(The following passage has been excerpted from my previous blog.)
Recently, I have lived through a series of very severe health issues relating to my nervous system. I will most assuredly go into greater detail about this matter in subsequent blogs, as these medical nightmares have dominated the majority of my life and attention for more than a year now.
But allow me to offer a very quick summation -- in April 2018, I suffered a sudden, freak incident that involved the peripheral nerves in my arms and hands. I had been having some slightly annoying and befuddling difficulties with my hands for months -- tingling, slight numbness, and occasional troubles with guitar playing that were highly unusual for me. I was alarmed, but the problems were intermittent and by no means severe enough to warrant a DEFCON 1 response on my part.
Disaster seemed a long way off, until suddenly it wasn't.
I went to sleep on April 10, 2018, and woke up in the middle of the night with no feeling in my hands whatsoever. Even the very sensation of having hands was completely gone. In the place of hands felt like dead weight -- almost as though someone had sewn the flesh of a cadaver to the ends of my arms. These lifeless and foreign bodies just dangled there, unfeeling, and for the most part, unmovable. At first, I believed they were just "asleep", but despite my best efforts, they never woke up.
For more weeks than I can even count, my hands were completely numb, useless, and dead. To be sure, this condition would be unimaginably terrifying for just about anyone. But for a guitar player (especially one who was not only planning on releasing a long-overdue album, but was also hard at work on a brand new record), this was an especially dark corner of hell in which to reside.
It took many months of fighting with everything I had to finally regain the use of my hands, and eventually, reacquire the ability to play guitar.
I still have some problems with pain and numbness -- and may eventually require some surgeries -- but I can play again. I'm still recovering, so while certain missteps in improvisations like the one in this video certainly do bug me, I'm still in the process of learning to be patient with myself. And I have to constantly remind myself that it was only one year ago that the idea of ever being able to play guitar again was utterly unthinkable.