Hello family and friends, on September 7th my husband Brendan Town was diagnosed with Surfer’s Myelopathy. It is a rare, non-traumatic spinal cord injury that causes paraplegia, or paralysis below the waist. The injury is caused by hyperextension of the back.
The symptoms started out as a mild discomfort on the lower back, similar to a pinched nerve, but it quickly deteriorated to numbness followed by paralysis to the lower half of his body. The disease itself is rare so there are no standardized treatment options as of yet. After the MRI, he was diagnosed and then airlifted to Queen’s Hospital with a knowledgeable neurosurgeon team to begin treatment.
He has undergone an angiogram and lumbar drain procedure to reduce swelling and to confirm the MRI reports on the spinal cord. We are still waiting to hear back from the doctor of more detailed result but considering he still has small feeling to his lower half we are very hopeful he will make improvements with the help of good rest and physical therapy.
Brendan Town is a sweet and caring man. Grew up in Woodstock, GA throughout his childhood years and moved to Atlanta in his early twenties. From there he has been a focal point around the restaurant scene as a wonderful local bartender / restaurant manager. You may have seen him behind the stick at some amazing places like Top Flr, The Lawrence, Miracle Bar, Staplehouse, Cold Beer, Holeman & Finch, and more. He has always had a love and compassion for taking care of others and we are so grateful that the wonderful community and friends he's made is now taking care of him.
These funds will be used to cover medical and travel costs associated with getting back home, healing, and getting into a good rehabilitation center in Atlanta.
So far the total coming from the treatments and medical billing is $25,000 which I’m sure is only going to get bigger as this goes on.
We can’t express how grateful we are for this wonderful group of friends, loved ones, and family. Thank you for being in our lives.
Good morning from Hawaii,
We have a flight leaving this Monday, arriving Tuesday morning!!! Family is ecstatic and Cho and I are so happy to be coming home. This vacation has been wonderful and we are so exhausted now and ready to see our animals, friends, and family again.
Got my own wheelchair and slideboard now! Looking forward to putting ridiculous stickers all over it like my work water bottles. Wish they had better options for colors, perhaps I'll work on some personal highlights later on when I am back in good shape.
Working hard every day on the Physical Therapy and gaining some sensation in the legs! Still not able to wiggle my little piggies yet, but I’m hopeful. Been reading more on baby books right now to prepare myself for upcoming parenthood. We have Cribsheet, which is a data driven 21st century guide to parents. Also been ready Baby Brain, which focuses on the neurological development of mothers and babies during pregnancy. Such a fascinating read. Thanks to the ICU nurses for that recommendation.
Looking forward to being a dad and giving all of myself to my wife and baby boy. I can’t wait for it.
Thanks for everything y’all. Much love and hugs!
Today has been quite a whirlwind of a day.
I have taken part in more Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy and feel that I am getting stronger with every single task. The therapists here at the hospital are so loving, fun, and engaging. I had quite the workout with them that left me exhausted.
As it currently stands I am in stable condition and working on my endurance for the flight home. I am feeling confident that we should be coming back to Atlanta sometime this upcoming weekend. We are looking into our best course of options with flight availability and rehab facilities that will keep me close to my loved ones and friends.
I feel blessed that my workplace, Indigo Road Hospitality, is doing everything they can to assist during this matter. I’ve never felt so cared for by any job like this. Thank you Indaco / Indigo family!
I am so grateful to have my wife next to me during all these stressful times. I feel that we are navigating uncharted territory in deep water for ourselves and we are keeping each other afloat. She is learning just as much as I am on how best to take care of myself. She’s quite resolved. I feel so lucky that she makes me laugh and cry over the silly things in this world. Like having a lil mini cute photo session of myself while I’m asleep or making sure that eating enough “yummy” things in the day. I can’t wait to see her as a momma. She’ll crush it.
Looking forward to being back home and enjoying all the wonderful food Atlanta has to offer. You’d be surprised, Hawaii has $8 tacos!!! $5 if you’re lucky and they don’t compare to what we got back home! Don’t get me wrong though, I’ve crushed pounds of fresh marinated poke here over the past two weeks haha.
Much love to y’all!
On this wonderful day I have officially been moved out of the ICU!
A little catch up on PT / OT, I have been able to move myself completely over to a wheel chair without much assistance! Yayay! Core balance is excellent and we will be working on general care for myself and how to get around.
I have had the spinal fluid drain removed and am now resting up in general care. No more crazy wires and IV's all over.
My goal is to be able to withstand the 8-9 hour flight back home by the end of this week. Once back home I will be starting in patient physical therapy that will help expedite the process of my healing and being able to walk again.
The greatest healing therapy is friendship and love.
Thank you all so much for being in Cho and I's lives. We love you all so much and cant wait to see you.
By the way, for those of you that don't already know... Our family is growing by 1 in February! We are going to be having a little baby boy!!! We found out the gender over our time here in Hawaii!
photos on IG
Thank you everyone for all the love and support. It brought so many tears to my eyes with the overwhelming love from you all. I’m so happy and lucky to have my friends and loved ones.
I’m going to be posting updates here and on the IG.
Started OT & PT today so I’m very excited and hopeful. Can’t move the legs still but I was able to move myself into the chair! They told me it’s a big deal so I’ll take that as a win.
Drugs are kicking in and not feeling the spinal pain as intense.
They gave me yellow socks, favorite color, total score.
Get to order food all throughout the day, though appetite is a little low. Great lilikoi cheesecake and kahlua pork. Hawaiian hospitals crush it.
Nurses and doctors are so helpful, kind, and supportive.