Sarah’s Summit: Proud to Be Disabled

Sarah Foley was paralyzed instantly.

She was thrown from her ATV, tumbled off the trail and was crushed as she hit a ditch. The accident left her without the use of her legs. Ever since the accident, she has struggled to accept her disability.

She’d often look in the mirror and feel disgusted. But the No Barriers Summit happened at the right time for her, she said.

The Summit changed her outlook on life, her relationship with her husband, her performance at work, and her perspective on herself.

How?

“I felt proud of my community and really proud to be disabled,” she told No Barriers in the video below:

After the Summit, Sarah said she felt “activated.”

“No matter how big or small that action is, I just need to establish that momentum,” she wrote in a personal blog. “Another point was to let go, and I feel like I have let go of quite a bit this weekend. I feel a sense of freedom and lightness after just diving into this event head first with a smile and open heart.”

“ … For the first time in a very long time, I am actually looking forward to the future, rather than being overwhelmed by it. One of the biggest natural needs of a human being is to feel needed and a sense of worth. I have felt like more of a burden for a while and invited myself to be a victim of my circumstance.

I was told this weekend of a little insight to the strength of people with disabilities, which gave me a whole new, and much needed, perspective. The majority of the general population hold themselves back from really growing because they tip-toe to the edge of their comfort zone – which is where we grow the most.

People with disabilities are drastically catapulted out of their comfort zone and given two options; sink or swim … and if you choose to swim, you have to relearn how to do so without your full physical ability.

Now I see, when people say, “I could never do what you do”, they aren’t pointing out my weakness, and they are pointing out my strength. I always think; well you would be just as strong if something similar happened to you, which is true! Everyone has the strength inside them, but it is a choice whether you want to use it or not.”