There is a quote that Grant shares during his presentations and it is one that resonates with me to the core…Perhaps also because we saw this quote together while we were riding through the Nevada desert on Grant’s BMW GS motorcycle heading off for a climbing adventure in Zion, Utah. There I was on the back of this incredible machine, geared up to the nines (safety has always been the #1 priority to G), headphones on, arms wrapped around the love of my life, feeling unlimited, free and like we had the world at our feet. I had that moment, you know, when you feel like “Ok, everything I have been through, the ups and downs, the standing in my truth even when it wasn’t comfortable, all makes sense in this moment…I have finally reached my happy place, I am at peace”. And just as I am in this blissful state, we ride by a sign (literally in the middle of the Nevada desert) that says, “Change is Inevitable, Growth is Optional.” Now of course Grant and I couldn’t talk about it at the time (you know helmets, 75 mph wind, headphones), but I knew he had seen the quote as well, and it had stuck with him too. As I reflect back on this moment, sometimes I like to think this might have been a little gift from the Universe preparing us and giving us a tool which we would later draw upon for strength, courage and a reminder of the incredible power we all have inside ourselves as human beings to consciously choose what we do with and how we react to the many changes in our lives.
Now as we all know, change, even if it’s something we plan for, something we welcome – is still a process and a challenge. And if it’s something we do not plan for, want or create, it can be even more challenging to remember, “Growth is Optional.” But the truth still remains…”Change is Inevitable.”
So why all this talk of change? Well, as Grant and I have forged ahead on this path of spinal cord injury recovery toward his goal of 120% we have known we would need to continue to create and welcome change…even if it made us uncomfortable. Starting back in March, Grant and I began selling things, giving things away, and letting go to prepare us for our next leap of faith… A journey to embark upon a Healing Tour to work with and find the modalities/practitioners/science throughout the world that could positively affect not only Grant’s recovery but gain knowledge and skills to help others with SCI and other neurological diseases like MS, Parkinson’s, etc. Our plan is to visit some of the places/people we have already been to, to dive deeper into the methods/modalities and better document the experience, as well as seek out new possibilities, people and places. We feel like this is the next step on our mission to infuse the world with positivity, to create change and to get Grant and I dancing the waltz once again.
So we decided to start this Healing Tour with a place and person that we love, respect and have gained unparalleled results with. The kind of healing and results that moved Grant from walking in crutches to walking in canes, the kind of healing that has made sleeping muscles awaken…the kind of therapy I know with every ounce of my being will bring Grant and I back to the dance floor waltzing once again… It was time to go back to Maui to work with Alejandra Monsalve.
OK great, so let’s get this healing journey started… This is what we wanted, so let’s make it happen and really how hard could it be to pack everything up, put it all in storage and journey to an island? Well to tell you the truth it was a challenging process, it was hard and at times and very emotional. Everything from realizing we were going to be away from our friends, our family, my grandparents, away from our community, away from our support system & foundation, and… temporary away from our fur child, Obie – to the crazy things like me selling my couch and drum coffee table which held great meaning for me – to Grant selling all of his mountain bikes and completely getting out of our comfort zones… All the while battling with the question, “Are we doing the right thing?” Of course we knew in our hearts the answer was, “yes”, and with each step we took forward toward making this goal a reality (a goal that we have been working on for over a year) we gained more and more confidence and strength in the decision. Throughout this journey we have allowed ourselves to be guided – this situation was no different, and we would continue to do whatever it took for Grant to make a full recovery.
I have always believed, and have done my best to live my life with the reminder, that life happens out on the skinny branches – for that is where the fruit is. This concept to me is the essence of living life to the fullest… It can be scary, exciting, grounding and exhilarating when your feet are off the ground. To live, to breathe standing in your truth, and to know that although I might not always be in control of the change which occurs in my life, I am certainly in control of how I react to it, what emotions I attach to it, and ultimately how I choose to move forward from these endlessly occurring opportunities for personal growth.
So I guess you could say we are on our own version of an “Eat, Pray, Love” experience, and this first phase of our journey would be titled, “Move.” Movement is the essence of life; the movement of our bodies, our thoughts, and our spirits… We are constant energy in motion – even when we are being still we are still moving. This “Move” portion of our journey has first begun in Maui, Hawaii and will continue for as long as it takes to get Grant’s legs moving, get his toes moving, his calves moving, and to keep his body moving in the ways he dreams about every hour of every day.
All of this would not be possible if it were not for the incredible people in our lives supporting and empowering this dream to toward fruition. Gratitude is overflowing from our hearts… Gratitude for our parents, my brother, sister-in-law, incredible nephew (and of course our beautiful niece Abby), and our friends whom worked tirelessly to get us moved out of our house and into storage, and who have unconditionally loved and cheered us forward no matter how steep the hill lay before us. Gratitude for the phenomenal High Fives Foundation who continues to believe in and empower Grant’s recovery, to the incredible generosity of those who continue to donate to the High Fives Foundation into Grant’s athlete empowerment fund (allowing us to work with the best), to the phenomenal Mancuso family who have inspired to much healing, to our Haiku Ohana (family) who were an answer to a prayer for providing not just a place to rent, but a place that is magical, healing and overflowing in it’s beauty (thank you is not big enough), and to our incredible Hawaii Ohana who continue to open doors and cheer as Grant literally walks through them. Endless gratitude to each and everyone of you for your social media shout outs, to reading Grant’s book (Two Feet Back), and for your endlessly inspiring texts and reachouts! Gratitude to the clients who book Grant for speaking engagements to share “The Power of Positivity”, and HUGE thanks to our incredible sponsors (Navitas Naturals, BioProtein, GoPro, Balanced Body, Boost Creative, Spine Nevada, TL Waveskis, The Sensus, and BigTruck Brand), and to every single person who is pushing forward in their own life to pursue their dreams regardless of challenge… YOU inspire us! Thank you from our hearts…
Throughout this journey I want to share with you not only what is happening in therapy but the other insights, experiences and moments we have. It is our desire to share because Grant and I believe as human beings it is in our nature to learn from one another, by simply being a witness to each other lives, stories and moments. I believe we are meant to celebrate each others triumphs, to be there to hold one another up during our moments of struggle, and to empower our fellow man to constantly live the highest versions of ourselves.
I want to know of your journeys; how you move through the expected and unexpected changes of life…I want to hear from you – post on social media using hashtag “choosepositivitynow”. I want us to be a powerful reminder to one another that “Change is Inevitable, Growth is Optional” – John C. Maxwell. I look forward to growing together…
Namaste` – The Naa ~ a.k.a Shawna