One year after my accident, while on a reservoir, I had a chance to check my progress – to see if I was training my brain to respond (not react) appropriately in different situations. My family, a few friends, and myself were enjoying a day of water skiing. It was my turn, and I was excited to try something new, so I put on my life jacket and flopped myself overboard. I then dog paddled over to a flat, round, wooden board and climbed on. Lying on my belly, I gave my dad the sign to “hit it” He did and my arms began getting a workout as I struggled to hang on as my limp legs were trying to pull me off. To be honest, I was a bit scared and was not having a good time as water was pelting my eyes and going up my nose. I still remember thinking, “this is not that much fun, why did I try this?” Then, I had the dreaded thought of “why did my friend shoot me?”
All this time, everyone in the boat was laughing and having a great time. I even thought that maybe one of my sisters had told a joke but then I remembered that my sisters weren’t very funny and didn’t know any jokes. Then my dad headed toward shore and I noticed that everyone was starring at me. I am used to drawing attention but this seemed a bit much. So, I looked over my right shoulder and to my dismay I noticed my skinny, atrophied legs were just flapping around behind me. I was then mortified when I noticed that my green swimming suit was nowhere in sight! The water had pulled it off and I couldn’t feel a thing. Well, now was the moment of truth as far as taking response-ability. First of all, I fell off of the board, proving my brain wasn’t paralyzed. And might I say, “having a bad hair day is not nearly as bad as having a bad butt day”. Now, I had to gather myself and wait for the boat to circle around and come back. I also had the important decision of how would I react. For a moment, I wanted to be blame everyone in the boat, but my thinking was beginning to change. I decided to laugh with everyone and find the positive. To be honest, I didn’t find much good but I do think that I was the world’s first nude disabled water skier.