When Canada’s Mike Shaw had a ski accident in 2013, his life changed in an instant. Yet, not 17 months after his diagnosis of incomplete quadriplegia, Mike was participating in the Wings for Life World Run! Now he’s written a book about his journey from the accident until today, called “Never Part of the Plan: A Story of Courage, Resilience and Gratitude.” We were overwhelmed to learn that a portion of proceeds will go to Wings for Life for spinal cord injury research!
The book is a page-turner. Mike, who is a Wings for Life World Run ambassador, confides, “Writing this, I went to places in my memories that I hadn’t shared with almost anybody.”
Mike still deals with certain effects of quadriplegia, but he feels lucky because his remarkable recovery is exceptionally rare. He started writing the book in January 2020 as “the ultimate way to pay it forward.”
“It feels incredibly vulnerable to put it out there, but I hope it’ll help people who have had a spinal cord injury, and it’s got a huge message for anyone who is facing uncertain times,” says the author. Interwoven with his story are powerful insights on how to find gratitude and resilience in life’s most difficult moments.
Mike originally gravitated toward Wings for Life because of its large scale – funding spinal cord injury research projects around the world, including two that he was involved with. He also loves the community feeling of the Run and its format, which allows him to set his own goals and assess his progress. He comments, “It’s massive for me on a personal level and has also connected me with people around the world.”
Mike and the team he founded in 2017, #TeamCoast2Coast, have postponed their plans until the 2021 edition of the Run. But he’ll still be participating on May 3.
“On race day, I will be getting my running shoes on and going for an individual App Run at 4:00am Pacific Time,” he says. “I’m really excited to participate with people around the world, on my own, and do my part.”
“Never Part of the Plan” is on sale now at your local Amazon Marketplace. You can read about Mike’s journey and support the great cause of finding a cure for spinal cord injury at the same time!