11 pm

      Hi Mike, I can relate to your son’s concerns. I was around his age – 16, when my accident happened. It is great that he is so determined. As far as reaching out, please feel free to let him know about my blog. He is more than welcome to write to me or subscribe. I will send you an email with networks, foundations, or on line support that I know of to further help in his healing journey. It is wonderful that his mom is his PT. It sounds like he is already making a lot of progress!

  37. November 19, 2013 at 10:44 pm

    Hi Zina Praise someone understands.You are inspirational, I was just in a auto accident.T5-T6 other injuries.My wife and I were missionaries in Africa and Europe. I know the Lord has other things for us. Thanks again for your blog, Signed Brother in Christ Tom F. Siemer

  38. November 20, 2013 at 8:24 pm

    Hi Tom, I’m so sorry to hear you had an accident. I will keep you in my prayers for healing and recovery. Thank you so much for stopping by and reading my blog. God Bless…

    • November 21, 2013 at 9:10 pm

      Thanks Zina you are a real inspiration.The christians around the world need your inspiration. Thanks for you prayers. Robyn and I will be praying for you also. God Bless! Tom Melbourne Australia

    • November 22, 2013 at 10:05 pm

      Thank you Tom, that really means a lot. Thank you for your thoughtful comments and your prayers. Please keep in touch.

  39. December 17, 2013 at 10:37 pm

    Wishing you the best for a full recovery.

  40. Selvy
    February 7, 2014 at 11:45 pm

    Dear Zina,
    Thanks for your msg, My friend is T4 level SCI injury since 1993 (20years) he is paralyze and now going to do surgery for SCI and he is also doing PT continuously . We hope and pray one day he will stand from a wheelchair . I believe Jesus will bless him. We are going to do surgery soon, I will let you know, Thank you

    • February 9, 2014 at 10:10 am

      Hi Selvy, thank you for your message. You and your friend are in my prayers. I hope he has a successful surgery and the ability to stand. God bless…

  41. March 3, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    Great post! Dealing with a back injury now. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  42. Kessie Darby
    April 20, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    Hi, im also a SCI patient, suffering from T11-T12 level injury since March 2013. Ive regained my sitting balance again and have full control when I sit. Ive been doing exercises on muscle strengthening and trying to get myself to stand up. I have been trying my best to get my legs to move but they just twitch and at times move without me moving them. Tell me, when the first times for you to move your legs was it really difficult and how did u go about doing it? And I really appreciate what you have written and how you’ve helped others, its nice to know that someone out there is sharing this and wants to help.

  43. July 10, 2014 at 7:33 pm

    Hi Zina, I really want to say thanks for your blog it’s full of inspiration. I’m also a SCI patient suffering from T3-T4 level injury since 1998. After a lot of exercise I’m better. I appreciated all the tips you give to get better every day!!

  44. Salvo
    August 7, 2014 at 5:53 pm

    Hi Zina,

    I have had three surgeries on my thoracic spine. I am still able to walk but it’s been very difficult to do without pain and electrical signals. I can’t walk very far. I have had this condition since 2009. I don’t know if I will recover fully but I have faith that God will restore me completely. I just need to have trust that He will. Thank you for sharing your life. You are a blessing.

  45. tricia crider
    August 29, 2014 at 10:05 am

    Zina , I am also a sci my injury is t8. I deal with pain daily but use no meds only mind over matter. I am happily married with 5 beautiful children in which I conceived and birthed all after my sci injury in 1994. Life is full of blessings and challenges every day. Every day I’m thankful for the life I have been given.

    • August 31, 2014 at 7:28 pm

      Hi Tricia,
      Thank you for stopping by and writing on my blog! It was a blessing to meet you and spend time with you in the hospital that year in 1994. We were two young girls, and our lives had completely changed. I’m happy to see you with a beautiful family, healthy and strong. XO

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,265 other followers

%d bloggers like this: