Saturday, February 26, 2011

Preconceived Ideas

I wanted to start this blog off on a positive note when it comes to the term disability or wheelchair-bound. For those of you who know my story, I hope that I have been helpful at smashing the mold when it comes to these two terms (Disabled or Wheelchair-bound).

Before my accident, I thought ending up in a wheelchair was a curse from hell. I imagined the state as of complete confinement. Having Multiple Sclerosis (MS), I was bombarded with thoughts of being in a wheelchair which would slowly take my life.

Friends, work and play gone forever. Then 08/02/2005 came and changed my life forever. First and foremost, I gave my life to Jesus Christ and due to a combination of side affects from medications being used to treat MS; I drove my truck off of a 200 foot cliff shattering my L1 vertebrae and fracturing my T-12 and L2. It was God’s grace that spared my life.

I found myself at Northridge Hospital having spinal surgery and discovering a spinal cord injury (SCI) support group that meets each Thursday. There I was surrounded by people with similar injuries. Most notably, Anthony, who works full time in the medical goods company. He has this great, positive attitude and embodies a quote you will find on his business card “Never Say Never”. Anthony holds down full-time work, drives his vehicle with adaptive hand-controls and he and his wife adopted his son, Noah.

He took all of my ideas about disabilities and turned them upside down. But it doesn’t stop there. As I write this with one hand, my friend Janette, a quadriplegic, just graduated from CSUN. She typed out each of her papers with a pencil wedged between her fingers. So I have her as an inspiration to thank God each time I’m faced to write an E-mail or write a blog post. She has acquired work as a community reintegration trainer and is involved with an organization called WYNGS (When You Need Group Support). Devoted to helpingnewly injured adapt to their new living environment. I have countless stories I could tell you about. 

The point of this post is to transform your ideas about “Disability” and what can’t and can be done when you find yourself in a wheelchair. I found my place as an adventurer; Snow skiing, surfing, whitewater rafting, kayaking and surf kayaking. I thought my days were over as I became disabled. But I learned that
with God anything is possible.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Valuable, useful, fulfilled

I always felt lost just wandering through life, sometimes stepping on toes. I was always looking and not finding. I grew up in a broken home and didn’t feel valuable, useful or fulfilled. I suffered with my depression since I was 5 years old after my father left us and he put me in charge. 

 “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”  Psalm 139:14

Knowing that I am fearfully and wonderfully made and God does not make mistakes gives me hope.

"Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations." Jeremiah 1:5

 I like that he knew us in the womb and has incredible plans for our lives.