This Woman in a Wheelchair Has Traveled All Over the World With the Help of Her Husband
When they reach an area where her wheelchair cannot travel, he carries her.
Giulia Lamarca, 28, is a psychologist, trainer, and travel blogger based in Turin, Italy. On October 6, 2011, she got into a motorcycle accident with her boyfriend at the time, and she lost her ability to walk. The diagnosis was, as one would imagine, absolutely devastating at first. "I was mostly sad about the little things that I was going to lose, like going to my best friend's house to watch movies, given that her place wasn't wheelchair-friendly," Giulia told Best Life. "I was also scared for my future."
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She got through the emotional ordeal by staying positive, maintaining her sense of humor, and taking things one day at a time.
"I knew I had to be strong for my family," she said. "I regained my sense of independence step by step (no pun intended). In the beginning, that meant just being able to sit upright on my own. Then it meant being able to go to the hospital ward. Now, it means I can drive, go to work, and travel anywhere in the world."
She began doing physiotherapy treatment with a young medical student named Andrea, and—in a movie-like twist—the two fell in love.
At first, the prospect of getting into a relationship again terrified Giulia. "My relationship with the boy I had the accident with ended really badly," she said. "And I didn't believe anyone could love a person in my condition."
But Andrea did. After being friends for nearly a year, she wrote him a note saying, "I want to be your girlfriend," to which he replied, "You have been for a while."
They got married on March 13, 2016, and, since then, have visited 25 countries and more than 80 cities together.
Some of her favorite places are Asia and Australia, mostly for how accessible they are. After all, traveling in a wheelchair can be a true challenge, so she's grateful to the countries that seem to be trying to make it easier for those with disabilities.
"Depending on where you travel and where you live, it might be not more challenging than going to work every day. For example, it's a lot easier to travel all around Japan by train than it is to shop here in Italy," she said.
Of course, Andrea is always there to help. When they reach an area where her wheelchair cannot follow, he carries her—up thousands of steps and onto glaciers.
What's more romantic than that?
Giulia hopes that her story will inspire people and help anyone who has paraplegia know that they can still find love and achieve all of their hopes and dreams despite their seemingly physical limitations.
"If the rules you used to live by don't fit anymore, change them, and create new ones," Giulia said. "Find your way to be free again and find what and who makes you happy again!"
And for more proof that your body doesn't define you, check out this story about the writer with a rare genetic disorder who had the most inspiring response to being bullied on Twitter.
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