I was lying in hospital with tears running down my face, wondering how I would cope with this horrendous injury. This spinal cord injury wasn't just a setback, it was a life sentence. I was stuck with a body that couldn't move or feel anything from the chest down.
I lost my career as a chiropractor, I'd no longer compete in the sport I had just reached the highest level, my four year relationship was falling apart and I was scared. Petrified what the future had in store.
Yet amongst a turmoil of emotions, I was grateful. The ward I was in was for patients who needed a ventilator to breathe. I was on a ventilator because I had been seriously ill with pneumonia where as the others had high level spinal cord injuries and were likely to need a ventilator all their lives.
I slowly wiped my tears away and tried to focus on how lucky I was to be able to pick up the tissue, whilst the others in my ward relied on others to do something so simple.
It is easy to understand why I have felt passionate about my fundraising to help the incredible research so that one day paralysis will be reversed. It is not just about walking again- it is far far more than that.
I will never forget the feeling of a nurse (who I didn't like) having to empty my bowel. I won't go into detail- but let's just say having his finger up my bum was a situation I would rather not be in! Sure it wasn't great for him too and I should have been thankful he was willing to help me, but the truth is I hated it.
I remember being 'tutted' at because once again the bed needed changing because my useless bladder let me down and the bed was soaked, ten minutes after they had just changed it. I clearly 'pissed' that member of staff off!!
I used to love to soak in the bath but what is the point when you have to cling on to stop yourself sliding and can't feel the water. Or a night out when all your friends head to the dance floor and I was desperate to join them but it wasn't the same sat in a wheelchair.
Although at the back of my mind, I knew I was lucky- it just took time to adapt to my new situation and learn how to live the best life I can.
My fundraising certainly gave me a goal and a purpose. It has been fulfilling and the support I have had has been overwhelming.
This year ended on a high. I spoke at a conference for the IAAF and in the evening 'a fright of a lifetime' (flight with newly qualified paralysed pilot) was auctioned- it raised a staggering £26,000 for Nicholls Spinal Injury Foundation. I better do a smooth landing for the winner!
This has taken my grand total over £902,000 so the milestone of a million pounds is in sight.
Anyone who has followed my journey will know my fundraising has come from a multitude of events; walking marathons and events in the bionic suit, handcycling, flying, motorcycling, auctions, race day collections, evening dinners with entertainment, organising half marathons, speaking at schools etc
I have witnessed such generosity and I know the money has helped some amazing charities.
So whilst one million pounds is within reach, I also know there is a lot I need to do to get there.
So I am hoping, with the help from others, I can use what has happened to me to help many people in the future.
So here's an important message of the best way to deal with adversity...
It is to find a purpose as it becomes a guiding light.
With purpose, setbacks transform into stepping stones, leading you towards fulfilment amid life's unpredictable journey.