Monday, 10 September 2012

Nick Vujicic: A true inspiration 'to' life

A life without arms and legs –HARD TO IMAGINE but this was not what came in the path of Nick Vujicic’s perception for life. Nick Vujicic was born in 1982 in Melbourne, Australia with tetra-amelia syndrome, a rare disorder characterised by the absence of all four limbs. Without any medical explanation or warning, Nicholas Vujicic (pronounced 'Vooy-cheech') came into the world with neither arms nor legs. Having had an uneventful pregnancy and no family history to expect this condition, indescribable shock filled the hospital room that pivotal 4th of December day. A limbless son was not what nurse Dushka Vujicic, and her husband Pastor Borris Vujicic had been expecting. When Nick was born his father was so shocked he left the hospital room to vomit. His distraught mother couldn't bring herself to hold him until he was four months old. His disability came without any medical explanation - a rare occurrence called Phocomelia - and Nick and his parents spent many years asking why this cruel trick would happen to them. ‘My mother was a nurse and she did everything right during pregnancy but she still blamed herself,' he said. ‘It was so hard for them but right from the start they did their best to make me independent. ‘My dad put me in the water at 18 months and gave the courage to learn how to swim.

Throughout his childhood Nick dealt not only with the typical challenges of school and adolescence such as bullying and self-esteem issues; he also struggled with depression and loneliness as he questioned why he was different to all the other kids surrounding him; why he was the one born without arms and legs. He wondered what was the purpose behind his life, or if he even had a purpose. After a lot of frustration and feeling like the odd one out in school, at seven years of age Nick tried out some specially designed electronic arms and hands, in hopes that he would be more like the other kids. He began to master the daily tasks of life. He learned to write using the two toes on his left foot with a special grip that slid onto his big toe. He learned to use a computer and type using the "heel and toe" method. He learned to throw tennis balls, play drum pedals, get himself a glass of water, comb his hair, brush his teeth, answer the phone and shave.

In Year 7 he was elected captain of his school and worked with the student council on fund-raising events for local charities and disability campaigns. When he was seventeen, he started to give talks at his prayer group, and eventually started his non-profit organisation, Life Without Limbs.In 2005 Vujicic was nominated for the "Young Australian of the Year" Award. Today, this young man has accomplished more than most people even twice his age. Nick recently made the massive move from Brisbane, Australia to California, USA, where he is the president of an international non-profit organization, and also has his own motivational speaking company; Attitude Is Altitude. Since his first motivational speaking engagement back when he was 19, Nick has traveled around the world, sharing his story with millions of people and speaking to a range of different groups.

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