DAILY LIVING & MOBILITY

Never ending trouble with Spinal Cord Injury

Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)

IsMael Caparros

Introduction to my spinal cord injury

Hello to everyone who’s reading my story. As you can see on most of the pictures I’m in a wheelchair. I am 26 years old and I suffered a spinal cord injury at D8-D9. Things aren’t always like they look like now and all you can see isn’t always as you can imagine. I had a traffic accident at the age of 21 and it’s still today anguish because five years later, nothing is solved and I’m the one who’s disadvantaged. I’d like to explain and tell you my story, what happened that night and I hope it won't bore you or be too heavy to read. I want you to understand that I need to tell the truth about it and maybe it could have the repercussion to make people aware about what it looks like to live in a wheelchair. I’m writing this with the hope that you can put yourself in my place in order to understand me.

The Day that changed my life

I was working in the hostelry that was my main occupation since I started to work, as a kid. That is the trade I always worked in and I know it’s impossible to go back to today. About 8 PM my little brother came to my work place with his heart shrunk in anguish and pain. He told me that our mother was very sick after drug ingestion. At that point, at only 21 years old, I knew something was wrong because I had never seen my brother in a such heavy mood before. That serious concern and my mother's state of health made me talk to my boss. Obviously, the problem was that I couldn’t leave before my work shift ended. All of my co-workers understood me and each of them said that they would clear tables and clean for me. My father was not that far from my work place, waiting to drive me to the hospital to see my mother. My parents were separated, however he would drive me there.

How I sustained a spinal cord injury

Sometimes I ask myself: “Why me? Why did that happen to me? It’s not fair, I just was worried and trying to help.” So my work shift ended, my father was there, waiting for me. He drove the scooter. That night was a fair in Málaga and because of the distance to the fair attractions, there was not that many cars and the traffic was almost quiet. That wasn’t unusual because people used to party, dance or just enjoy the fait with their family.  My father and I were on the road to the hospital. I remember it as if it was only yesterday. It was the early hours of the D-day: 21 August 2013 and we were on the road to our own destiny. My father was driving very fast, in a kind of uncontrolled way. I learned from the blood analysis they made us later that day that he apparently had been drinking alcohol that night. How could he accept to drive his son in those conditions? The fact is that, we saw traffic lights turning red at a distance of 50 meters. He decided to go on and didn’t slow down but sped up. From our left came a big car with traffic lights on green for him. No way back. None of the two brakes. My father tried to avoid the car doing a sudden manoeuvre to the right. It did not help. We crashed fronto-laterally with the car. The scooter was damaged and carried away by the car. My father broke his hip and arm, but I was injured the most, the one who didn’t drive, the one who just wanted to know about his mother's state of health suffered a complete spinal cord injury at D8-D9. There were a series of chaotic events which left me as a paraplegic for the rest of my life.

5th anniversary of my spinal cord injury

At this point, 5 years later, I’m still waiting for things to be solved. I’m waiting for the trial, no compensation yet. I have to settle for a shitty pension, all the medical problems related to the spinal cord injury and the expensive costs of all things we need, like medicine, wheelchair, specially adapted car, bathroom, etc. I can’t break free from all of this until the judge don’t consider it. I can’t live my dreams too.

Life goes on

One year ago, I tried skydiving and loved it. I want to be the first Spanish guy in a wheelchair to become a professional parachutist. I want to be able to jump out of the airplane and land alone with my wheelchair. This could be the perfect sport to practice for me because of the adrenaline that you release in each jump. That’s an expensive dream and I don’t have the money to do it yet. I can’t wait for the day that this dream can come true!

Finally, THANK YOU !

I hope you did not get bored reading my story. I use to write a lot (in Spanish, sorry!) on my Instagram account: @ismaeelcapa_mlg . It’s my own method to express, release emotions and all that feelings of powerless faced after the accident. I’ll end by saying that I’m very impatient to see how will end of all the justice part of my story. I’ll hope to have enough money to have a comfortable situation and to finally realize my dreams. Even if I am in a wheelchair for the rest of my life. All of us needs to find something that can be released from the inconvenience of being in that situation and always think about what's happening. Our life changes, but we're still alive and have to enjoy it even if it’s in a different way than before. Thank you very much for taking some precious time to read this, my story. Thanks to all of you that understand, share and comment. This is my story, the real one. I live with severe depression but try to go on and help people continue fighting.

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