“Good friends are like stars. You don’t always see them, but you know they’re always there.”
I am constantly being inundated with support from my family and friends. New friends, old friends and strangers who have become friends, have shown me so much love and support since my injury. At times it truly is overwhelming when I think about the support I’ve been shown these past 15 months. This weekend was no exception.
My best friend, and Best Man, Bryan, organized the Second Annual Scott Fedor Tailgate Benefit which was held at Lehigh University and hosted by the brothers of Delta Tau Delta this past weekend. Funds were raised which will go towards a Passive Motion Therapy Bike which will aid me in keeping my muscles toned, healthy circulation and possible functional recovery. This piece of equipment is very expensive and often not covered by insurance. However, the benefits it can offer are priceless. It is because of the generosity of my fraternity brothers that I will be able to reap these benefits in the future. But their support goes deeper than this past weekend. I have received numerous donations, gifts and other type of support aids from my brothers over the past several months. Sometimes they send an e-mail to let me know something is headed my way, other times things just show up in the mail. There is such a feeling of gratitude that comes over me every time their generosity is demonstrated. The only bad thing about this past weekend was that I was not able to be there to personally thank them all. I’m sure that will change one day.
The other group of people I want to thank for their extreme generosity are my former coworkers from Calphalon. I worked at Calphalon for six years and must say that I had the most fun one can have while being productive. I worked with not only some of the brightest people I have ever worked with, but also some of the best friends I have known. As I moved away from Calphalon and Ohio, I stayed in touch with several of these coworkers. On many occasions, I was able to meet up with them through the years. This morning, Cindy, one of my good friends and former coworkers, stopped by with her husband and kids for a visit. She presented me with a very generous donation from the gang at Calphalon. The company recently held a product sale with the proceeds being donated to myself and another charity. This was done without me even knowing. This was just one of many donations that the folks at Calphalon have given me. Not only have they collectively made hardy donations in the past, but many of the employees have sent generous individual donations as well. What truly amazes me though, is that I left that company in early 2006 and they still treat me as if I still worked there, like one of their own. I can’t say how fortunate I feel to know people like those at Calphalon. Not to mention, what incredible and unbelievable products the company makes.
It’s not just Calphalon and my fraternity brothers, though, that have shown their generosity. The employees at every single other company I worked for since 1998 have shown me support and generosity — Delphi Automotive, Trex and Halex. I am grateful to all of them. And of course, the many, many other individuals who have offered their support, prayers and services to me, too many to name, I am forever grateful to as well. I feel truly blessed to have the type of friends and support network I have. It helped me weather this storm and keep moving forward at times when my tank was on empty. The greatest gift I could think of giving in return is the ability to one day move my arm and shake hands with each and everyone of you who have been there for me throughout this entire ordeal. Thank you.
I also want to thank God for the wonderful weekend of weather we had. I hate to admit it, but I stayed inside all day on Saturday watching football and never made it outside, not even for a minute. But today was a different story. After Cindy left, Kristy and I headed over to Crocker Park and sat outside a coffee shop reading and enjoying some coffee. Well, she read, while I listened to the Browns game. It was a perfect day to do nothing but enjoy it. I’ve had a lot of days like that. In all seriousness, I am thankful for days like this. Being still has offered me a tremendous amount of perspective that I otherwise might never have gained in this lifetime. I still believe that one day I will move again, however, I will not lose the perspective I gained along the way.
Tomorrow will be a busy day at Metro Hospital. I have a doctor’s appointment as well as another follow-up round of tests with the cough assist system. I’ve also been asked to participate in a national video describing some of the advances in technology being made. And of course the highlight for me will be visiting with the other spinal cord patients on the rehab floor. One thing I have come to really treasure is meeting and speaking with other spinal cord patients and their families. This is something I take very seriously, as I know what they are going through, and having someone to talk to who has been through it already can certainly help. I feel it’s my duty to “pay it forward” in this way. Besides, the more educated and aware we all are about spinal cord injuries, the more effective we will all be at someday finding a cure. And I truly believe this day will one day come!
Thank you to all of my friends for extreme generosity, prayers and support. And thank you for the prayers you offer for all of us living with a spinal cord injury. It is so greatly appreciated!