Hi my name is Rozanna and I am a single mom. I became disabled through a seatbelt injury in 1994. At the time of my accident, I had a 20 month old and a 5 month old. When I came out of the hospital, my son wasn’t walking yet. So, the biggest challenge I had was getting him from the ground to my lap.
Luckily, I have always been athletic. I would lean down, hold onto my chair, grab him and drag him up to my level. I also invented a trapping method using the hooks on my wheelchair and a bungee-cord. My daughter was a little older but she was thin. I would essentially put two kids on my lap and bungee-cord them in. So, whenever we went places, they couldn’t escape.
Once I readjusted to my new life, I returned to sports and recreation. I got involved in wheeling. I would wheel through my local parks. I also played a bit of tennis, but I found that it was a little too much for me. Then, I found other activities I could involve my children with, such as biking and skating, which means that I have to keep up with them.
We then discovered billiards and bowling. I enjoy playing pool because it’s something that’s easy to do because you’re at the height of the table. Actually, you have a better vantage point because you can see things. You can see shots that standing people can’t.
In bowling, the difficulty is finding a place where you can bowl. In other words, you need to get down in the lanes. That’s the biggest problem I’ve found being in a chair. But, what I like about my bowling alley, Parkway Bowl, is that they have an area where I can access the lanes. And I don’t have to be a professional bowler; I can just wing it so to speak. I throw the ball and if it makes it, it makes it. The great thing is that I can do it with my children.
I have also volunteered for organizations that promote physical activity. There are a number of operations out there trying to get people with physical disabilities more involved in athletics and keeping fit. I think it's great because one of the biggest challenges we have in the disabled community is staying fit.
This project was supported, in part by grant number 90PR3001, from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration for Community Living policy.