I don’t remember how it all happened. I actually don’t remember much about those first few weeks, but slowly I began to piece things together. I couldn’t feel anything from my chest down, I couldn’t move – other than shrug my shoulders, and my whole family had dropped everything to be by my side…this must be pretty bad.
I came to learn that the car accident I was in on Halloween night paralyzed me and I "would never walk again”. I heard a lot of that over the next weeks and months – these are your limitations and you’ll never be the old you. I came to terms with it pretty well but refused to believe I couldn’t get better. Nothing had held me back before and I wasn’t about to let this change me. Luckily my sister began researching our options like crazy and we found a place that seemed to have my same attitude toward recovery.
Project Walk in California was doing what I never thought possible with people just like me – people with spinal cord injuries. They were getting them out of their wheelchair, on the floor, moving their legs, teaching them to stand, trying to help people walk again. This is exactly what I needed to keep me motivated and getting better.
I moved out to California for a year and a half and trained 3 hours a day, 4 times a week. I never expected to feel such a renewed confidence and make the life-long friendships that I did. I went from being dependent on family members to help me do everything to regaining my independence, living completely alone and driving myself to my workouts.
I hadn’t reached my full recovery potential, but knew I needed to get back to Dallas and start rebuilding my life, get back with family and friends – and bring this amazing opportunity to so many people hungry for the chance. So I did and that’s how we became REACT.
We are now part of national group of stand alone Activity Based Therapy (ABT) Centers working together to foster capacity over competition.
Video: Kendell's Road to Recovery