Thursday April 25, 2013 my life changed dramatically. It began as a typical day of school and my trip to the gymnastics gym. What I did not expect were the events that followed while at the gym. There, I was tumbling in the foam pit, preparing for cheerleading try-outs that were the up-coming week at my high school. At the time of the accident I was demonstrating a basic skill for a younger student; I over rotated and landed on the top of my head. Immediately, my body went into a fetal position and I was unable to move. After a week in ICU, many months in Riley Children's Hospital rehab unit, and one surgery later, I was released to start my new life.
My new life; it is really hard to describe to a fifteen year old what life is going to be like in a wheelchair, with no use of your arms and legs. Not only was I in a wheelchair and my life changed all around me, I was now going to start high school in a new building, with a lot more people, new teachers and a new outlook on life. Returning to school and returning to the gym are the two things I am most proud of doing. Since my accident, I have be come more focused in school, my grades have improved immensely and I have a goal of becoming a child life therapist. Returning to the gym was important too. I wanted to show others that you can overcome set-backs and still do what you love to do…you may just have to change the way you do some things. Now, instead of being the one to tumble and cheer, I get to coach.
One of the next important steps in my recovery and a stepping stone to the next chapter of my life is to learn to drive and purchase a car that can be adapted for me. Unfortunately, insurance doesn't cover the extensive modifications required for me to be able to independently drive. I start driving lessons over fall break, October 12. However, due the extensive medical expenses I have had over the past few years, I don't have the funds to purchase a vehicle and pay for the modifications I need.
What does my future hold? Looking back, my situation has led me in the direction of becoming a Child Life Therapist. My CLT’s during my stay and visits back to Riley Hospital have had a huge impact on my life. They were, and still remain, encouraging, up lifting and ultimately, helped heal my spirit. I hope to one day pay it forward and assist others who find themselves in a similar situation as I found myself in April of 2013. To accomplish this, I plan to attend IUPUI for a year or two; then transfer to Ball State University to enter into their CLT program. Just another reason I have to be able to drive!!!
Please consider helping me reach my goals of having my own vehicle to drive. I am so appreciative of the love and support I have received this far and will be forever grateful to any assistance you can provide. As I was thinking about this whole situation, I found a quote from Alan W Watts, "The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it and join the dance.” I agree with him, except, I plan to cheer instead of dance. Thank you again for your support.