SCIO Community Magazine
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Wendy Murphy

Marking a Milestone

For those of you who do not recognize me I am a former City TV newsroom reporter who, at one time, was given the opportunity to challenge the public’s perception on what we as wheelchair users are capable of when given the opportunity.

In less than a two-minute spot I brought stories to life through television, using a camera and microphone. I did this in the sincere hope of dispelling the public’s limited perception of what the physically challenged community was actually capable of achieving.

August 6, 2019, will mark my 35th year using a wheelchair with a lot to celebrate since that unforgettable day. There have been government programs implemented such as the Accessible Parking Permit and the Ontario Disability Support Program, to name just two, both designed to better assist people with disabilities. Today, job opportunities are often made available through organizations like SCIO, and simply seeing more people who use wheelchairs actively participating in life post spinal cord injury has become the welcomed norm today.

There is little doubt that living with a spinal cord injury certainly has its challenges. It is through our ability to move past any difficult circumstance that we move forward in life, with much to be garnered when we refuse to lose hope in all that is still around us, and yet to be achieved. It comes down to our individual attitude that will ultimately determine the life that unfolds before us. This is an important factor when making choices and considering the relevance of positive thinking in how things will ultimately turn out. Seeing the glass half-full theory applies here.

Always one to see the glass half full, I decided there would be no better way to commemorate this 35-year milestone than by writing my memoir. A diary of stories that I hope will offer insight and inspiration to its reader. Determined to expose the issue of disability at a time it seemed society was finally ready to accept, and willing to assist, I was able to break down existing barriers. It was through an unconventional approach that I took on new challenges, all in the pursuit of social change. Modelling, acting and finally newsroom reporting all became part of my mission while hoping to make a difference in the larger world, exemplifying all that one, regardless of their physical limitations, is capable of achieving when given the opportunity.

Wendy’s book is published by Iguana Books. The book will be launched in September, and will be available to pre order on Amazon, with worldwide availability as of September 4, 2019.

Wendy Murphy | Summer 2019

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