Kate WilletteNormally, I’d have spent the last few months tracking spinal cord injury research. I’d have done my thing with new peer-reviewed publications, sifting through the jargon with a pen in one hand and a medical thesaurus in the other, multiple laptop tabs open to university and corporate pages. Every time I’ve produced an article for this magazine, it’s been the same process, the same effort to first comprehend and then translate what’s happening in the worldwide effort to repair damaged spinal cords.

I write with an imagined “you” in mind — “you” being the person I was when my husband broke his neck more than 19 years ago. In a way, I am always speaking to that confused and anxious version of myself: It will be OK, but not right away. Here’s what you need to know, and here’s what you can safely ignore. Here’s who you can trust. Here’s th