31 Dec

Today I met many new people. Those who have been a wheelchair for many years and those who have been in a chair for a mere few weeks. I, without question, have gained perspective on my condition. Early this morning, I met a young girl who fell off a building and punctured her spinal cord… and is able to move her legs. Doctors told here she probably will not ever walk again. During dinner, I sat next a gentleman who has been in a wheelchair for 25 years. I will always remember what he said — “I have lived a good life, and I done everything I have ever wanted to do in life.” I realized today that I need to believe every day that I will make a full recovery, but if not, life will still be full of success and happiness and I can never forget that either.

Also, today I got another beanie. The MacDonald’s were kind enough to give me a nice Avalanche cap. It came at the right time, because I was getting a bit chilled. Beanies are good because I learned last night my body will get cold or heat up and it takes extra time to adjust. This is true because I have the tendency to get sweaty in the middle night, and after my first “shower,” I got chilled pretty quick and it took some time to warm up.

I also want to let everyone know that I have received a lot of phone calls from people, and I know I have been not so good on returning the calls. I promise I will begin to return your phones call starting next week. Before it was quite a bit of effort to speak on the phone. I am gaining strength every day, so I will be able to call everyone out there supporting me.

I also wanted to thank the Laughery’s a for the awesome Rocky Mountain Chocolate basket. Erika, Mom and I have been enjoying it every day. Needless to say it is a guitly pleasure. But I would argue well deserved.

Lastly, I know that I have been holding off on guests since my arrival at Craig. I appreciate your patience. Now that I have had the chance to get adjusted to my new surroundings, I can’t wait to see all those that are supporting me. I have a schedule of next week’s activities and rehab. Tomorrow I will get the schedule up so anyone wanting to visit can know when I am in rehab and when I am not.

Thanks for reading. As always I thank you for all you support and thoughts. Trust me, it means a lot.

No pictures tonight, but tomorrow I’ll get you some new ones.

— Joel


Posted by on December 31, 2006 in Previous Posts


13 responses to “Perspective

  1. Janice

    December 31, 2006 at 2:44 am

    Hi Joel and Erika,

    I check the blog daily and look forward to your progress and your upbeat positive attitude about life. You are an inspiration to us all. This site is awsome!

    On the homefront, all is good in Tempe. Boo got bored and left for a vacation. I helped him set up an e-mail address and he promised he would write to us on his travels. Crazy cat, always looking for adventure. At least since he has been gone we have not had to clean up feathers and parts of animals around the house. Now all we have to do is bring in the mail and change the lights so it looks like someone is home. I hope he has a good time while he is gone.

    We all miss you guys, and lately I have actually been missing Boo. Hope he decides to comes back.


  2. Bernadette and Gil

    December 31, 2006 at 3:12 am

    Joel, We are still in AZ and flying out to the snow tomorrow. We have been reading your blog daily and let me tell you, it’s so inspirational to read your posts!! You’re the best! Looking forward to coming to visit when we can. Keep up the good spirits and focus on recovery.

    You truly are a blessing to all who know you.

    Happy New Year to you and Erika. See you soon.

    Bernadette and GIl

  3. Matthew Powell

    December 31, 2006 at 3:21 am

    Its fantastic to see the pictures up on the deal. Looking better every day my friend!! Counting down the minutes till the full buzz pictures get posted. I hope all the snow is a welcomed suprise after burning up in the AZ heat for so long, welcome home!! It is really great that you can get good support from those at the facility, you will no doubt be an inspiration to them as well. I wish you and your family the best in the new year and a speedy recovery also. Looking forward to being able to see ya this month, hopefully within a few weeks Amy and I will meet up in D town and stop by.

    Matthew and Amy

  4. Debbie Royds

    December 31, 2006 at 4:38 am

    Go Broncos. You better be wearing that Bronco hat tomorrow so the Broncos can whoop up on the 49ers!
    God bless – work hard and stay positive.
    Deb & Larry Royds

  5. Jean Lammers

    December 31, 2006 at 4:59 am

    You are all lookin’ soooo good! –all of you, Rory, Erika, and Joel !! Joel, you still have an Arizona tan –you look great ! Your smiles warm us ! We Lammers are staying tuned in to this blog site and oh! the pictures are so uplifting –to see you progress so much each day. It probably doesn’t seem that way to you — it must be so very hard –but it’s impressive progress! We’ll keep on praying for a steady (quick!) and complete recovery ! —thinking about you ! Thanks for the nifty blog site !!
    Jerry and Jean

  6. Sharon Bodle

    December 31, 2006 at 10:24 pm


    I try to check the blog most days. I see you are making progress and that is wonderful. Your accouting today of people you have met is inspiring with the outlook they have had on their lives. We have had mild temperatures here in Ohio with rain today. The week ahead is going to be mid-40s to 50s. The visitors from California and Florida at chapel today were grousing they didn’t have snow. We’ve enjoyed the snowy pictures you have included, especially since we don’t have shovel or drive in it! Remember I’m thinking of you and praying often! I’ve asked the “Music Moms” to also keep you in their thoughts and prayers so you’ve got about fourteen of us “Moms” lifting you up. Beth can tell you about the “Moms” sometime. Will check on you again soon.


  7. Diane Kingsley

    December 31, 2006 at 11:09 pm

    Hey, Joel & Erika. Happy New Year! I like the hair cut. Your mom does good work. With respect to the varying body temps, welcome to the world of most menopausal women!!! I wish Beanies could cure hot flashes.

    You were talking about meeting inspirational people. I saw a segment a couple of days ago on Jim McClaren (not sure of spelling). You should google him. What an amazing guy. He was a athlete that lost his leg in an auto accident and he came back to compete in triathalons with faster times than many with 2 legs. Then in a race he was hit by a car and became paralyzed from the neck down, but today he came move his arms and I think he can stand. He does a lot of speaking engagements to give encouragement to others. He never lost hope and he worked really hard in his rehabilitation. I thought of you and know you can succeed as well.

    I love looking at snow as it is so beautiful, but don’t like to shovel it or drive in it…so you are blessed in this area to be able to look at a true Winter Wonderland and enjoy it without experiencing the downside.

    Pete and I will toast you both tonight as we ring in the new year. I know 2007 will be a lot a hard work, but I feel in my heart that you will reap the rewards of your “labor”. How can you fail with so much love and support from friends and family.
    You both continue to be in my thoughts and prayers.

    Good luck to the Broncos. Hope they win today and make the playoffs!

  8. eric

    January 1, 2007 at 1:09 am

    Happy New Years Joel & Erika. We love you and can’t wait to see you soon.

    Love ya,
    Eric, Amy, Brendan & Olivia

  9. Janis

    January 1, 2007 at 5:20 pm

    Happy New Year. You never know who you will meet that will inspire you. Since I always say, “Everything I learned, I learned form the movies.” I will give you one of my favorite quotes from the movie, Castaway. “And I know what I have to do now. I gotta keep breathing. Because tomorrow the sun will rise. Who knows what the tide could bring?”. Speaking of movies, here’s a net address I think you might find fun if you haven’t seen it before. It’s a painting that hides the clues to 50 scary movies.
    I got about 35 on my own, another 10 by looking a scary movies titles on the net and the last 5 by finding a chat room that gave the answers. Enjoy. Talk to you soon. Much love. Janis

  10. karyl thurston

    January 1, 2007 at 5:32 pm

    I can’t quite say “Happy New Year” yet.Thank goodness 2006 is behind us, it’s been a rough one… Any resolutions we might have seem so trite compared to what you will be faced with. All we can do is forge ahead with perserverance, spirit and determination, and Joel, you already have all of the above. Much love and admiration, Karyl

  11. Russell (ASU)

    January 1, 2007 at 5:44 pm

    Joel and Erika,

    Happy New Year!!
    (and sorry about the Broncos)


  12. paula mosher

    January 3, 2007 at 12:25 am

    Joel & Erika,

    I’m friends with Bryan & Jess, I live in Vancouver quite close to them. I met you both at their wedding so I’m sure you won’t remember me, but I’ve been reading your blog regarding your progress & have to comment! You are amazing people your strength & courage is incredible…you are an inspiration to us all. Keep up your postive attitude & best of luck with your recovery!

    Paula Mosher


    January 5, 2007 at 1:38 pm



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