"I believe that I will someday get out of this wheelchair and walk again. I believe that I'll stand and shake someone's hand again. I believe that I'll be able to take care for myself someday. That belief fuels everything I do."
The second half of the book deals with how Eric dealt with being paralyzed. Everything had been going great for him. He was in his junior year, and he definitely felt that he had a chance to make it to the NFL. But in one game, everything changed. On a kickoff, he was running toward the returned to make a tackle. His helmet hit the returner's collarbone. All of a sudden, Eric went stiff.
He was escorted away by the paramedics. The entire time, it was difficult breathing. The somber mood of the stadium along with his mother crying made Eric know that it was not good. He was not able to move anything. He could lift up his head a little bit, but he was unable to lift his arm or hand. Little did he know that this even would change his life forever.
In the hospital, he was told that he was paralyzed. Eric underwent a nine hour surgery to align his spinal column. He also needed help breathing. Many people came to visit him. His mom and his girlfriend were by his side as much as they could. His coach came by every night. It took a long time, but eventually he started breathing on his own again. Rehab helped improve the strength in Eric's muscle's. He took part in a lot of public speaking roles, and he even helped broadcast a Rutgers game. It is yet to be seen if Eric will ever be able to walk again, but he remains optimistic. He has not let him being paralyzed stop him from living life. He has helped numerous people going through the same thing.
This book has so many lessons. One of them is don't take anything for granted. Before the accident, Eric was living the life. He was a star football player with aspirations to go to the NFL. Then, a fluke accident took away his ability to move. Had his head been a couple degrees up or down, he would have gotten up like it was nothing. I have realized that anything can change in a split second, and I need to appreciate what I have. Also, Eric's dedication to rehab was very inspiring to me. I complain about having to do school work, while Eric would be extremely happy to be able to type or write. His hard work to getting better has taught me that instead of complaining about doing something I don't want to do, I should appreciate that I have the ability to actually do it. Anything can change in an instant. Eric has an extremely positive attitude, no matter what it is. If I want to get anywhere in life, having a negative attitude will do nothing to accomplish that. Having a positive attitude will help you get places. In the end, it is crucial to appreciate life and I have realized just how blessed I am. I need to make the most out of any situation I am put in, and constantly be grateful for everything life has provided me.