Perspective II

21 Jan

Perspective; this word has a lot more meaning in the last couple of weeks. There is not a person here who isn’t looking at someone else and thinking; if only I could do that. If only I had my hands. If only I had my torso muscles. If only I had my legs. If only I had could walk. I know I roll around this hospital and people that can’t even use their arms and hands look at me and think I wish I could do that. I will admit I roll around this place and see a couple of people that have their legs and I think; I wish I could do that. I have realized in the last couple of days that we so often look at we don’t have and only see what we don’t. The interesting thing to me is that I know that I will always look at someone here who is walking and think: I wish I could do that. No way around it. I suppose I need to remind myself everyday of what I do have.

This weekend was awesome. Erika came into town this weekend. It was so nice to have here. I am positive that I had the biggest and widest smile on my face all day. One thing that was really nice was that we able to fit into my really small bed and take a nap together. Having the contact of her body against mine was beyond words. I will say it was the most free I have felt in a long time. We spent the rest of the time just hanging around watching football, playing cards, and going down in the basement with a chair. Having her here just lifted my spirits so much. She is here for a couple more days and I am so happy. Thanks for coming Erika.

I also want to give my ma thanks. It was the nicest thing she did for Erika and I. She made us a salmon dinner that Erika brought from Arizona, and set up a candle light dinner for us in my room. It was a small piece of normalcy in a place that is anything but. So once again, thanks. We really enjoyed it.

Other than that tomorrow is back to the grind of getting better. Speaking of me getting better; I wanted to let everyone know that my stomach muscles came back yesterday. I now have the ability to flex my stomach muscles. This is a huge improvement and I am hoping this is the start of the return of my body.

Have a great Monday everyone.




Posted by on January 21, 2007 in Previous Posts


37 responses to “Perspective II

  1. mb

    January 21, 2007 at 9:24 pm

    Wow! I wish I could flex my stomach muscles, but they just seem to jiggle! Awesome news! I’m so glad you and Erika are able to share some time. Get to work on Monday, Joel!

  2. Colin Laughery

    January 21, 2007 at 9:32 pm

    I just got home from Dad’s belated birthday cake, read the blog, and got some chills and tears of happiness bro. I know more awesome things are yet to come.

    -Colin 🙂

  3. Bry, Jess and Jamysen

    January 21, 2007 at 9:41 pm

    Oh my gosh Joel, that is amazing you are able to flex your abs!! I am thrilled for you.
    Also I am so happy for you and Erika. What a romantic and beatiful evening you both had. There will be more to come soon.
    Love you both, Jess

  4. Bry, Jess and Jamysen

    January 21, 2007 at 9:49 pm

    p.s. I heard you guys took a nap together Erika needs to sleep with you more often!!!

  5. bryan yates

    January 21, 2007 at 10:00 pm

    There are no words to describe how proud I am of you and how great the news of the weekend was. I know we got lot’s more good weekends ahead.

  6. Phillip Yates

    January 21, 2007 at 10:01 pm

    J-Love. Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Keep that kind of news coming. I got to tell you, everyone I know keeps asking about you and are giving you a massive amount of love from A-town! Lots of love and good vibes from Amarillo.

  7. Peter Scanlon

    January 21, 2007 at 10:38 pm

    Joel –

    Nice work! Bet it feels great to have such concrete progress to point to after all the sweatin’, huh? Awesome.

    Still, it’ll be a shame to hide those abs under a thick layer of beer, but some thing just have to happen. Four Peaks awaits!


  8. Bernadette and Gil

    January 22, 2007 at 6:01 am

    Truly you are amazing. AMAZING.
    So happy that you and Erika had such a nice weekend.
    And your mom…she is pretty amazing,too. I can bet the dinner was 5 star!!
    Dave was here yesterday and he said he’s looking forward to going to the Crush game with you. That should be fun.
    Here’s to another good week of hard work. Love to Erika for us.

  9. Amy Hansen

    January 22, 2007 at 6:12 am

    What a great way to start my day – with such good news from your post! Keep up the hard work. It’s starting to pay off. Enjoy the rest of your visit with Erika too.


    January 22, 2007 at 6:31 am


  11. Dan Zatkovich

    January 22, 2007 at 9:21 am

    I wanna see a six-pack by summer

  12. Debbie Royds

    January 22, 2007 at 10:08 am

    Good Morning Joel & Erika. It sure was great to see you both on Saturday. Joel – You are an inspiration – thank you for sharing your thoughts with us on your blog and for reminding us all to be thankful for what we can accomplish each and every day! Sounds like your Mom did your dinner up nicely – bet it had all the right touches as only she can do!
    How about those Colts – Wow, that game was a nail biter! Too bad the Saints lost. Hope you enjoyed the games.
    Great news about those ab muscles – most of us wish ours were tighter! God bless and keep working hard. We will see you and Erika again soon for a rousing game of “Apples to Apples”.
    Deb & Larry Royds

  13. John and Juli Begley

    January 22, 2007 at 10:13 am

    Hi Joel,
    What wonderful news! With your courage and the list of people who admire and respect you, it is clear you have so more than a majority of people as a whole. The Joel that we have all come to enjoy is not in your legs….but the Joel contained in the heart and head!! I always enjoy reading your posts and Jess keeps me informed as well. Erika is a lucky young woman to have such a determined and positive partner in you, and equally you are lucky to have the determination and spirit that Erika offers. Keep up the excellent progress that is happening on all levels. Determine you goals and reach for them little by little.

  14. Rich & Mary Hiegel

    January 22, 2007 at 10:14 am

    Morning Joel,

    That was the best news ever! So happy to hear you are beginning to feel thoes abs. Great things are happening and each week continues to bring amazing news.

    You mom was certainly special to prepare such a romantic dinner. Tablecloth and candles, ahh, what a nice break for you and Erika. She is certainly knows how to make a memorable evening.

    Today, you are back at work and all of us out here in computer land are wishing you a great week filled with small victories; all of which will add up to independence.

    Love ya,
    Rich amd Mary

  15. Dowd Family

    January 22, 2007 at 10:33 am

    Welcome back Erika. Once again the current ice berg we are living on is not typical.

    Great news about your stomach muscles Joel. Those muscles should really help your balance.

    Rory is as usual… tremendous. Joel… Please help Rory go into her email and set up a group list so she can easily connect with her buddies. I know you enjoy your blog. If Rory would send group emails to us, it would allow all of Rory’s buds to know what is happening with her. LD

  16. Brian Dietzen

    January 22, 2007 at 11:11 am

    Oh, when I saw the title of your entry was “perspective” I knew it was going to be good. Your view of the world is amazing man, and I’m glad that Erika and your mom are there to support it. Thank you.

  17. Matt

    January 22, 2007 at 12:18 pm

    Phenominal!!!!!! Congratualtions on the extrodinary progress!! I see a lot of messages on here offering words of inspiration, it is acctually you that is the inspiration Yates. Glad to hear that you and Erika had such a great and deserved weekend. Looking forward to rollin into D-Town this weekend and seein ya- If you can pencil me in with all your visitors!!
    Your kickin some serious tale Joel!!!
    Matt P.

  18. Janice

    January 22, 2007 at 1:58 pm

    Just read all the comments and ditto from me. I had a big smile on my face when I read the news about the stomach muscles. Keep up the great work and give my love to Erika and your mom.


  19. Dominic Lovely

    January 22, 2007 at 2:25 pm

    So excited to read of your progress this weekend! Keep it up.
    We’re thinking of you a lot.

  20. Lee Bentz

    January 22, 2007 at 2:27 pm

    So, Joel, didn’t want to admit that Abby gave you some good upslope competition on Sunday, huh? It was great seeing you and Erika again.

    I never thought I’d be so excited about someone else’s stomach muscles (since I’ve never been able to get excited about my own lack thereof).

    Work hard this week – who knows? It might be your butt muscles next.

    Erika, if you decided not to go home this week, give me a call if you want to do something Wednesday PM. (303-652-1350 or c: 720-289-6853).

    Love you both, Lee, Michael & Abby.

  21. Uncle George and Aunt Elna

    January 22, 2007 at 2:40 pm

    Great news about stomach muscles. Say “hi” to Erika for us. I’ll have to talk to your mom about how she planned your romantic dinner. She must have had fun putting it together. Don’t you just love naps. We are really in favor of them as we get older.
    Love and gentle hugs G and E

  22. Bill Wilhelm

    January 22, 2007 at 3:40 pm

    Dear Joel and Erika,

    Joel, your “Perspective II” posting today brought tears to my eyes. Your insight into what you do indeed have and your appreciation of it is a blessing. Erika, I am so proud of the woman that you are!

    The stomach muscles is terrific news, Joel. Kayaking in the Last Frontier is just around the corner.


  23. Eric Hansen

    January 22, 2007 at 6:20 pm

    AWESOME!!! Your hard work is paying off, keep pushing brother.

  24. Ross & Amber

    January 22, 2007 at 10:16 pm

    That is awesome! Ross and I have huge grins on our faces right now! We think about you everyday!! Keep on rockin!!!
    Love you!
    Amber and Ross

  25. Brandon and Erin Tancredi

    January 22, 2007 at 10:17 pm

    Great news Joel!!! Sounds like the weekend was a special one…keep up the hard work and positive attitude. We are sending good thoughts your way everyday!
    Brandon and Erin

  26. cuz paul

    January 22, 2007 at 10:53 pm

    Hell yeah my man. Naping with the lady + squeezing of the stomach = good times.


    January 23, 2007 at 5:19 am


  28. Janis

    January 23, 2007 at 8:00 am

    Fantastic about your stomach muscles. Who know what will come back next. Much love, Janis

  29. Sue Kammann

    January 23, 2007 at 8:59 am

    I work with your Aunt Janis in Minnepolis. I’ve worked with Janis for almost 15 years, and heard many stories from a very proud Aunt about her family. I’ve even had the thrill of playing Bunco with the Thurston sisters. It was a great time.
    Janis updates me(us) often on your recovery. I’m amazed at your determination and hard work. Keep it up.
    I wanted to let you know that there are many people in Minneapolis/St Paul, who you haven’t even met, who are pulling for you.
    I wish you all the best on your recovery,

  30. Erin Carson

    January 23, 2007 at 9:18 am


    It made me so happy reading that blog! Keep up all the good work and I wanna see some major flexing by the time I come! I can’t quite do the same thing right now, so I’ll live through you for awhile!

    Happy day Joel!

  31. Emily (Burden) Perrotto

    January 23, 2007 at 3:13 pm

    Welcome back Abs! It seems like such a simple thing but it is truly exhilerating. We all know you will begin to start showing them off soon enough. Your date night with Erika sounds so romantic. I hope you really wooed her – she deserves it. Way to go Rory – what a wonderful mom you are. Sending some sunshine from South Florida.
    Have a beautiful day!
    -Em & Joe

  32. Diane Kingsley

    January 23, 2007 at 10:51 pm

    Great news…just what I needed after a 12 hour work day. Maybe the candles and prayers to Our Lady of Perpetual Hope are working. I’ll keep praying and you just keep getting better. Let me know how the acupuncture works! I’m not a fan of needles, but if they work, that’s great. I know Vivian tried this for her siatica (sp?) pain. She’s going to have surgery next week – Neurologist is going to “clean out” the opening that the siatic nerve runs through to relieve the pinching. We all hope this works.

    I loved your comments on Perspective. So true. We often forget to focus on what we have and appreciate that.

  33. Laurie Marta

    January 24, 2007 at 3:37 am

    Hi Joel and Erika!

    What a beautiful and exciting weekend you had. Reading your blog made my day. I’m smiling with you over love and success.
    One day at a time growing in love and strength.

    Thinking of you, Laurie


    January 24, 2007 at 7:03 am


  35. Greg Crawford

    January 24, 2007 at 2:17 pm

    This is my first posting, but you’re constantly in my thoughts and prayers. I’ve been keeping up with your progress along with many others in Arizona.
    Kim and Emily say hi. Well, Emily doesn’t say hi, she just turned a year old so her vocabulary sounds more like what Clay sounds like really, really drunk.
    Spring training awaits your return to the Valley. By then it will be sunny and in the 70s, though the last few weeks we’ve had cold temperatures and some snow. Yes, it actually snowed in the Valley on Sunday with some accumulation in places. Obviously, nothing compared to Colorado.
    Keep your spirits up as it seems you continue to do. I won’t throw any inspirational thoughts your way as I’ve read many of them already posted to the site.
    Just know that while many of your friends haven’t posted comments or sent you letters, we still think about you often.
    And know we’re all very proud of you and looking forward to hanging out soon.

  36. Kim Bruno

    January 24, 2007 at 6:44 pm

    I never knew you had a romatic bone in your body…..nice.
    Oh and one other thing…..why would you ever go against DA BEARS. You know how we roll in Chicago…shame on you.
    Pam and I are so excited about your stomach muscle flexing and we have no doubt that it will lead to other things.

    Talk to you later,
    Bruno and Pam


    January 26, 2007 at 5:25 am



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