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Posts Tagged ‘persistence’

Webster’s Dictionary (yes, the actual book; I still use one of those!) defines the word “persist” as “to continue firmly and steadfastly despite obstacles.”

In my experience with everything related to spinal cord injuries for almost 8 years now, it seems like persistence is needed in almost every area of everyday life. Whether it’s related to health care, necessary equipment or activities, it seems to take persistence for anything to happen at all. And for things to happen smoothly – well, that takes extra doses of persistence, for sure!

I myself have needed to advocate for proper medical care for Darren, helped him with his benefits (waivers, Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, etc), contacted vendors for equipment and assisted him in obtaining his driver’s license. Now, he is doing more of these things on his own, but in the beginning, I did a lot for him. From my point of view, the most difficult areas seemed to be the most important. Why is it SO hard to get a wheelchair? The process is very frustrating, maddening at times, and SOOOO slow. This is what people rely on, every single day. And yet it takes months and months, if not a full year or more, to go through the entire process. Who is in control? Who cares? Persistence pays off (sometimes); but I find myself balancing on a thin tight-rope between being persistent and downright mean to the person who seems to be holding up the process. UGH!

Another area where persistence seems to be key is with driving. The difficulty in scheduling adaptive driving lessons, figuring out the proper equipment that is needed, finding/ordering/buying a suitable vehicle, and then having everything come together so you can actually take the driving test and get your license –  I feel exhausted when our Push to Walk clients just tell me what they go through. If they weren’t persistent, the process would take even longer or they would give up.

But that is the good part of the story – our clients DON’T give up! They persist, they persevere and they accomplish things! They get their new wheelchairs, they start driving, they travel, they do fun things. None of it is easy; none of it is fun. But they all do what is needed so they can reach their goals. They overcome obstacles day in and day out, and accomplish things many people told them they wouldn’t. Our Push to Walk clients personify the word persistence in their daily lifes and I am so proud of them!

If you have a good story of how persistence helped you accomplish something in your life – big or small – let me know!

P.S. For all you locals who live near Push to Walk – come to Chili’s on Route 23 in Riverdale on Thursday, April 19. Chili’s will donate 10% of all sales all day tomorrow to Push to Walk – eat in OR take out! Please be sure to have a coupon with you (we have them at Push to Walk or I can e-mail you one, just let me know) or ask your server. Thanks! Your support is appreciated!

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