Jenny Alexander

Age:  23
Post Injury: 20 months
 
Hello, my name is Jenny Alexander.  My fiance (George) and I have moved from Reno, Nevada to Orem, Utah to attend the Sit Tall Stand Tall program.
 
On November 4, 2005, I was involved in a car collision, which injured my spinal cord at level C-5.  The result was a "complete" (or ASIA-A) spinal cord injury.  This landed us at the infamous Craig Hospital.  We arrived, expecting weight rooms, parallel bars, and other physical rehabilitation equipment, which we figured was necessary to re-learn walking skills.  My goal was clear: WALK.  Not live in a wheel-chair.  The aim of the hospital was to teach me how to live in a wheelchair, which was not good enough.  For the $400,000 bill I received, I expected MUCH more rehabilitation.
 
We were told of the Sit Tall Stand Tall program, by a fellow patient at Craig.  The intial reaction by Craig's staff was negative, so we trusted our doctors and therapists, and kind of forgot about it.
 
After a year of jumping through Medicaid's hoops, paying for physical therapy out of pocket, and even attending non-traditional methods of recovery, I was highly dissatisfied.  I expected more progress.  I remembered the name of the Sit Tall Stand Tall program, and went to greath lengths to contact Mr. Weber.  He suggested an evaluation.
 
Within a month we were conveniently located in Orem, Utah (we arrived June 9, 2007).  We have relocated, and re-configured so much of our lives for this opportunity.
 
Since we've arrived, I've noticed significant strength gains.  I've increased the strength in my triceps, which, I was told, I would have no control of.  My hands, which also are "theoretically" unable to work, have also strenthened, allowing me to grip, significantly better.  Post-injury I could not sit upright, now I have the stamina to stand upright.  It's commonly commented to me that I don't appear quadraplegic, at all.  My posture has improved and we're learning the importance of a postive mentality.  Mr. Weber was quick to teach us that we are as handicapped as we allow ourselves to be.  We quickly got rid of as much adaptive equipment as we could, including a modified van.  We have learned new functional skills, which were suggested we'd never enjoy again.
 
We learned right away of the strength of positive energy, as we noticed how many smiles we saw at Sit Tall Stand Tall, when compared with Craig Hospital, and the dismal expressions and outlooks common therein.  We're very excited for this opportunity.  We notice improvement on a daily basis.