What is in the human spirit that can defy the odds?
Josh Wood was pronounced never to walk again. His spine was smashed. He describes it as I could hear an explosion of the bone as I landed.
Yet at the age of thirty, twelve years later.
Josh Wood walks and inspires others to overcome their problems through positive thinking.
The story as reported on today tonight a current affairs program.
“Snowboarding is not for the faint hearted, but for Josh Wood pushing the limits made him feel alive.
At eighteen, he was competing internationally, and feeling indestructible.
Or so he thought.
“I got too greedy. I wanted to do a triple position,” Wood said.
“I knew as soon as I left the jump, I’d made a huge mistake, I knew it was all going wrong,” Wood recalled. “A mistake, a split-second mistake, changed my whole life. I heard the explosion of the bone snapping. I was twisted up like a pretzel.”
The split-second mistake cost him dearly. “I basically landed on (the C7 bone), and my whole body completely turned inside. The back of my pelvis and knees hit the road as well. And then when I bounced off the road, I came back up, and then my body twisted the opposite way, and then the back of my head hit between my back,” Wood explained.
After the accident, the medical world seemed to be a bottomless pit.
“The nurse said ‘you’ll never walk again’. And I said ‘what?’”
And after that things got worse.
“The doctor came in and he goes ‘you’ve done your ultimate goal – you’ll never walk.”
“So then I said to mum ‘I need you to help kill me’.”
His mum, Kaye Ledson, couldn’t have imagined how bad things really were. “I just thought he wasn’t that badly injured. What I didn’t realise is that they thought he was going to die,” Ledson said.
The doctor told her “his spinal cord is crushed. He’ll probably never get out of bed again.”
“I was terrified and I said ‘Josh, I don’t know what we’re going to do, but I can promise you you’ll walk’,” Ledson said.
He had zero hope, but his had his mum. She shouldered the load, and together they decided to dream for the impossible – just one step.
Four months later Wood walked out of hospital. He turned his back on the pain killers and the medication. The only drug he had was pure grit, and he took it by the bucket load.
He also had plenty of help in the form of alternative medicine.
Chiropractor Simon Floreani did his bit, but remains dumbfounded at the result.
“He’s an absolute miracle. It does not make sense that someone with that degree of damage should be walking. Clinically it doesn’t add up,” Floreani said.
“I’ve learned another level of respect that you never stop seeing in clinical practise – the power of the body to heal.”
After raising $22,000 to fund an unconventional six weeks physiotherapy program, Wood sailed his dream across the Pacific to the United States – to Project Walk in California.
When he left he was on the cusp of running, and in the wings emerged a mentor – Crusty Demon daredevil Robbie Maddison.
“Josh is an example of what can go wrong, but also a great example of a fighter and someone who is coming back,” Maddison said.
He urged Wood to defy gravity and reach for the sky. Within months, the quadriplegic, who was given no hope, was now airborne.
“A lot of people give up at that point and think ‘I drew the short straw. It’s all over’. And to see Josh not giving up is something very powerful.”
And it’s fiancé Amelia Allen who keeps this miracle man grounded when he comes back to earth.
“I can’t worry about Josh because if I worried about everything he did I’d be a nervous wreck,” she joked.
Even Wood’s smallest achievements don’t go unnoticed. “It makes you more grateful for what you’ve got. I mean I can stand up now and not think about it, whereas Josh has to think about it.”
We all have excuses for why we don’t do things, but for Wood there are none. Losing the use of his body gave him more reasons to live – to prove the doctors wrong.
“I cry happy tears. I’m so proud of him,” his mum said. “I actually think this accident was meant to happen. Sadly it’s made him into this amazing person, and he will change people’s lives.”
And with his Kelly Slater good looks, and trademark smile, we can only stay tuned to what Wood does next.
Wood is still trying to raise money to head back to the States and continue his physiotherapy at Project Walk.
This story really highlights the incredible resilience people have to anything that life can dish out.
When we analyse this and of course this is not an isolated case. What is that can defy the odds such as this?
Josh Wood clearly never ever doubted that he would walk again. His mum Ledson instilled that belief in him.
His desire to walk would not even consider being confined to a wheel chair.
His self talk was about getting better and leading a normal life.
Another example of this is the story of Blair Hill the son of Dr. Napoleon Hill, he was born a deaf mute.
At the time it was considered a freak of nature . Blair had no ears, so by medical science he had no possible means of ever being able to hear again.
Blair’s life would have remained that way if not for the self talk his father planted into his head.
Right from the time Blair was pronounced never to hear again Napoleon Hill embarked on providing Blair with the self talk required for him to believe he would one day hear.
When Blair responded to a musical instrument, Dr Napoleon Hill knew that one day Blair would hear again.
In fact Blair became the champion of hearing impaired people. He used and promoted a hearing device which gave him the gift of sound. It also proved to be the gift of sound for many other hearing impaired people.
Blair was hired by the manufactures of the device to promote it to the world.
So what is the x factor that allows people to overcome these insurmountable hurdles where so many others have succumbed meekly?
Is it desire?
Is it a positive environment?
Is it a unique individual?
Is it removal of fear and self doubt?
Is it will power?
Is it a support system?
Is it faith?
Is it devine intervention?
Of course the answer is all of the above! With positive self talk and belief heading the list An unerring belief in achieving
the goal that people set is the magic ingredient. the beauty of it is that we all have these qualities at our disposal.
Excuses, what excuses?
Please share what you think provides people with the ability to know what is in the human spirit that can defy the odds?