Friday, 2 October 2015

Fast Friends

This is me with my new friend Dave in front of the nurses station in 4A East.

Now watch this:Murder Ball.

So now you know what Murder Ball is and who my new friend is: Dave Willsie - Team Canada Wheelchair Rugby - 2015 ParaPan Am Games Gold medalist. And that is the gold medal in my hand! 

Dave came to see me this week on Tuesday; Joanne (charge nurse) came into my room in the morning and said that I had a visitor. Dave rolls in and says "so, you are the famous Julie". Apparently people have been talking about me? I had seen Dave's pictures in the hallway here as the "Parkwood Boys" with their medals, but didn't recognize him. Dave is a quadriplegic, and has been for 20 years. He has travelled the world with his rugby team winning both Olympic and ParaPan Am Games medals. 

Dave is my new fast friend. We just clicked - started talking about everything. There is some kind of invisible barrier that just melts away and everything is on the table for discussion. He was "checking out" my chair (his words, not mine) and I now know a lot about what I should be looking for. He told me about how he learned to live as a quad from all the guys on his rugby team - while travelling! The functions (or lack thereof) in a paralyzed body are unique and complicated and newbies like me like to gather as much information as possible. Dave lives in his own house and runs a business with his brothers, all while traveling the his team. Next week they are on their way to England. He is such and inspiration to me - gave me a huge boost of confidence. Thanks Dave.

While he was here he hopped out of his chair to show me his seat cushion. Right from his wheelchair into the visitor chair - no slider board - and it happened so fast I almost didn't realize he was doing it. Later, I was thinking about how easy he made it look, and then I thought well of course, he has been in a wheelchair for 20 years. I need to cut myself some slack - I am only two months in, but my slider board transfers are getting pretty slick...

Next Friday my Rec Therapist and I are going to go and check out the Para Swimming at the pool here in London. Very exciting!

I know, I know, pace yourself, Julie. 


  1. I can't help but smile when I read your blog postings. You go girl!
    Anja Vandervlies

  2. You're just making me cry here. Handsome guy!