Saturday, December 18, 2010

Common Questions from Newly-Discovered Scoliosis Patients

Many people with Scoliosis email me through this blog and I must say, thank you so much for your emails and thank you for reaching out to a fellow friend with Scoliosis. For many of us, the questions that plague us are similar, although we may not know that.

Here I will try to lay out some questions that are most common, usually coming from those who have just discovered about their condition, or from those who know that they have Scoliosis but have not received treatments of any form for their condition.

Q: Where do I go to check my Scoliosis? Who do I see?

A: It is most usual and advisable for a Scoliosis patient to see a medical doctor, a specialist who specialises in spine. There are many orthopedic specialists out there, but I personally would go for a spinal specialist right away because they have sub-specialised in treating the spinal cord. There are many spinal specialists now in Malaysia, be it in government or private hospitals. If you choose a private hospital, you simply call in and set an appointment. I am not too sure about government hospitals, but nowadays I suspect you could do the same (call in and inquire about making an appointment with a spinal specialist).

You will need a referral letter from any doctor (just go to any clinic and tell the doctor that you have Scoliosis, and you need a "referral letter" from the doctor which specifies that you have Scoliosis and need to be checked by a specialist). This referral letter will be given to the specialist on the day of your appointment (you could make several copies of the letter if you choose to go to several different specialists to get more than one specialist' opinion).

Q: What happens during the first hospital check-up?

A: If it is your first check-up, they will send you to do x-rays on your spine. From the x-rays, the specialist will then tell you the condition and severity of your curve (the shape of your curve, single curve or double, non-severe, moderate, severe, etc.) and the degree(s) of your curve(s).

Q: What are the treatment options available?

A: The specialist will explain to you the options available to you (physiotherapy, bracing, surgery, etc.). He/She will recommend the treatment options for your specific condition.

But as a patient please note that there are other treatment options available as well. Many private clinics are available nowadays that provide physiotherapy, chiropractor services, acupuncture, and so on. Here's one example of such clinic. There are a few others out there, so please do your research. My knowledge of these treatments and the clinics available out there is limited, but for those who chose alternative treatments other than those suggested by your spinal specialist, please do intensive research before deciding on the course of action suitable for you.

Q: Will I need to go to surgery?

A: Again, this depends on many factors. It depends on the severity or seriousness of your curves, it also depends on your financial abilities, personal preference, and so on. For some, surgery might be the only solution (as I believe it was my only solution because my upper curve had exceeded 100 degrees back then).. but it may not be necessary if your curves are not severe, and if your spine does not get in the way of normal day-to-day living. Again this is my personal opinion on the matter. Even if your specialist suggests for you to do a surgery, noone can force you to take this step unless you yourself choose to do so.

Q: Will I feel better if I have a surgery?

A: No one will know for sure! Surgery is not a miraculous solution, it is not the end of the road that will heal all pain and problems. In my situation, surgery was necessary, but remember.. living with Scoliosis is a life-long condition. Choose a treatment option that suits you and your condition.

Q: Should I go for physiotherapy or bracing?

A: This is again up to your doctor, and you. The situation differs for every patient. Do not give up and keep trying. For some, physio and bracing work well. For some, surgery may be the answer. Some might even choose to forgo all these formal treatments provided at the hospital and opt for alternative treatments (chiropractor, acpuncture, etc.). I did physio and bracing for two years in my teenage years and it did not help me much as my curves were very progressive. But I know some people for whom physio has worked wonders in decreasing their pain and improving their daily lives. I also know of a few others for whom bracing worked well in containing and improving their curves. So in my opinion, it is really a matter of trial and error... and a lot of faith and luck as well.

Q: What if I do not get my Scoliosis treated at all?

A: Yes you can choose to do so. But in reality, if you have Scoliosis, you cannot run from the fact that it is a lifelong condition that you have to live with forever. At some point of your life you may feel discomfort or pain while doing daily activities. When or if this occurs, you must realise that it is necessary to take actions. Even the simplest action like exercising more to ease your daily pain is a good action!


So there you have it.. the most common questions that I get asked about by those who have just discovered that they have Scoliosis, and those who have not had any treatments for their Scoliosis.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Of Little Achievements

This year has been full of unexpected things.

What I mean is.. things that I didn't expect to be able to do as a person with scoliosis (and having had two surgeries already)... have materialised, much thanks to Allah.

You can read about them here.

I ran (more like brisk-walked and half-jogged!) and finished 6 marathons in the past 6 months :)

This week I went for a RPM / spinning class and I am super-excited about it. Never once in my life did I imagine that I'd one day have the ability to be a regular gym-goer.. and to be able to attend exercise classes, just as if I am fully normal. Praise God.

To my scoliosis friends our there who are going through hard times and feeling as if normality is so much out of reach.... please have faith. Have faith in yourself. Have faith in a Higher Being (whatever your religious believe might be, it doesn't matter.. have faith in a higher power..). Have faith, stay strong, and don't give up on the hope that one day normality will be within your grasp and in your life once again.

Trust me. I didn't even think I could walk again. Whatever negative feelings, depression, frustration, helplessness, anger, envy, hopelessness that you may feel... I've felt it too. And sometimes on bad days, the feelings still come knocking on my door.

And to my scoliosis friends who are living the very much sought-after normal life we often hope and pray for..

Let us say thanks and cherish these moments.. one day at a time :)

For who knows what tomorrow holds for us...?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Only a professional physiotherapist can or should be allowed to design a tailor-made physio program for any Scoliosis patient. Every curve is different, every patient is different.

As a teenager, I saw the physiotherapist at UH (now more commonly known as UMMC) a few times so that she could update my physio-exercise regime. The odd thing though, back then, regular physio sessions weren't really the priority. If I recall correctly, I saw the physio once when we first discovered my scoliosis (at 12 years old). She gave me several exercises to do twice or three times a day (or more often if I could manage it) on my own at home. Then about 6 months later my Dad insisted we saw the physiotherapist again, so they gave us another session but with a different therapist. About a year later, Mum asked them if we needed to see the physiotherapist again, but they said there was no need.

To this day I do wonder if things could've been different if they put equal importance on both physio and bracing instead of just emphasizing on the importance of bracing to contain the curves because research now shows that in many cases bracing made no difference.

Now patients have more options and have more voice. We SHOULD remember that we have a voice and we have the right to ask questions and voice out our hesitations and doubts. If your doctors do not give your voice much attention, that is simply unacceptable.

A lot of young people with Scoliosis are going for regular physio and in some cases bracing isn't the main emphasis (depending on the individual cases and the doctors handling the case). So hopefully there are now more ways for us to live more comfortably with our curves and handle our pain better.

Okay back to physio.

Does physio help? I am not a trained professional, but I am a Scoliosis patient who's lived with it for 20 years. So yes, I believe physiotherapy helps.

In terms of whether it helps reduce the curves, I cannot say because I have no real knowledge, no personal experience or authority to say such things.

But in terms of pain management, physiotherapy exercises do help most patients manage their pain better, I believe.

Everyone is different and have different opinions, of course. What I felt was that although there might be some discomfort or pain when you're doing the exercises, the spine and back muscles do feel a whole lot better after you've done the exercises.

So in conclusion, if you have pain due to Scoliosis, looking into physiotherapy might help you manage your pain better.

Guilty As Charged

I've been guilty for not blogging often enough. Guilty of not replying to comments and emails soon enough. My deepest apologies for that. Always.

Life's demanding and don't we all know it. Everyone's singing that same song now.

I'm going to be selfish for a minute here and update on my progress.

Since starting the gym and having a trainer who designs the workout programs to fit my curves and needs, I've lost 6 kilos and it feels great. Not specifically because of vanity purposes (heck, who am I kidding, right? A girl's has needs to be vain!), but mainly because I feel lighter and healthier. My spine really does feel stronger.

I am absolutely serious when I say I have never felt this strong in my life.

Strengthening the back muscles have helped tremendously in improving my quality of life. I can now help my son onto the throne, or even into a supermarket trolley (I couldn't do this before because my back would ache badly afterwards). I can now get on my knees to scrub the kitchen floor (although being pampered by good ol' husband is always a good thing to have, LOL). And I can now pray like a normal person with little limitations. Rukuk, sujud, duduk tahiyat awal and akhir.. they're all doable now. This is super awesome to me because I haven't been able to pray this way since I had the implants put in during the first surgery in 2002.

I still take it slow and am always very careful before doing a strenuous activity, but regular exercise and training has given my scoliosis some miraculous progress and improvement.

Okay that's enough of the me-news. Now on to something else.


Lets talk physiotherapy.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Basic Exercises for Scoliosis Patients

As a person with scoliosis, the primary goals of an exercise program for your spine should be to make the muscles of your back, shoulders, and upper back strong and flexible. (Quoted directly from this site) As your back muscles become stronger, your back will feel less tight and more flexible. In many cases, once your back muscles become stronger, your pain might decrease or at least become more manageable.

This site indeed has some good basic exercises for scoliosis patients, aiming to strengthen your back. They even have videos showing how the exercises are done.

Please bear in mind that you should only proceed if the exercises do not cause you discomfort or pain. And if you're worried, do talk to your doctors first. However, I've tried the exercises and found that they're light exercises, aimed to make strengthen your back and make your back feel good. They are not to exercises to 'correct' your curves, but they do make my spine feel more flexible and less taut/tight.

IMPORTANT TIPS for those just starting to exercise:

- Start slow. For instance, start with a 15 minute walk at moderate pace. Then slowly build up as you feel stronger. You could increase to 20 minutes at faster pace, then 30 minutes, and so on.
- When doing weights, start with light weights. I started off with just 1 kilo weights. Build up as you go, but never to the point of feeling pain on the spine.
- "Tingly" or "prickly" sensations around the back muscles when you first start your exercises is normal. But stabbing pain on the spine is NOT normal. Stop immediately if you feel any pain on the spine!

Lastly, I like what this site says about scoliosis and exercise:

"Scoliosis is not related to flexibility issues or lack of strength. Scoliosis does not act as a deterrent to normal physical activity. Children and teenagers with scoliosis can participate in sports and recreational activities. They can even perform normal exercises that help build muscle strength and endurance. They can even train to improve their cardiovascular conditioning like normal people."

Friday, May 14, 2010

The Importance of Strengthening Your Back Muscles

I have so much to share but there is always so little time in a day!

But I've got a piece of good news and new discovery to share with my fellow scoliosis friends. Alright, maybe this discovery is not so new for some of us out there, but it is to me :)

About two months back, I discovered I had some free time in hand while the son is at playschool. So I decided to join the gym and get some serious workouts done.

I've always been a big believer in exercising. As a teenager I didn't really like physical activities because I was teased in school for wearing a bulky body brace, and for being so clumsy and not well-coordinated enough. Things were emotionally hard back then, so I didn't participate in sports much. If I had a regret about scoliosis, that would be it. I let the teasing and my lack of confidence get in the way and I wasted precious years not using vital parts of my body.

It wasn't until I was in college that I started brisk-walking and swimming on a daily basis in an effort to lose weight. I didn't lose weight much, but I was in good shape and felt good about myself. I had my first surgery within months of finishing my degree, and as soon as I could walk, I got my Dad or my then-boyfriend (now my husband) to drive me to Kiara Park so that I could walk. At first I walked so slow that everyone stared and wondered what was the matter with me. And at first it took me nearly 30 minutes to complete one round around the park. But I kept walking, sweating in my singlet and post-surgery body braces, not caring about those stares and whispers. And to this day I am glad I ignored them all!

Six months later I was out of the braces and walking 5 to 7 rounds (I took the big and uphill routes too) every single day. I had lost 15 kilos since the surgery and feeling good about myself.

Throughout my postgraduate studies in Melbourne, walking was my major exercise. A couple of years later when I felt super-strong, I started buying aerobic and strengthening workout videos to do on rainy winter days. I hiked a lot too on weekends and holidays. Hence I maintained my weight until I got pregnant with my son four years after my first surgery.

During my pregnancy I gained 16 kilos but kept active. I tried to workout three times a week throughout the pregnancy. After giving birth, it got hard to stick to an exercise plan. I was working and we were moving house, then the implants got infected and I couldn't walk for half a year. I started walking again when my son was 18 months old. That was when I decided to restart a workout schedule.

I walked at the park 5 days a week, 30 minutes each time. But it wasn't sufficient. My spine, and back muscles still didn't feel strong enough.

So now I've joined the gym. And to make full use of the gym, and to build strength on my back I have a personal trainer to train me twice a week. So every week while my son is at school (he goes to playschool three times a week), I'd be at the gym. Aside from that, I make sure I work out on my own home equipment three times a week. In total, I try to work out 6 days a week, about an hour to 2.5 hours each time.

And lo and behold, I am amazed at the strength that exercise can give us!

By us, I specifically mean us with scoliosis condition.

For the first time in 8 years, I am praying normally (standing up, with abilities to bend and prostrate as I wish). I can lift groceries, I can even lift my son (although I don't make a habit of it), I can bend down to look for things under the bed.. and so much more. My back muscles feel strong and capable of living a very-nearly-normal life. Praise God.

So what is my point here??

The point that I am trying to make is.. don't give up!

When you have scoliosis, some days the pain can drag you down. Some days it doesn't seem as if you will ever be normal or live normally. Some days there are just so many things that you cannot do.

Fight it.

Fight the pain. Exercise.

Go ahead, try it :)

Start with walking. Just walk. Go to the park and walk. Move your arms in silly ways that make you feel good and ignore those evil-starers. And don't stop for 30 minutes.

Stretch when you're done with your walking. Stretch your legs, your arms, your back. Be careful, but stretch. And feel good about your achievement. Because this will be the start of great benefits.

There are specific exercises to do to help strengthen the back muscles. I'm not talking about strengthening the spine or exercising your curves. What I mean is, if you concentrate on strengthening your back muscles (those muscles surrounding your back area), you can minimise discomfort and pain, and you'll also find yourself feeling stronger and better about yourself.

If you're unsure and need help, do talk to your doctors and physiotherapists. Ask them about suitable exercises. If you can find it, find a trainer with experience in aiding scoliosis patients.

In the following weeks I'll take some pictures and talk about the back exercises that I do, for the sole purpose of sharing personal experience and giving an idea of the benefits exercise can give scoliosis patients.

Is there anybody out there who have inspiring stories of fitness or strength-related discoveries to share? We still have much to learn about how exercise can benefit our scoliosis condition!

Friday, March 19, 2010

The Importance of Diagnosing Scoliosis

I always believe that you are the expert of your own body.

Many people with Scoliosis out there have been diagnosed and have received treatments, or receiving treatments right now. But there are also many individuals out there who suspect, or know that there is something wrong with their bodies. With their spines. And everyday they live in worry or pain or even fear, because they are unsure of what to do.

This might come a little late, but lets look into some definitions of what "Scoliosis" is. Before I begin, again please bear in mind that this site is not a medical site. All contents are based on personal experience, personal research and personal opinions. So please forgive any mistakes on my part and I welcome inputs from better-informed individuals :)

This wikipedia article gives a simple but thorough explanation of what Scoliosis is.

From the article, we concur that Scoliosis is a medical condition in which a person's spine is curved, from side to side. The two common curves for Scoliosis patients are usually either "S"-shaped curve, or "C"-shaped curve.

The first thing that Scoliosis patients must realise is that every two patients' curves are not the same. The curves, its severity, its degree, and the discomfort or even pain that a patient goes through is not similar and alike to all other patients.

Lets take a look at the different curves pictured below.

The illustrations above show the different types of Scoliosis curves. Curves can be thoracic (upper spine), lumbar (lower spine) or even thoracic-lumbar (involving both the upper and lower spine). Patients with Scoliosis might have a curve curving to the right side of their bodies, or to the left, or both (in S-shaped cases). Some people have slight curves which some doctors would choose to monitor, or treat with bracing. Some people have moderate to severe curves that require bracing or even surgery.

The point that I am trying to make is that each person's Scoliosis is unique.

And this leads me to the next point...

This unique reason is why it is very VERY important to get proper diagnosis for your Scoliosis.

By proper diagnosis I mean a diagnosis made by a spinal specialist, a doctor who can tell you exactly what your curves look like, how un-severe or severe it is, and what treatment options are there for you specific situation.

My friends, going to the doctor and hearing their explanation can sometimes be a daunting prospect. Scary, even. But getting a proper diagnosis for your condition is vital because only then you can decide which course of action to take for yourself.

Noone can force you to wear the braces or have a surgery. Not even a frightening-looking doctor. Forgive me, dear doctors; please know this is not a personal attack on doctors as a whole!

What I am trying to say is that it is important to know the reality of the situation you are facing, and what might lay in the future for you if actions are not taken.

Don't postpone your diagnosis. Don't postpone hearing your treatment options. Because one day you may very well regret it.

Today your condition may be treatable. Today your condition may allow you to live like a normal person.

But ten years from now the pain may be severe. Ten years from now the curves may have doubled. Ten years from now you might have to resort to corrective treatments which could have been avoided if you are treated now.

Trust me on this. I know this because I've made that mistake before.

Back in 1994, they said I needed a surgery. My curves were about 50 degrees back then, and although I did experience some pain on a daily basis, it wasn't anything I could handle.

By 2002, my curves had progressed to between 80-95 degrees each. I had a huge hump on my back (I looked like the Hunchback of Notredam), clothes didn't fit well at all, and worst of all was that I had pain every single day. It hurt to exercise. It hurt to breathe sometimes (because the curve was pressing against my lungs).

In life there is no "should have", "could have" or "would have". You cannot look back and change things even if you wanted to.

So.. as daunting as it may seem... go get a diagnosis.

And then, where you choose to go from there is entirely up to you. Noone can force you to do anything you are not willing to. But this is something you can do for yourself.

You can learn the truth and deal with it now, rather than kicking yourself in the hind region perhaps ten years down the line.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Tips on Wearing Body Braces to School

Many have asked me about how it is like for a teenager to wear braces nearly 24 hours a day. Many have also asked for advice on how to make braces-wearing easier.

The truth is that I cannot speak for all patients who've experienced bracing. I can only speak of myself and share my experience with others. And because each of us has somewhat different experiences, that is why it is so important for us to share stories and information... because maybe our stories and experiences would be useful and insightful to others who are going through similar situations.

So lets talk about wearing braces to school.

This is Malaysia. It's hot, humid and sticky here. Tourists come here to parade around in sleeveless or shorts and bikini tops.

The last thing any girl (or boy) wants to do is wear a hard, thick plastic corset under those warm layers of school uniforms.

Our friend Twilight Princess (I hope you don't mind me quoting you here) mentioned that she wears the SpineCor brace. I Googled it and this is what I found.

Apparently SpineCor braces are dynamic braces which allow more flexibility in movements as compared to older braces made of hard plastics and metal.

But let's face it. The truth that we cannot deny is that no matter how "flexible" or "dynamic" braces are... braces are still braces.

Braces brace your body. They have a job to do. That job is to hold your spine in place, to ensure that your curves are managed and not worsen.

The following is a detailed photo of a SpineCor brace.

These photos are put here as illustrations to show what we have to put on our bodies. These braces made of synthetic materials which should be worn above cotton singlets or cotton t-shirts should ideally go underneath your day-to-day clothes because noone really wants to go around wearing braces over their day clothes. So that's how I wore it; I wore a cotton singlet under the braces to help absorb sweat and minimize abrasion on the skin, and over the braces I wore my normal clothes. So when I went to school, I wore my school baju kurung above the braces.

I'm sure seasoned braces-wearers know all this already ;)

Okay, so below here are some tips on wearing braces to school on a daily basis. Anyone out there who would like to add their own tips, please feel free to add to this content in the comment box. Thanks!

  • Choose comfortable, absorbent camisoles/singlets or thin t-shirts (preferably ones that are body-fitting) to be worn underneath the braces. Loose singlets/t-shirts are less comfortable because the braces are made skin-tight (molded to your body) and if you wear a loose undergarment, they'll create folds under the tight braces and once you start sweating, the folds of the clothes could eventually cause discomfort and itchiness. So try to look for cotton singlets that cover all surfaces of your body which the braces covers. As shown in the pictures above, the girl is wearing a nice fitting t-shirt which covers all the parts of her body that the braces covers. If there are parts of your body which comes in direct contact with the braces, it can be quite uncomfortable because sweat could make skin in that area become red and itchy.
  • Do have a soothing balm or lotion at hand. The braces could cause redness and itchiness on your skin, and you will feel this mainly when you take off the braces. I personally used a lot of aloe vera gel and vitamin E lotion. Sometimes I had rashes because of the heat and sweat, and I found that putting on medicated powder before you put on the braces, and then putting some aloe gel after you take off the braces (on the red areas created by the tightness of the braces) seemed to help ease the rash. Of course different stuff works for different people. In time you'll find what works best for you.
  • Bear in mind that there are just some activities that are somewhat too uncomfortable for you to do with braces on and it's okay to admit this to the teachers. School is a hot and uncomfortable place most days for braces-wearers. This may seem like an unappealing or embarrassing idea, but letting your teachers know your condition can be very very helpful. Granted, as a teenager I did use the scoliosis excuse to get out of unpleasant activities such as playing netball under a 40 degree sun.. (hahaa) but the reality is some teachers can be supportive and helpful. And the ones who aren't should be ashamed of themselves! Hehh.. that's the reality of life, folks. For instance, when I was 13 and 14 years old, I was in the evening session. On Mondays we used to have "perhimpunan" in the courtyard, right there under the hot afternoon sun. Sometimes the heat just got too much for me and I had to ask to sit at the canteen, out of the sun. Yesss I will not deny that being singled out made me feel like a freak sometimes, but it was better to face the reality of the situation rather than making a scene of fainting right there in the middle of the perhimpunan! Right? So... do try to realise what you can and cannot do, and don't be ashamed to admit it.
  • Try to arrange for an occasional "time-off" period for important sports activities and such, if necessary. For instance, for sports activities (what we used to call as PJ; Pendidikan Jasmani, or for extra-curricular activities), my mom used to allow some "time off" from wearing the braces. You could say those were the highlights of my days ;) For extra-curricular activities (house practice, sports society/club and such), I'd leave the braces at home, Dad would send me to school and fetch me afterwards, then I'd wear the braces again once I got home. PJ was another different matter though. It was tough convincing my parents to let me go to school the whole day without the braces, so after much sulking (on both parts) we reached a compromise. I joined the class for PJ in the fields every alternate week. One week I'd be allowed to go to school without braces on days that had PJ classes. Then the next week I would have to sit in the shades while I watched my friends play netball because it was too hot and uncomfortable for me to join any strenuous exercise activities with the uncomfortable Milwaukee and Boston braces on. Why is "time-off" an important option for you to consider? Because wearing braces should not mean that you must stop your favourite activities or put your life on halt. It's important to continue pursuing your hobbies, just remember to plan your schedule, and plan ahead.
However, with the recent developments in braces-making, more dynamic and flexible braces such as the SpineCor brace shown above would mean that scoliosis patients could participate more in physical activities. If anyone has experience in this, please share your experiences with us.

And then there's of course the issue of your emotional state of mind when wearing the braces to school. But that's another story altogether, so we'll talk about that in another entry.

So do share your tips, people. Braces-wearing doesn't have to be a miserable, imprisoning ordeal if we manage it well, God willing! :)

Friday, March 5, 2010

Of Hopes and Dreams of a Scoliosis Patient

Today I finally managed to see Dr. Azmi of HUKM at Pusat Pakar HUKM. In reality I realise there is little need to see the doctors now that the implants have been taken out and I've gained full recovery. But to appease my ever-worried parents (and spouse), I chose to go over, at least for a chat.

And of course, there is that main underlaying reason that has been nagging at me for years. The hope and the dream of building a support network for young Malaysian with Scoliosis.

In hopes that they would not feel alone and know there are many others out there like them. In hopes that one day Malaysians would be aware of Scoliosis and respect (and understand!) those with this condition. In hopes that one day no young person has to go through what I personally went through as a teenager with Scoliosis.

The man who had skillfully operated on me and changed my life, Professor Muhamad Razak, does not hold clinics anymore. So off I went to see Dr. Azmi, the man who was there for my second surgery (implant removal) back in 2008. And here I will unabashedly admit that Dr. Azmi was also the man who had to tolerate my blabbering nonsense of chaos and panic back in that brightly lit operating theatre, as all my inner demons had surfaced then and reared their ugly heads.

We had an encouraging chat. The good doctor is supportive of the idea for a Scoliosis Support Network. I am hopeful that one day soon it will become a reality.

I am told that there is no need for an annual check-up, no need for anymore x-rays, no need for anymore physiotherapy, as long as I experience no pain on a day-to-day basis.

I very nearly got a lump at the back of my throat which had to be swallowed back (hard) upon seeing Prof Mat's scrawl of "Fully Recovered" right there on the last page of my file. If you've gone through 20 years of scoliosis treatments, pains and problems as I did, and I'm sure many of you out there did.. I'm sure you'd understand that there are moments when triumph and gladness can cause those lumps-at-the-back-of-your-throat to occur :)

Praise God. Dare I say that after 20 years, I can now live as normally as any other ordinary Jane can. Live without the fear of the curves digressing, without the fear of further surgeries, without so many nagging fears that I'd rather not go into right here, else I'd sound like a constantly whining ungrateful witch.

This blog had always been about my personal experience, and yet thus far I'd restrained writing in a very personal manner, as an attempt to stay objective on the subject of Scoliosis.

But lately I've realised, there is no separating Scoliosis from my personal emotions and wellbeing. Scoliosis is in you, it makes you the person that you are because you live your whole life with it and you can't run away from it. If you're a scoliosis patient, scoliosis is you.

This is not a site of a medical expert. My opinions are shallow and from the perspective of a Scoliosis patient, 31 years of age, first diagnosed with Scoliosis at the age of 12.

I will continue writing on things that are relevant to all Scoliosis patients out there, in hopes of reaching out through sharing of information and personal experiences. And I hope those of you out there will share your experiences with me as well.

Because this can be the start of something great.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Apologies for Hiatus

Thousand apologies for the long hiatus from this blog! I think about this blog often, it's just that time hasn't been on my side lately due to personal reasons. I don't get really personal in this blog because this blog is supposed to be dedicated to topics related to scoliosis. But I suppose one can't avoid the "personals" sometimes. To make a long story short, life at home has been challenging and yet enlightening for a few months now since our maid ran off. And yes, that's the reason why this blog has been neglected for so long and all the comments left unreplied. Again, my apologies.

I hope the year will bring more productiveness and that this blog will not be neglected again. God willing :)