Alexei Navalny shares photo, speaks of initial 'despair' when waking from coma

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny posted a photo of himself walking on stairs and spoke about his recovery after being poisoned last month.

Navalny, the most high-profile opponent of Russian President Vladimir Putin, is recovering in a German hospital after falling ill on Aug. 20 on a flight out of a Siberian city where he and his team were conducting a corruption investigation.

On the insistence of his family, Navalny was flown to Berlin, where the German government said he had been poisoned by a military-grade nerve agent.

A German government spokesman, Steffen Seibert, said Monday that the initial findings had now been independently corroborated by laboratories in France and Sweden.

The Kremlin has said they have not seen the results of the German investigation and insisted there is no definitive proof that Navalny was poisoned.

Navalny was kept in an induced coma for more than a week while being treated with an antidote. He said in an Instagram post Saturday that once he was brought out of the coma, he was confused and couldn’t find the words to respond to a doctor’s questions.

“Although I understood in general what the doctor wanted, I did not understand where to get the words. In what part of the head do they appear in?” Navalny wrote in the post, which accompanied a photo of him on a staircase. “I also did not know how to express my despair and, therefore, simply kept silent.”

“Now I’m a guy whose legs are shaking when he walks up the stairs, but he thinks: ‘Oh, this is a staircase! They go up it. Perhaps we should look for an elevator,’” Navalny said. ”And before, I would have just stood there and stared.”

He said the doctors treating him “turned me from a ‘technically alive person’ into someone who has every chance to become the Highest Form of Being in Modern Society again — a person who can quickly scroll through Instagram and without hesitation understands where to put likes,” he wrote.