This is my story..
years since the accident
days spent in a wheelchair
It all happened one summer day in the year 2000, during a trip to the countryside. Every kid looks forward to that moment when the school bell declares the school closed for the summer, when there’s no more homework to do, when all the worries are over. What started as a nice adventure in the company of my cousins (in a town called Targu Secuiesc) became a nightmare. It all happened so quickly that I found myself unable to react…literally.
It was a hot summer day in August and we decided the weather was perfect for some splashing. We knew the perfect spot for swimming too: what used to be the channel of a river, which had in the meantime become a sort of a lake. I wasn’t the only ‘experienced’ swimmer, nor was I the only one brave enough to dive. We were all just a group of kids: happy, carefree, playful and… irresponsible.
The height of the lake shore was of around 3 ft. (1 m), which was quite enough for the brave ones amongst us to perform the perfect dive. I felt braver and more engaged with every plunge and wanted to leap even further, to dive in the middle of the lake. Dripping wet, full of adrenalin and wanting to do better with each plunge, I kept going back to the same spot on the shore for a new leap. The soil was soft and wet, buckling under the weight of my body, a body that seemed more and more agile, quicker and more determined to dive again and again and again until there was no other ‘again’ anymore. There was however a ‘last time’. The earth had become so wet that my foot slipped and I hadn’t gathered the much-needed momentum to be able to leap properly, so I landed on my head, with a plunge that was surreally mundane, yet unnatural and ultimately stupid.
The fall was followed by a sharp pain in my neck. I tried to get up, but my body had stopped listening to my commands. Bewildered and insecure, I waited for someone to come and help me. A friend of my cousins’ called an ambulance and I was taken first to the hospital in Covasna, later to the one in Brasov, where the doctors told me there was nothing they could do