We’ll always go through life hitting bumps along the way. Just remember when you do, pick yourself up, dust off, and keep going…
My whole life I wanted to be an entertainer. To narrow that down, I wanted to dance on Broadway. When I was 25, I was ready to make my dream a reality, so I moved to New York. On August 31, 2008, after my best audition I came home and realized I was locked out of my apartment. Looking for a way in, I went to the roof to go down the fire escape and go into our open window.
Once on the roof looking down, I changed my mind and turned around. That’s the last thing I remember. My next memory was waking up in the hospital hooked to what seemed like hundreds of machines. I then learned I fell from the roof. My immediate thought:
“Seriously!?…I knew it was a bad idea. I mean I walked away from the bad idea. Oh well…Well these machines are annoying and I want to get out of here, so come on self, let’s hop to it.”
I was now a dancer in a bed who couldn’t move…at all. It was then I knew I had to really work if I wanted to make any progress and get out of there. Trust me when I say it wasn’t easy. I was in the hospital for eight months, intense physical therapy for three years, and I’m still doing what I can to stay physically active.
As for my career, well, let’s just say my dancing is on hold for the moment. So, I am on a new path. Since my accident I decided to enter into the motivational speaking world and really love it. My degree is in theater and dance, so standing and speaking front of a crowd isn’t that hard. Only, when I’m speaking in front of groups, I’m not playing a character or reciting lines from a play, I’m playing myself, talking about myself. A little weird, but hey, I’m a pro.
You know, I always wanted to be famous. I didn’t really picture it this way, but what are you going to do?
Yes, my situation is pretty rough, yes many of my dreams were compromised, yes I could have boo-hooed my life away but what would be the point in that? I would just be miserable and I prefer not to live life, my life, that way.
The point is, bad things happen to all of us. Things we have no control over. When they do, you have different choices in front of you. Do I move on? Do I stay upset and hate the world?
My choice? To be happy. I mean if your heart is still beating then obviously you’re here for some reason, so make the most of it!!
Which is exactly what I’ve been doing. In the past seven years, I’ve spoken in places like Hawaii, Canada, New York, Wisconsin, and more. I’ve gotten to be an extra in movies and television shows; I was featured on CBS morning, NPR, and Fitness Magazine.
I continue to move forward in my own physical therapy. I’m doing yoga, I use the MusicGlove and more.
I do these things and push myself because I know how to work hard and what the outcome can be. Plus there is no timeline on my recovery, things will wake up and decide to move when they want. In the meantime I’m just going to keep striving for progress. Even on the bad days, because they exist.
I’ve been so fortunate to have my entire journey documented through photographs that I’ve put together in a book I am self-publishing entitled, “Falling Isn’t Failure.” It gives a little more insight into my story.
I also have a website you can check out.
Look, life happens and it’s not perfect, but that’s okay. If you are in a situation you’re not happy in, I’m here to tell you it is totally possible to get your happy back.