Four months after suffering a broken neck during a tag team match, Big E addressed his ongoing recovery.
Speaking to ESPN's Marc Raimondi on Wednesday, Big E noted he's "grateful" after doctors told him he is expected to make a full recovery from the injury.
The former WWE champion did admit it was "very sobering" when doctors said the kind of fall he took could have "led to stroke, paralysis or death."
"I think to be great at something like [pro wrestling], or at least to be competent, you can't spend all your time worrying about possibly fatal injuries or breaking your neck," he said. "You have to go out there and be free and in the moment. I think a lot of us as performers don't spend a lot of time thinking about that stuff. I never thought I would be."
Big E tweeted on June 4 that his C1 vertebrae wasn't forming bone yet, and doctors will wait to see how his neck is progressing when he gets more scans at the one-year mark. But he will not require surgery.
On the March 11 episode of Friday Night SmackDown, Big E and Kofi Kingston squared off against Sheamus and Ridge Holland.
After Big E was knocked outside of the ring, Holland grabbed him for a belly-to-belly suplex. E landed on top of his head and later announced on Twitter his neck was broken, but he said he still had movement in all of his extremities.
Despite the setback in his recovery, Big E told Raimondi he hasn't really fallen into a "dark period" by not being at full strength.
"I'm so thankful for all the people who checked in on me and reached out, who have concerns. I'm not saying I'm perfect. I'm not saying every day is the greatest ever for me," he said. "But I really haven't struggled with that type of stuff."
The New Day member also said he has "no issue whatsoever" with Holland.
"He's reached out and said some very kind things. ... What we do is dangerous, and there are inherent dangers," Big E said. "And to that degree, we all kind of know what we sign up for, and it was unfortunate that it went down that way. But I'm not dead. I'm alive. I'm doing well."
The one-year anniversary of his next scan means Big E will be out of action until at least March 2023.
A former college football player at the University of Iowa, Big E signed with WWE in 2009. He made his main roster debut in 2012.
During his tenure with WWE, Big E has has held multiple singles titles, including NXT and WWE championships. He is best known for his run with The New Day alongside Kingston and Xavier Woods. The group has combined to win the Raw and SmackDown tag titles eight times.
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