this your first time meeting a person with a spinal cord injury? When you met this special person with a spinal cord
injury, what was your first reaction? What were some of your questions? What do you think about your friend over
coming obstacles on a daily basis? What can you pass on to others?
sometimes fails me, but I believe Shelly is the first person I met and worked with who had a spinal cord injury. I had worked
in the hospital, so I was accustomed to people being in wheelchairs, but I would leave them after I drew their blood and more
than likely I wouldn’t see them again.
started coming into the gym with Rick Beard to help develop her muscles. After I received my personal training certificate,
Rick let me train with Shelly. I was scared. I didn’t want to hurt her. I didn’t know what her limits were and
I was unsure if there was a possibility for me to hurt her more. I was scared to interact with her because I didn’t
know what Shelly was thinking. Was she jealous that I’m still walking, running, lifting weights, coming and going on
my own? I didn’t want to talk about me because I didn’t want her to be upset. After just a few visits with Shelly
she showed me that being in a wheelchair doesn’t have to hold her back from having a life. I never really asked her
about what happened or how she felt about her situation. I didn’t have to. Her strong personality and cheerfulness made
me at ease and I didn’t care that she was in a wheelchair. I looked forward to meeting with Shelly every week.
know Shelly before her accident, but I can’t imagine she changed too much. If anything, I’d guess she is stronger
than before. I can’t imagine being an active person and being an athlete, to being bound to wheels, but Shelly would
only look at it as a fun ride. She twists all negative aspects to be positive. I admire her and everything she is doing. If
anyone has any questions about life in a wheelchair, I could only point them to Shelly.