Hope is an Action

Nelson Quong with his SideStix

This piece was written by Nelson Quong, a member of our SideStix family and a previous Ambassador of the Month. For more about Nelson and his story, read his interview here

When I was first looking for crutches, I was looking for something that could not only help bear my weight and help me walk but could also help me accomplish all the goals I had prior to my injury. I wanted to walk through life confidently and do so with less pain, help take care of my elderly parents, help others through volunteer work, and be able to exercise and still accomplish some of my athletic goals. With SideStix, I have found the ability to do all of this and so much more!

My SideStix have given me the ability to stand and move around comfortably and confidently. Immediately after an impact injury, I felt a major part of my life slip away. I was left with a very limiting chronic pain in my legs and joints. This not only affected me physically, but also mentally. My confidence took a major blow. Thanks to my SideStix, I can now mobilize with much less pain. I can make it through my daily life much more safely, and accomplish what would ordinarily be considered mundane tasks by being adaptable. SideStix have allowed me to return to life and do so confidently. Recently, a woman I didn’t know stopped me and said she noticed how confidently I move while walking! That’s something I never heard before purchasing these wonderful tools.

Nelson Quong standing with his SideStix

SideStix have been simply invaluable with helping me to assist my parents with shopping and medical appointments. I also look forward to volunteering with children and helping them not to experience the darkness of losing abilities, whether due to sickness or physical injury, and know there is hope; that sometimes life can improve just by working at it and being adaptable. These excellent devices allow me to accomplish and enjoy these very challenging yet cherished parts of my life. As far as athletic goals or just being able to do meaningful exercise of any kind, I thought that the beginning of my physical setbacks was the beginning of the end for my competitive endeavours. After being very active and racing bikes, running, and tower running (running up skyscrapers) for seventeen years, this prospect sent me into a deep depression. The fact that I was beset with pain and difficulty walking after spending so long as an athlete gave me anxiety and panic attacks and drove me inwards. When I first saw SideStix, I was desperate and hoped these devices would give me some of my life and identity as an athlete back. They did all this and more! These amazing mobility tools have allowed me to modify many activities, not just in everyday life, but also athletically. I am now making athletic goals again. Some of them are realistic and some of them, well, maybe not so much, but they do give me goals and hope. I guess that’s what SideStix represent the most to me: Hope!

Nelson Quong with SideStix co-founders Sarah Doherty and Kerith Perreur-Lloyd

“Hope happens when we have the ability to set realistic goals (I know where I want to go). We are able to figure out how to achieve those goals, including the ability to stay flexible and develop alternative routes (I know how to get there, I’m persistent, and I can tolerate disappointment and try again). We believe in ourselves (I can do this!).”
-Brené Brown, The Gifts of Imperfection

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