Emma Carey is loving life at the moment. The girl from Burleigh, Australia has always been a go-getter and still is to this day.
But it has been a long road to get to that point.
In the summer of 2013, Carey and a friend Jemma went on a trip to Europe. They were backpacking their way through the continent, having the time of their lives.
A week into the trip, the two of them went skydiving in Switzerland. It was Carey’s first time going, but she was ready to go for it, no matter what.
But while she was falling to the Earth, something went wrong with the parachute, and she crashed into the ground.
The accident broke her back and pelvis, and she almost instantly could not feel anything from the waist down.
Carey was immediately taken to a hospital, and her Europe trip came to an abrupt end.
Doctors told her that it’s likely she would never walk again, and Carey didn’t know how to take it.
“I remember being more upset that I would never feel happiness again, rather than upset that I would never use my legs again,” she told Gold Coast Bulletin.
In just one week, she went from traveling across Europe to being told that her life would never be the same. And one of her immediate feelings was regret.
“I had lived my whole life, 20 years, in a fully functioning body, and I had not appreciated it at all,” she said.
At first, she struggled with how her life would change from that point on.
But over time, she decided that she wasn’t going to let her condition get her down.
It took awhile for Carey to get used to not being able to walk freely like she used to, but once she was used to it, she began working towards getting out of her wheelchair.
She kept up with her rehab, and she made progress slowly, but surely.
As of today, she is able to stand and walk on her own, most of the time with no help.
Though the accident did cause her to have months of rehabilitation, she remembers that day as one that changed her life. And in a way, it gave her a new lease on life.
She tattooed the date of her accident on her arm and calls it her “re-birthday.”
“It is the date I realized my love for life and became the person I am today,” Carey said.
Since that day, Carey has used social media to show her journey and hopes to inspire others.
Her Instagram page has over 106 thousand followers, which means her story is clearly resonating with many others.
Many of her pictures come with a caption that talks about certain parts of her struggles. But every time, she makes sure to tell their followers not only how they can overcome their own obstacles, but how everything she has overcome has made her better off for it.
“I am insanely lucky,” she said.
Even if she still struggles with walking in general, Carey knows that she’s come a long way, and is thankful for every bit of progress that has been achieved over the years.