Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Barton and Megan: A Match made in Wheelchair Heaven.

If you have ever read a good fairytale, there is always an object that brings the boy and girl together. We've all seen it and experienced that audible "awwwwwww" moment, with copious amounts of tears.  Remember Cinderella?  She lost her slipper at a ball and the handsome prince that found it looked far and wide to find the owner of that delicate glass slipper.  That slipper was the start of their hearts becoming one.  For Megan and Barton Cutter, it was a small turquoise stone with Megan's e-mail address on it!  Talk about a modern twist!
                                                                                                                                Their fairytale began when they met each other at a Martial Arts seminar in Tucson Arizona.  Little did they know, that was just the beginning.  They both used their interest in martial arts to help come to terms with certain periods in their lives.  For Megan, martial arts was used to mend a broken heart from a failed engagement and the unimaginable loss of her mom.  As she found her confidence once more, she was able to embark on a career in writing.  For Barton, martial arts was used to persevere in reaching for what he wanted, despite having a disability.  This outlook is not new for Barton.  He's not afraid to try new things.  In their book, Ink in the Wheels: Stories that make Love Roll,  Barton talks about the first time he was intrigued by a power wheelchair and the freedom it gave him.  I had to laugh when I read this part in the book.  I've been in a manual wheelchair for quite a number of years myself, and I love power chairs!  What I marvel at more though, is the seamless coordination that people with power chairs have when driving them.  I NEED to take lessons, Barton! :)  What I found absolutely fascinating about these two is that they both had unique perspectives.  Barton, was who he was.  He had worked on exploring and pushing himself.  He understood his limitations but never let himself be confined by them.  He uses a wheelchair and may need assistance in doing some everyday things, but he is very capable of living life to the full...and he does just that!  Megan saw beyond the challenges that presented themselves and saw Barton for who he was, a man that was willing to be a husband and take that responsibility seriously.

There were things that Megan told me she had to get used to as she and Barton started their life together.  One was the realization that Barton needed things that were independent of her.  For example, his having a personal assistant come in to care for him...or he would want things done a certain way, differently than how she would normally do it herself.  The most beautiful thing though, is that she wanted to do what ever worked best for him because she loved him so deeply.  They are in it together, no matter what.

The love story of these two is getting around and inspiring others.  Their story is a platform for others to have hope of finding and cultivating their own love story.  Giving back and empowering people. Together.  Making love roll on.  Megan and Barton - Here is to many more miles and many more years of strengthening your remarkable bond of love that unites you!  The power of people's stories is what helps people have hope. Your story is one remarkable story of hope.  And to think... the fairytale began as Barton pulled from his pocket, the small turquoise stone with a special e-mail address on it...  that stone came from an amazing woman and was the start of two hearts becoming one.

Michelle Fischer is the host of  A View from My Window, a podcast produced by The Arc of Indiana

Learn more about Megan and Barton Cutter here: www.arcind.org/upload/media/A%20View%20into%20Ink%20in%20the%20Wheels.mp3