A personal story by Deborah Davis
I travel because I want my mind and my heart and my soul to overcome the boundaries that my body now feels. I travel in spite of the fact that it is “inconvenient” in that I am unable to walk onto the plane or to simply stand up and use the bathroom when needed, or that I have to spend innumerable hours planning and seeking out where I may be able to go in a wheelchair, what I will be able to see and where will accommodate me once I reach my chosen destination. I travel because to do so puts me in the realm of saying “HA! Look at me now!” I can do and be and see and experience this wonderful world. I CAN taste, smell, delight in the people and remarkable sights and win in the battle of my body over my spirit.
I was a dancer and I was 18 when I crashed my car in front of the Mormon Chapel on the Maryland beltway. I broke my neck and was told I will never move from the neck down again. Yet, I heard a voice as I lay alone in the night:
“You will not be able to move your legs..but it will not be permanent and there is a purpose.”
I accepted this, moved on and regained the use of my arms and hands…just like the voice said.
So I go–and I relish in the next trip–the next challenge that I WILL over come. I am not a wheelchair sports jock – never raced in my chair or played tennis or rugby or wheelchair basketball. Travel and love is how I survive. I take my love and my will with me and I look strangers in strange lands in the eye as I roll by and I am saying to myself and to everyone who sees me that WE are not pathetic, sad, miserable cripples…
WE are here and we want to share the world with you….it is up to me to show you I will come–it is up to you to show me I am welcome.
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