new to the  forum and wanted to check in. some of this is from my parents as i was 6 years old when i got polio. i went into the hospital in portland the same day the first shippment of the salk vacine arrived in that city. latly i have had to face some bad experiences i had growing up. post polio has made it impossible to ignore longer. i remember the ride in the ambulance from one hospital to the other a spinal tap, but most of all how lonley isolation was. in 1955 there was no tv in hospital rooms, at least mine. i didnt understand why i couldnt be around even my parents. i would listen for my mothers shoes on the floor of the hall way. i always knew when it was her the sound was easy for me to pick out. she would stand at the door and talk to me, it was the highlight of my day.  the nurses were flat mean i really didnt see much of them. twice a day i got a pennacilin shot and yes i know a virus cant be cured with any antibodic. but this was 1955. I dont have a copy of it anymore but my picture was in the portland paper as one who went into the hosp just as a cure was available. i remember it well as it was taken with the family pets including a rabbit. somewhere there should be a way to find a copy but i dont know how. anyway enough of ancient history. now i have lots of pain problems sleeping and did i mention pain?  left leg has always been a problem i could be walking or trying to run and it would just colapse.  other health problems are 2 heart attacks and now a pace maker defibulator.  arthritis in my fingers are telling me i need to quit and maybe add some later if anyone is interested. joe gifford

forgot to mention sometimes my computer mis-spelles words

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Joe -- Please check your inbox for a private message.

i look forward to it. my e-mail address is   i now live in selah washington maybe i could call you sometime in the mean time lets chat via e-mail or private messages.

Joe, click "Inbox" above on the upper right, a little below "TELL YOUR STORY".

checked and nothing in my inbox as of 10:17pst

hang in there Joe.  And welcome to Polio Today.  I think you will find many things interesting if you go back to the forum's history and read the various converstions.  I hope this site brings you comfort.

it has been a bit startling to find out so many had simular expriences. i have learned a bit


If I can be of any help I'm here for you as are so many.  If there are questions, they most likely will be viewed by many and replys will be numberous. All you have to do is ask.

How are the PPS symptoms?  Are you able to function?

You'll find countless stories in "tell your story", some are very interesting and some how they helped me. I have had PPS since 1994-96, when PPS was just a quiet little secret. I've learned to slow down and I have also learned to cope.  Both of which are necessary for success of this disease.

Take care my friend. Write if you'd like.

Joe you really had me laughing with your last comment, thank you for that. I have to agree it is the same for me, every computer I touch seems to mis-spell words!

I was three and a half years old when I was stricken with polio in Northeast Georgia, October 1959. At first I was diagnosed with having the flu and later when I could no longer hold down food and my legs would not cooperate with me and my spine began to stiffen, I was rushed to Warm Springs Georgia. That right there was my blessing. I was sent to the Warm Springs Foundation Hospital founded by President Franklin D. Roosevelt (he and Dr. Bruno, I would have to say are heros to me). From what I can remember, the staff was great but the pain was incrediable. I seem to recall by this time the polio epidimic was over and there were only a few of us in the hospital at that time. My parents and the rest of my family would visit when they could (we were a poor family and Warm Springs was a good distance from my hometown.) but when they had to leave I would cry my eyes out. To this day I seem to have an "abandiment complex" Well seriously, it does seem to be a problem. Anyway, I was treated at Warm Springs for about 3 months. I too recall a bit of publicity about my recovery. Our local television station broadcast a short piece of me learning to walk with crutches and leg braces. Some years back I wrote to the Greenville SC TV Station to ask if they might have a copy in archives but they said it was doubtful. With your picture having been in the newspaper I think there is a better chance if the paper exists that they may have it archived, it couldn't hurt to investigate the possibility.

Unfortunately, it appears that if anyone was affected by the polio virus (no matter how minor it was) then post polio symptoms will likely begin to show up with the aging process. Are you still employed full time? I am now 57 and have been working at my local community college for 33 years but the PPS has finally caught up with me and even though I need to quit work completely, I keep procrastinating even though I am rapidly going down physically, mentally and psychologically. If you are working, you may want to consider retiring. For me I'm hoping I haven't waited too long for I want to keep my independence for as long as I can. People who haven't experienced what we have seem to think, "What is the big deal, live with it and keep working." Yep, I've actually had people tell me that and not one seems to understand the fatigue I feel when I tell someone I am too tired to do something. Take care Joe and listen to your mind, heart and what is best to keep your independence. God bless.....-James-

God bless you both.  God bless us each.  We have had much to endure but we shall and we will be stronger for it.  Look ahead not at fear but as knowledge.  Spend your days not weeping but longing for tomorrow.


i retired at age 45 not because of wealth but because i had a whopper of a heart attack.. a bit of background.. i got married and had a wife and 3 kids by the time i turned 21,( i know no one is supposed to do that) anyway instead of welfare i went to work for prudential insurance company and was with them for just under 25 years when i had the big one. I was one of the lucky ones i had disability insurance and still do. health insurance and a good woman to help. next october it will be 20 years of disability.  one of the first things i did when i got out of the hospital was decide i was not going to live like so many who sit in front of a tv set and go down hill. i had a hobby not very pliitically correct i was a target shooter and still am. bought a lathe and mill and learned a bit of metal working. because of the fatigue and pain i cant work for very long at a time but i do a little almost every day. i dont like taking pain medication but with out it i couldnt and wouldnt want to go on. last year was a bummmmmmer i had another heart attack in febuary son got into accident andhad spleen removed found out i have cancer i have been told it is gone and am hoping they are correct. then wife got into an car accident she was hit by uninsured driver and fianlly wife had knee replacment surgery kinda a bummer year. i have never been a whiner when i posted the first time i was really down everything had come down on me and i have never been depressed before for more than a day. i really had a couple down weeks and finally dug myself out with some help from mike o"malley and others. i am back enjoying my hobbies, and my family. one thing i try to be is a positive person. not the kind that stickes their head in the sand but one who is a realist. i always knew i was not going to pass a physical to be a fireman or policeman so i just made the best out of it and worked to support my family.... fingers are hurting so i gota go for now i am not going to proof read so hope i dont sound like a total loser.

We are not loser's.........none of us.  This site is suppose to be a support group site and being such I think it allows us to vent not from being a wimp but mostly I think out of frustration. Most Polio victims are strong personalities and I for one am one of them.

Our stories are much the same James....though I did not have a heart attack.  I did have a tremendous fall and my body when into they say.  Apparently from the trauma itself I begain a rapid onset of PPS when I was in my mid 40's. Within 6 months I was fully braced.  Fully, i.e. neck both wrists, back and from feet to thighs and then came the wheel chair.  I did not have the strenth to work and gave up a most wonderful career.  You see my mind started slowing way down to the point of a turtle. I could not remember things, people or places.  To me it was the worst part of the PPS.  As I slowed way down so did the PPS systoms.  Now I do not use any form of bracing nor my wheelchair and life it good. I am a "young" 66 and decided it was time to make a difference in this world so I applied for and got a 6 year old foster child. She is my beginning and funny as it seems I can keep up with her.  It's been a very long haul, but I'm doing it. God bless you and your family James

Welcome, Joe!




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