Thanks to My Friends

There are a lot of good people in this world. I think there is more good than evil. Even though on the news all we are shown is the evil in this world. Throughout my life I’ve tried to surround myself with good people and because of that those people are still around to help me through my struggles. I can’t imagine life without my family and my friends. I can’t thank you all enough for what you have done for me. The personal messages that I’ve received have helped me to believe in myself and to believe that there still is a great future to look forward to.

I try not to dwell too much on the past anymore. By doing that it only drove me crazy so I’ve moved on. Sure there are things every day that I wish I could do and there are many things that bring me down but by focusing on what I can do and trying to make a difference is the only way I can move on.

On Friday I went out on a boat for only the 2nd time in 2 years and unlike the 1st time around I actually enjoyed myself. I’m thankful that I have friends who are willing to go out of their way to carry me into and out of the boat. Like I said before, people have gone out of their way to accommodate me which has made life so much better.

It was strange being back on the water because there are so many memories that I have on the Scioto River. I used to be out on the water almost everyday. It was where I could get away and just be at peace with myself. It’s strange being back on the boat where I am only a spectator. I wanted so badly just to be able to stand up and get up behind that boat but all I could do was sit and watch. It was kind of rough seeing my friends in their element doing what they love. It reminded me just how much I love the sport. But unlike last year I think I finally accepted that I most likely will never ski again but that does not mean that I should avoid the sport altogether.

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One of the perks of having a disability is the special treatment that you receive. Last night I went with my friend Ben to a Columbus Crew game. Because I was in a wheelchair we were able to get our tickets upgraded and we sat in the front row for the game. I was hesitant that I would like watching soccer but the game was absolutely incredible. If ever you want to go to a concert or a sporting event give me a call because you’ll get the best seats in the house.

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Last night after the game I spoke with my twin brother’s girlfriend who was at the Clarion River where I used to ski and camp every weekend. There are still some things that can bring me down no matter how good of a mood I am in. When she told me that my nephews were there and that my 3-year-old nephew was now riding in a tube it just killed me. I would’ve loved to be there to see him on a tube for the 1st time. I wish I was the one driving him. I also wish that I was there so that I could teach my 8-year-old nephew how to water ski. There are a lot of things that I miss out on now that are sometimes too hard to handle.

I’ve heard that a spinal cord injury may be the most traumatic life-changing injury that someone may experience. I can definitely believe that because I’m living it but at the same time I realize that things could have been much worse. Both of my hands could be paralyzed. I could’ve suffered a brain injury with how many times I flipped my car. I’ll have to find a picture of when I woke up in the ICU because my entire body was blown up like a balloon including my head. I was a total mess and it’s amazing to see how far I’ve come since that 1st day in the ICU. Even though I can’t walk I’m 1,000 times better than I was and that’s what I need to remember. I went from not being able to breathe on my own or even sit up to where I am now. I survived and that’s all that matters.

I write to put things into perspective and to help me remind myself that I’m still alive for a reason. I like to get things off of my chest because if you let them build up inside of you you’ll drive yourself towards insanity. Since my injury I learned that being honest with my family and friends is incredibly important because if you are not honest then no one can help you. I used to keep things to myself but now I’m always reaching out for help and I have much more control over my life. I don’t care if people judge me and I don’t care if people know everything I’ve done wrong. Because too many people out there keep their problems to themselves and they never find help. So I’m just going to throw it all out there. I encourage you to reach out for help when you need it. Like I said before, there is much more good in this world than evil. Surround yourself with good people because at some point you’re going to need them. It’s how I got through everything I’ve been through and it’s how I continue to keep a smile on my face.

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One thought on “Thanks to My Friends

  1. love the pictures! its wonderful to see that you can appreciate your life now, but remember its ok to have bad days or moments or to cry every now and then. and i second that getting things off your mind really helps…if i dont get a thought off my chest, whether on paper, to a friend, or even in the shower to myself i build up some grandious thought that literally is alll i can think about or focus on. sometimes u just gotta let the thoughts roll and roll along with them =) the brain and imagination are incredible things…thank God you have such a wonderfully brilliant brain and kind heart to share all of your stories and lessons about life!

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