Ryan Gebauer Gets his Life in Order after His Accident

After his fall, Ryan realized he needed to start focusing on his future.

After his fall, Ryan realized he needed to start focusing on his future.

Editor’s Note: Ryan Gebauer just had finished his sophomore year in high school before the accident. He entered Delray Beach, Florida’s Pinecrest Rehabilitation and Outpatient Hospital in September and realized he would miss his junior year of high school. Part 3 of a 5 part series. 

“Before the accident, I never had even considered going to college or growing up to be anything,” Ryan says. “I lived day to day, with no ambition to do or become anything. I turned 17 when I was at Pinecrest and I decided I couldn’t sit at home and watch television. I had led an active life until this point. I went back home after 6 months of hospitals and rehabilitation, and my parents decided that I should be home schooled. I wasn’t a fan of home schooling but I knew that I needed to do it. I finally began to realize that I had goofed around too much in high school, and the time had arrived for me to take life seriously. I began to focus on what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. I realized I needed to go to college even though I didn’t know what I wanted to do.

“I was home schooled from January through the summer. When school started in August, I went back to my old high school. School was difficult for me when I went back. Before, I had always been known as the jokester and the prankster, but when I returned, I was in a wheelchair and the looks and the feelings I got were different. Not everyone acted differently though. The people I’d never been friends with before started being friendly with me. Many of them were in my classes and offered to help me take notes.”

Ryan went through a weird transition of friendships. This new group of students befriended him and he found himself with a completely different set of friends than he’d previously had. He found his new friends had much deeper friendships with him than many of his tree jumping buddies did. Even today, many of those new friends still stay in touch with him. “I didn’t get to graduate with the class of 1997, because I didn’t finish my course work in time. I finished up in January but had to wait until May for graduation. So, in the meantime, I became a mentor for the Center for Independent Living, and mentored newly injured patients.”

When Ryan returned to school, he realized his friends weren't true friends, and found a new group of friends who have been supportive since.

When Ryan returned to school, he realized his friends weren’t true friends, and found a new group of friends who have been supportive since.

To learn more about Ryan Gebauer and ways he’s working for the community, go to www.rollingryan.com.

Next: Rather Than Accept the Inevitable, Ryan Gebauer Chooses to Try and Change the World around Him

About the Author: For the last 12 years, John E. Phillips of Vestavia, Alabama, has been a professional blogger for major companies, corporations and tourism associations throughout the nation. During his 24 years as Outdoor Editor for “The Birmingham Post-Herald” newspaper, he published more than 7,000 newspaper columns and sold more than 100,000 of his photos to newspapers, magazines and internet sites. He also hosted a radio show that was syndicated at 27 radio stations; created, wrote and sold a syndicated newspaper column that ran in 38 newspapers for more than a decade; and wrote and sold more than 30 books. Learn more at http://www.nighthawkpublications.com

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