Today perhaps is the most inspiring day in 2009. Guest speaker,Mr Gilbert Tan, a c5 SCI tetraplegic came to gave us a talk about his life as a disabled.This talk aims to give us a picture of how life is like from the client's perspective. Initially, I thought it was yet another boring talk that most of us always always have.But I was darn wrong.
He was engaging, with a sense of humour.HE was really optimistic and "handicapable".How the doctor gave him only 5 years to live after the accident and now he's still alive after 26 years post-accident and the doctor is dead. The way he deals with problems really makes me realise how fortunate I am to be abled,with fully intact senses.He used to play the guitar, but now he can't. As a fellow guitarist, I know how much this could have meant to him,to lose the ability to move his fingers(UTS:no fine motor skills).
His story also made me realise how as OTs and PTs, we can touch lives,if Gilbert's PT had not told him, " Being disabled is not unabled. Not handicapped, but handicapable." (Writings- My Expereience as an Disabled Person ) Perhaps, he may not have stayed strong and be what he is today.
He sang for us two of his composition 'Live life' and 'Can I Wash Your Feet', his words touched me. For once, pitch did not matter to me, but the words and feeling put into the song. An important lesson learnt today: Disabled can be THIS abled. The 5C's in life was also really meaningful,not anything more than material gains, but more spiritual.(it's getting long and late, shan't elaborate on his 5C's..)
"Singaporeans are perpetually busy, though they are generous at giving cash and kind, the thought of giving up precious time deters too many from being a friend to the disadvantaged, the disabled, the poor and needy. Learning that a disabled person still chooses to do community work will perhaps confront the excuses and reasons and maybe lead a few to consider making a difference in people's lives." - Gilbert Tan
So here's the link to his website!He totally inspired me that I should be a good OT.=D
Living Life With Gilbert Tan- Mouth Artist, Composer, Singer
(attempting to do proper referencing..lolx)