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May 25, 2022
Woman Who Was Left Paralyzed in Scooter Accident Visits Over 30 Countries With Her Soulmate

Woman Who Was Left Paralyzed in Scooter Accident Visits Over 30 Countries With Her Soulmate

A woman paralyzed in a scooter accident during her teenage years has refused to let life in a wheelchair hold her back. After some time spent dedicated to her recovery, she found the perfect way to see the world: in the arms of her soulmate.

(Courtesy of Giulia Lamarca)
Italian native Giulia Lamarca, who is a content creator and travel blogger, was 18 and returning from work with her then-boyfriend on his scooter when they got into an accident.

Recalling the day in 2011 that changed her life forever, the 30-year-old told The Epoch Times: “It wasn’t anything special, we just slipped during a turn. … We were probably going too fast, and my boyfriend of that time was driving when we slipped.

“It was so quick, I just remember thinking, ‘Don’t fall over him or he will get hurt.’ Right after the accident, I was conscious, and I felt a great pain in my foot. A moment later, the pain rose to my back, and then I realized that something was really wrong.”

(Courtesy of Giulia Lamarca)
Giulia had broken a vertebra. She had surgery that same night to place two bars and eight screws in her spine. However, after having sustained damage to her spinal cord, after a few months, she was diagnosed with spinal cord injury. So began nine months in hospital with a dedicated physiotherapy program where Giulia learned how to move again, and that she would leave her sporting ambitions behind.

“Pretty much everything was a daily challenge at the time. … I couldn’t even get dressed by myself,” she said. “Somehow I overcame these problems, mainly because I wanted to get better, and I was actually recovering my autonomy bit by bit.”

A personal mantra, “I can do this,” helped Giulia stay on top of her struggles. Her family had already endured her brother’s battle with leukemia as a child—thankfully, he recovered—and she didn’t wish to bring a similar burden on them.

(Courtesy of Giulia Lamarca)
She began every day trying to elicit a smile by reading jokes, but says it didn’t always work.

Then along came Andrea.

“Andrea was a physiotherapy student, I met him some days after the accident,” said Giulia. “He came to say hello because our fathers used to work together. … Having someone ‘on the other side’ when you are in a hospital can be very useful sometimes.”

Weeks later, Giulia began seeing Andrea every day. The two began spending a lot of time together, since Andrea had to “study” Giulia. After Andrea’s internship ended, the two began to go out as friends and have conversations about everything. As their friendship blossomed, Giulia and Andrea became more than just friends.

Though she feared he wasn’t serious about a romantic relationship, their connection was undeniable. Andrea soon found a way to reassure her, and he wanted them to see the world together.

(Courtesy of Giulia Lamarca)
“One day we were sitting outside the hospital, when he asked me, ‘What if we go to Australia as soon as I graduate, and you get out from the hospital?’” Giulia said. “I thought he was crazy, but I said yes anyway.” Since then, they’ve visited 30 countries together, collecting photos and videos of their epic adventures along the way.

The couple’s conquests include Machu Picchu, the Great Wall of China, and the sacred boulder of Sigiriya, Sri Lanka, where Andrea carried Giulia on his back for 1,000 steps to its summit.

In an account of their story shared with Love What Matters, Giulia marveled: “My husband has literally carried me places I cannot access otherwise.”

(Courtesy of Giulia Lamarca)
Through her travels around the world, Giulia shares that she has learned and experienced a lot in the process.

“Travel teaches us a lot about the world, and a lot about ourselves,” she told The Epoch Times. “When you have an accident, there is always a ‘before’ and an ‘after,’ and if you don’t find a way to let go of the before, you will end up living in the past.

“During our travels, nobody knows me; I am just Giulia, so I can start over and be who I really am, not just who I used to be.”

(Courtesy of Giulia Lamarca)
Giulia has not walked since her accident, but today she’s independent. She drives and works, and has even designed the couple’s home. In September 2021, she and her husband welcomed their daughter, Sophie.

The family also share their daily adventures on Instagram.

(Courtesy of Giulia Lamarca)
While currently based in Italy, Giulia and her family have begun a “world tour” this year and will be living all around the world for at least one year. The wife, mother, and globetrotter advocates that everyone find their passion.

“You really need to find what you love and stick to that,” she said. “Don’t follow other people too much. … Take your time and find your way.

“For me, it has been travel; for some, sport or family. Set your goals a bit at a time. Start thinking about tomorrow, then the next week, the next month, the next year, and soon you can start to program your life again.”

(Courtesy of Giulia Lamarca)
(Courtesy of Giulia Lamarca)
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