Overcoming Cerebral Palsy By: Trevor lulkovich

Bonner Paddock is 40 years old and fights everyday for life. However, Bonner has never let life go by and lives it to the fullest.
Cerebral Palsy is a disorder of movement, muscle tone, or posture due to damage in the brain. It often occurs in developing immature brains and before birth.
Bonner Paddock was diagnosed at a relatively old age for cerebral palsy to be detected at 11 years old. Doctors picked and probed at Bonner and couldn't seem to find what was wrong with him. After finally being diagnosed Paddock went to physical therapy constantly and determined this illness would not control his life. He was involved in as many sports as he could because Bonner just wanted to fit in with everybody else. Throughout school he never fully faced acceptance of his disease and it wasn't until the age of 29 he finally came out with it. In 2004 Bonner got a job with the Anaheim Ducks and later that year became a spokesperson for the disease. Paddock started running in marathons to raise awareness for CP and gave hope to others around the world. With running and climbing mountains came struggles for Bonner, as he did suffer from a disease. He often times fell and stumble over due to weakness in his legs and his equilibrium not being to par. Bonner Paddock continues to defy the odds of this terrible disease and inspire others that it does not have to control your life.
Unfortunately there aren't many tests that can detect cerebral palsy directly instead other broader tests need to take place. Sometimes, symptoms may occur then tests will take place. Some tests include MRI, CT scans, etc. Once brain damage is detected a series of electroencephalography (EEG) or electromyography (EMG) will take place to analyze nervous system function. Finally, bodily fluid tests are taken such as a blood or pee sample. However, in Bonner's case he started showing symptoms before all these tests could be taken on him as a child so he had to deal with the pain of probes and needles in his childhood.
Sadly, the treatments for this disease are as tricky as the illness itself because there is no specific answer. Bonner was told that Cerebral Palsy cannot be cured but to the extent of which it limits you can be somewhat reduced with hard work. There are many different medicines and treatments out there as this disease is well known, but Bonner chose to take the more natural route with intense physical therapy. Luckily, Bonner suffers from spastic diplegia CP which allows the individual to still be able to walk under their own two feet. Yet, Paddock was not satisfied with just walking and attended vigorous PT 5 times a week and continues to do so to this day.
Life can never be easy for Bonner Paddock or anyone with Cerebral Palsy, but as this one man continues to inspire numerous of others with this disease the struggle against it becomes a little easier. Technology is constantly evolving and research has never been better. Bonner continues to take on challenges in life and continues to fight back against his disease. Last year, Paddock climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro and became the first man with this or any kind of severe "disability" to accomplish this task. I cannot wait to see what the future years have in store for Bonner Paddock. It will not be easy, but nothing is with people who suffer from Cerebral Palsy.

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