My Injurversary 14-14
It's soon to be fourteen years since I sustained my spinal injury, or to use the phrase a fellow quadriplegic come up with, my injurversary. I was aged fourteen at the time so after September the 1st I'll be a quad longer than I was able-bod. I don't know if others would see why this means anything but to me it does. Even to the point of looking forward to and celebrating it, why? Well let's have a quick run through.
I feel when my injury happened I pretty much started a new life. Mine started with no movement below the neck, having a ventilator breath for me and using a letter board to spell what I wanted to say. Within two months I was off the ventilator and breathing for myself. A flicker of movement in my right arm increased so I was able to control an electric wheelchair. Within a year I recovered movement in my shoulders, enough to push a manual wheelchair over flat surfaces. Then... everything settled. As I said that was fourteen years ago, I slowly got the movement I have now and although it's not much I'm extremely grateful for it. So... why celebrate this process of breaking my neck?
Well, it's not every year I celebrate my injurversary, sometimes I forget until a few days after. It's this specific year that I want to acknowledge most. Being age fourteen I wasn't settled in my own personality yet. Now that it's been another fourteen years and I'm obviously twenty-eight, I feel confident with who I am and the life I live. Not only that, I've come to learn the positives of having a disability, something I covered in a previous article. I suppose the best way to say it is, I don't want to forget what I've been through, I want to celebrate the journey I've had since becoming a quad.
Let's put aside my injury for a sec, that was only the starting point of this journey, being a quad is the continuation. I've never been one for “haven't you done well considering how disabled you are.” For a long time I didn't know how to respond to this question. I suppose yes is the short answer but it's never been a choice for me and that felt like I was accepting sympathy. Nothing wrong with sympathy, I simply don't think I deserve it. I went through a hard time in my life, I adjusted and became stronger for it. This injurversary is a new chapter and I'm looking forward to the journey ahead.
We'd really love to hear if you celebrate your injurversary? If so why? Or do you sometimes forget it? How did you feel when you became disabled longer than you were able bod? Let us know on our social media Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.