I first went skiing when I was 27 – I wasn’t very keen but my husband insisted, I always preferred a sunny holiday and the thought of cold, wet snow didn’t inspire me much! We went to Soll in Austria and when the week ended I was heartbroken that it had come to an end so quickly – I had had the best week of my life. It was exciting, exhilarating, challenging and just great fun! I couldn’t wait for the next winter to come around! We went skiing a few times but then we took a break mainly because we had children, a mortgage and we just simply couldn’t afford it.
I was lucky because I was working in a school and I got invited to attend all their ski trips which even though we had responsibilities looking after our young students we also had free ski time so I always got my ‘fix’.When our twins were 6 we went on our first ‘family’ holiday. The kids took to it like ‘ducks to water’ and after that we regularly went skiing with them. They, of course, were soon better than we were, I often found myself struggling to get down black mogul runs to keep up with them but it was all part of the fun trying to keep up with them. We’d race down slopes and laugh so much together, we created so many amazing memories.
In May 2016 I fell out of my loft at home and rendered myself paralysed from the waist. I was devastated. I was such an active person and my life just fell apart – I had to come to terms with the fact that I would never walk again or do the things I loved doing so much including skiing. I first heard of DSUK in Stoke Mandeville and I agreed to give it a go. I attended my first lesson at Hemel Hempstead. They decided I should try a mono ski and after I’d prised my bum into the seat to my absolute surprise I really enjoyed it! It was so incredibly difficult and for the first time my body and brain were challenged.
I never thought I’d be able to do it but I’d had a great time and wanted to go back for more. After a few lessons I made a pact with myself that I was going to achieve ‘this’ and added to my bucket list that one day I would go on a skiing holiday with my husband and my twins and we would ski like we used to and enjoy our skiing holiday like we used to and we would all be the same – we would all be skiing together once more. I went on my first DSUK trip in 2019 to Andorra and once again had the best time ever but this time on a mono ski. It was fantastic to be skiing on real snow and by the end of the week I managed to get from the top of the run to the bottom without any assistance and without falling over! The whole trip was amazing, the lessons were well organised and the après ski was a laugh too. I left looking forward to improving my skills in Andorra 2020! I haven’t achieved my dream of skiing with my children yet but it WILL happen – one day – soon.