Being Physically Challenged Shouldn’t Slow Us Down

In May of 1999 I had become severely injured from a motorcycle accident, where I had actually had died for four minutes. When I had awoken in the hospital after being in a coma I was given the news of my major injuries. I had lost half of my left leg, shattered my right ankle, fractured my neck, and fractured my back, blind in my right eye and too much more to list! I was also told some news, which I did not want to hear that I would not be able to walk again! Well words could not explain all the racing thoughts running through my mind.

After being in the hospital for months, I was sent to a geriatric facility as my apartment was not handicap accessible. During this time I basically was accepting the fact that I would not walk again. Basically what else can I do? During this time in the geriatric center I was given a laptop computer to help keep my sanity. Let’s face it, you can only read the newspaper so many times. I was also going through extensive therapy.

Going back to the computer, I basically knew nothing whatsoever about one. Maybe knowing only how to plug it in. Having the laptop really kept me occupied and made my days go by really fast. I starting using the help feature on the computer and began to learn a lot in the months I was in the center. I was also fitted for a prosthetic even though I was told I wouldn’t be able walk. I started taking one or two steps at a time in between the times I was working on the computer. I started teaching myself website design, which was a lot harder as they didn’t have the programs, which are so much easier.

I am now designing affiliate websites and will be donating a portion of all earnings from them to charity organizations. When I begin to earn more I plan on registering at my local hospital and see some of those who have injuries similar to the ones I have sustained. With my affiliate earnings I will buy something for these patients to put a smile on their face. If my earnings increase to a much higher level I would see if I could help some of those with some medical costs by making a contribution to it. So this would be one of my future goals.

Once I left the geriatric center I was able to walk a little with a cane and back to a wheelchair. I never realized that the things we take for granted can be such a task when we are injured. By the way, no one should call themselves handicapped, we are physically challenged! Some years have passed and miraculously walking around and have gotten pretty good at designing websites.

Despite whether I was able to walk or not this is something many of us can do. My words to all or you who are in a similar situation like me is to never give up! I thought my life was over after my accident, but it is just beginning.

Upon your initial injury you most likely avoid all outside help and do not want anyone near you, especially someone telling you something like “Everything thing is going to be all right”! That was one of my biggest mistakes in the beginning. I’m thinking about them in my mind “How do you know what it feels like, your perfectly fine”! But now you’re hearing this from me, a disabled person. It will be in time, but keep in mind nothing will ever be the same. You learn eventually how to adapt. Getting back to not wanting to be around people, should as counselors, etc. Get involved in this as soon as you feel ready, not when someone tells you. It took me over a year of feeling sorry for myself and feeling very depressed. Some things you can do below:

Go for counseling and get some of these feelings you are having out.

Get involved with group meetings in your local area with individuals who are going through a similar situation as yourself. If you have computer access, you can find several group meets in your area or you can contact your local county office for locations.

As I said before, do this when you feel you are ready. When I first attend counseling I went too early and I mentally rejected it. Now it’s been several years and I no longer attend these meetings, but rather want to focus on helping others. A severe injury is a very emotional thing and as well as physically, it takes a while mentally to heal. At first I felt embarrassed about my injury thinking that no one would want to go out with me because I am an amputee, but that was in my mind. There’s one thing an injury such as this can’t take away from you and that’s what’s in your heart! To make a long story short I have met someone who loves me very much for who I am and I am working on getting married by the end of the year! It’s all about positive thing, which is a very powerful thing. If you met me, you would be surprised on how I am now so casual about my injury and even sometimes joke about it. The other day I went shopping with my girlfriend and I told her that I needed to buy some socks. I went and picked up a few pair and she asked me if that was enough. I said Amy, part of the perks about being an amputee is that one pair of socks makes two pair for me! We both started laughing and she said, “I never thought about that”. With me you never know what’s going to come out of my mouth. But you see how I am now mentally able to deal with my injury and more on. I promise you will too in time.

Another thing a physically challenged person usually has is too much time on their hands! You need to do something to keep yourself busy,such as a hobby or whatever else you would like to do. You have to pick something that you like doing and maybe something that you weren’t able to do because you were too busy working. My hobby is radio controlled helicopters. customized socks with logo