Monday, 20 August 2012

Olivier Gingras

I realize that I still haven't talked about the day I met Olivier on my blog yet. I mean, I've been so busy with friends, my injury, soccer and everything around me that I would always tell myself that I would leave it to the next day, then the next, then the next. All this time that I've been pushing this project aside and not raising any money, Olivier is still there, in his chair, exactly the same as when we left him. I feel so bad when I think of all the times I could've worked on my project but didn't. I realize now that the summer is almost over and I haven't even acheived half of my goal yet. It's time for me to wake up!
As I am writing this right now, I can feel my hands shaking a little and my heart beating faster when I picture the first time I ever saw him. We entered his house and he was in his wheel chair, sitting next to his brother who was playing video games. His mother greeted us with a big smile and seemed very happy! We walked into the house and sat down on the couch. I'm pretty sure at that moment I was looking at Olivier, shocked. He is literally a prisoner of his own body. I couldn't picture myself being where he was. I don't even think I can spend a day like that. We talked about my project and also a little bit of everything and anything. At some point, it's just as if I forgot he was the way he was. He is such a joyful human being, smiles all the time and can even laugh at himself and his whole situation. I really don't understand how he can be so happy after all that has happened to him and I admire him so much for that. I don't think I could ever be that happy if something like that ever happened to me.
We had a look at his room and he had this machine that could carry him into his bed. He also had a special bed to make sure he doesn't develop bed sores. Also, his whole room was adapted so he could easily move around with a bathroom also adapted for him. Obviously, without all of these adjustments, Olivier would not have been able to live with his family and would have lived in a hospital for the rest of his life. If Olivier and his family wouldn't have gotten the help from the foundation of "Les Gouverneurs de l'Espoir", he would not be living with his family at the moment. He would not have as much moral support for sure. I think it's enough that he has to deal with being quadriplegic for the rest of his life that being away from your family all the time is too much. Remember what I said earlier about him being such a joyful and happy person? Do you think that would have been possible if he wasn't living with his own family right now? I don't think so.
When we left his house after about 2 hours of talking, everything I did, I thought of Olivier and how he couldn't do any of it. He couldn't do the simplest things that we do on a regular basis. For example, just opening a car door, changing a song from your iPod or simply walking. It's just so unfair. Meeting Olivier Gingras made me want to become a better person and not having to worry about the little things and enjoying life, especially. You never know what can happen at any moment. It only took one bad dive to change the rest of his life. It motivates me that much more when I do my running or activites and I find it hard and want to give up because I think of him and how he would probably give anything to be in my shoes at that moment.
Some lyrics from the song Fix You, by Coldplay, I feel describe this exact situation and I would like to share them with you.
"An the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can't replace
And I will try to fix you"


  1. Awww tu m'as fait pleurer ce matin Laurence...comme c'est beau ce que tu as écris. You are so right, we must appreciate the freedom we have to do the simple things :) Love you!

  2. Chere Lolo, un grand coeur plein d'amour!

  3. Oufff... C'est un privilège d'avoir la santé, c'est tellement un grand privilège n'est-ce pas?! Un très beau texte plein d'émotion. Bravo Laurence!

  4. Thanks, c'est vraiment gentil
    Jacques G.

  5. It happened September 6, 2009
    Jacques G.