My husband and I achieved one of our biggest and most difficult goals last month, all thanks to Teachers Pay Teachers (TpT).
You see we have been moving towards this day for just over two years. Andy and I applied for a grant to have our van converted to transport Andy’s power wheelchair. The grant saw us afford 60% of the conversions, yippee. The funny thing was we had to have a van in the first place to be eligible for the grant. This is where TpT saved the day and made our dreams come true.
I had been saving like a crazy woman for over 18 months to put funds towards our second-hand van which we purchased back in December. With the help of TpT and my wonderful customers, we did it! Then when our grant was approved, I was able to come up with the remaining 40% of money needed to convert the van. Converting a van doesn’t come cheaply. It’s a five figure sum! I set myself a goal and have achieved it.
For the nine weeks, our car was magically converted to a fully functioning disabled van. We have had no car for this period of time but this is of no consequence to us, we were very happy to wait. You see, for the past three years my husband hasn’t been able to get in any car and subsequently has been ‘stuck’ at home and in our local community.
Don’t get me wrong, we live in a beautiful place near the beach but when your daily events are limited over a long period of time, you kind of go crazy. Andy is such a positive person but as you can imagine, he became very frustrated. Not any more though. From today, we are free to visit family, go out to dinner, go to the movies, see friends, go to see the football and the list goes on. Basically, we both have a new sense of freedom.
Andy had a water ski racing accident back in May of 2000. He had been racing behind boats since he was ten in long distance races (this one was about 70 miles long) and on this day, he was invited to a special one-up (one skier behind the boat) event. Andy was two-thirds through the race and coming second when he fell. The boat was going more than 100 miles per hour (160km p/h) when he fell and somersaulted several times and fell still in the water. Andy didn’t know it then but he had dislocated his head from his neck (hang-man’s noose injury), cracked his skull, ripped all tendons and muscles from his right arm away from the spine and dislocated five vertebrae. His body stopped working for twenty minutes whilst the boat driver, observer and a paramedic holidaying on the river just where he fell resuscitated him. His lungs were full of water and his brain swelled.
You see, Andy was so very lucky that day, not only was there a paramedic nearby but a Careflight helicopter would get to him within half-an-hour of his fall. Unfortunately, one of Andy’s friends fell further back in the race and broke her pelvis. The helicopter was literally about to land when they got the call to despatch immediately to Andy down river. They were able to get his pulse back and put him on a machine to breathe. Andy was in an induced coma for two weeks but on the first night, we were told to say goodbye. The priest gave him his last rights and we all sat numb to the possibility of losing him. Andy survived that night and a further six months in hospital learning how to walk, talk eat and breathe again. The priest that gave Andy his last rights married us five years later. Andy left hospital walking slowly with a stick and moved on to lead a very normal life.
The past two years have been difficult for Andy. He has had several major operations in the past 13 years with three major stints in hospital. However this last one (May-June 2011) has been very challenging.
Andy’s spine is deteriorating further down and now his legs are ceasing to move. The muscles in Andy’s left hand and forearm are wasting and leave him with about 15% function of his once ‘good’ hand. He has been in his power wheelchair for almost two years now and each and every day is an achievement.
We all take the little things like putting jeans on, brushing our teeth, holding a cup or writing for granted. Many of these things Andy is challenged by and some he cannot do. Both Andy I see that we are actually fortunate in so many ways and we love life. We have this perspective because of the road we have been down. We are grateful for all the blessings that appear each and every day.
I am eternally grateful for TpT and the teachers who purchase my creations. We achieved our dream. I make my resources in hopes of helping others save time and energy. I understand what it means to be a busy teacher. However, the monetary reward has been a huge bonus for us and I am extremely thankful for all the good things that have come our way.
We dared to dream and our dreams have come true.
How has TpT helped you as a buyer or seller? TpT changes the life of children, teachers and parents from all around the world. I would love to read about how it has helped you.
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