Jonathan Plante

A life turned upside down

On March 12, 2007, at the age of 26, my life was turned upside down after a serious accident. A carpenter by trade, I fell and severed my spinal cord, leaving me a paraplegic.

Nine days later, the six most life-changing weeks of my life began at the Institut de réadaptation Gingras-Lindsay-de-Montréal. From our very first meeting, Philippe, my physiotherapist, asked me if I was ready to push myself to the limit, and I replied: “I’ll push you to your limit if you don’t make me work hard enough.” So, Philippe pushed me to the very limit of my abilities.

Of course, I had a lot of grieving to do, but I also realized that I could do everything, even though nothing would ever be the same as before. I had to relearn everything and take a good long look at myself in order to tame my impatience with the process.

Without this period of rehabilitation at the Institute, I would not have the life that I have rebuilt today in terms of my family life with my spouse and my two beautiful children, my professional life and my personal life. Now, I can lead a normal life despite my limitations, without any—or almost any—limitations. And that’s because of the support and guidance I received during the most difficult challenge of my life.

The Institute changed my life. I learned that courage and willpower could pave the way to a new and wonderful life. In appreciation for the incredible life I have today, I am happy to play a role with the Foundation. It’s my way of giving back.

Jonathan Plante
Injured on the job in 2007