Paralinks: Worlds Wheelchair Culture
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It was said that he was born lucky, or it may have been fate, whatever, this account of a period of time in a mans life lets us know that it can happen, there is always a chance, no matter how slight, that a prognosis of being 'completely paralyzed for life', could be incorrect.

I jumped into the water while swimming in 1974 (I was 15). I remember a greenish yellow turbid light coming through the thickness of water above me. I was under the water and I could not move. I was looking at the rays of light, and could hear people laughing on the shore and music playing. But all that was happening on the other side. I was observing the world from the other side. I wanted to breath, but I couldn't get up. And there was nobody to help me. I realized that it was the end. I saw the face of my Mom, Dad, and Grandma and felt such pity for them. They will learn soon that there is no more me. But surprisingly enough, I didn't feel horror or fear. The feeling of sadness was flowing. And I died.

Then I was born. It was a different life, even though still mine. I woke up from hearing the shrill screams He drowned! My friend got me out of the water, to the shore, and to the island with strange looking statues. Somebody leaned me against one of the idols. The images of these statues are imbedded in my memory. I went into oblivion.

My spinal cord was broken - C5-C6- complete and total paralysis. From my hospital bed I saw the faces of my doctor and nurse above me. My Mom was crying. My Dad's expression was dark and ashen from sadness. All this was like an hallucination. It was like a dream from which I could not awake. The only real thing for me was the ceiling of the room with cracks and water spots. This ceiling was the only thing I could see. I was looking at it for hours, trying to find fairy landscapes, cities, people, animals... anything! One pattern reminded me of the tiger trying to jump. A fantastic crystal ship was floating on the other. I wanted to get up, to go up the stairs, to swim away from this bad dream. My parents were told that there is no hope for me to survive.

But some Force Above us holds the strings of our lives. Someone from Above looked at me. Within several months I started feeling some movement in my legs and hands. I asked for a pencil to be tied to my fingers and tried to draw. I wanted to draw the Tiger I saw on the ceiling, but could only produce a scrawl.

I graduated high-school (at home) and then - Academy of Art in Saint Petersburg Russia. I wrote Master research paper about Italian Renaissance. I started draw and paint after the accident and became an artist. I have had several personal exhibitions in different countries.

In a year after that I could move a little bit. I was told I was born lucky because after the accident I was expected to be completely paralized for life. Now I can walk with the cane, my legs and hands not quite operatable.

 My web site and art gallery is at: Click here for Anatoly web site But No longer!

Note from editor, Anatoly has dropped out from our reach. If you happen to know how to contact him please let Paralinks know.