So before I officially get started, just a little side note…
Some awesome friends filmed and edited a video of me and my parents that tells my story. It’s out and published and you can see it by clicking on the “Benefit” tab at the top of the page. There’s a big ole “click HERE” link that’ll direct you to the online fundraising page with the video right there to watch. So check it out:) There are some other updates on that tab too…like an awesome sheep made outta Costco toilet paper. Yea, I’m serious and yea, there’s a picture….
Have you ever noticed how things almost always come as units? I mean, it’s rarely if ever just a burger. Instead, it’s a whole combo meal. When you buy a car, it’s not just the car. It’s the car, the insurance policy, the oil changes, the gas, and on and on. Spinal cord injuries are kinda like that car. It looks like one thing on the outside, and not until you’re in the midst of it all do you really realize what it all entails. Not until you’re back at the mechanic for the umpteenth time because your transmission dropped, your spark plugs went hay wire, or goodness know what else happened does it finally click.
Yea, spinal cord injuries are like that.
I learned early on that the whole “not walking” part of a spinal cord injury was and is the easy part of all of this. No really, the “using a wheelchair to get around” was and is the least of my worries. It’s all that other crap that comes with this that challenges everything I am and stand for. It’s the rest of the package deal that makes this as difficult as it is somedays.
And you know, hardly anyone even realizes there IS a rest of the package. I know I never thought about it before. I mean, it’s all so unknown unless you’re actually living it or unless you’ve been told about it.
I mean, for starters, I spend way more time thinking about my skin then I ever used to. I honestly can’t “sit still” and do weight shifts every so often to avoid pressure sores on my butt. If I ever get one of those terrifying little red marks that signifies skin breakdown, I’d be stuck in bed. And a bed-confined Sam is certainly not a happy Sam. And since I can’t feel if anything is going wrong back there, I literally have to check out my booty in a mirror every morning before I get out of bed. Yea. Nothing says good morning like your own butt crack….
And I could go on…
I mean, it’s fine. It’s all just a part of my life now. I do weight shifts without even thinking and I’m a pro at taking my pants off and putting them back on while in my wheelchair (seriously, try it sitting down).
But it’s not always fine…
Sometimes your car breaks down and sometimes you have to deal with the rest of the spinal cord injury baggage. That pretty much summarizes this past week and man can that be a struggle. It’s fighting with issues you never thought you would have to face at age 22. It’s having to act like everything is fine and hunky dory when you can’t remember the last time you’ve cried so much and it’s only noon. I’m sure it’ll get better eventually, but waiting for eventually can really suck.
But you know, things really do happen for a reason and God helps us through those struggles that knock us down and out. I spoke to ~250 5th graders today about my injury and how life changes. I rolled into the school wondering how I was going to exude positivity and saw the greatest “Welcome Sam” banner and all these hearts posted on the walls….
I mean how awesome is that? Like seriously.
A few of the students even gave me some things they made, an awesome bracelet, tissue paper flowers, and a poster that made my day. Just thinking about it, I know I can get through anything life throws at me this week…
Yep, fear the trees… kids rock:D