I’d like to tell you my story. My husband and I were riding our motorcycle on Route 138 in Maskinongé. It was June 24, 2015, the early days of summer. On our way back, after having treated ourselves to an ice cream cone, a car veered out of its lane…and hit us head on. At very high speed. I flew 100 metres through the air. 100 metres…and landed in the ditch. Michel, my husband of 14 years, died from his injuries.
It was all so fast. I was taken to hospital where the health team cleaned my wounds and saved my right leg. Then, two weeks later, they amputated my left leg. I also had a brain injury and serious fractures.
These are the facts. The diagnosis. But beyond all of that, there was the pain and the loss of all my markers—with my loving companion at the top of the list. I was grieving and seriously injured. I felt uprooted, unable to think about the future.
When I was admitted to the Institut de réadaptation Gingras-Lindsay-de-Montréal (IRGLM), seven weeks after the accident, I was completely overwhelmed. The word rehabilitation was beyond my grasp. It was an impossible hurdle.
In fact, there are no words powerful enough to describe all of the relentless work that goes into rehabilitation. It’s a long journey, and every little thing learned is a huge challenge, a mountain to scale. I had to start from zero and relearn every daily gesture, one by one. Something as simple as getting dressed caused moments of discouragement and rage, but, at one point, everything started to turn into small victories, scored one at a time.
Above all, my physical rehabilitation at IRGLM involved a devoted team of professionals with top-notch expertise and big hearts, as well as privileged access to the very best care and technology. It was at this point that I understood the tangible and vital impact of the REA Foundation. I do not wish rehabilitation on anyone. That said, it is reassuring to know that the REA Foundation is there to fund concrete projects that directly improve the daily lives of people in rehabilitation. It humanizes the care.
During this holiday period, and because I am well placed to witness its impact, I am calling on your deep compassion to support the REA Foundation. Its funding is key to ensuring the future of rehabilitation.
My story is similar to those of thousands of people who have to go through rehabilitation, after a stroke, a spinal cord injury, hearing loss, language impairment or an amputation. Thanks to your precious support, they will have access to cutting-edge technology, personalized care and first-rate rehabilitation professionals. Give the REA Foundation the power of its ambitions.
Your donation will have more impact than you could imagine. You will make it possible for people with a disability to find meaning, to remain resilient and positive about the future…even when nothing is going their way, nothing is going as fast as they would like and they feel like their entire world has fallen apart.
To face these physical rehabilitation challenges, we need support and encouragement.
Thank you for supporting the REA Foundation.
Isabelle Boisvert, patient
P.-S. – Making a donation to the REA Foundation means supporting the future of rehabilitation at the Institut de réadaptation Gingras-Lindsay-de-Montréal, the Centre de réadaptation Lucie-Bruneau and the Institut Raymond-Dewar.