My 15 minutes of fame

Just a couple days before I went to Ekso Bionics for the first time to walk in their exo-skeleton, they asked me if I would mind talking to “some friendly British guys doing a short documentary” about my initial experience. A few hours later, they called me again and asked if the British guys could come to my house and ask me a few questions before I actually walked at Ekso. I agreed to everything, assuming these guys were doing some esoteric, low-profile documentary project that no one would ever see.

The friendly Brits setting up at my house
The friendly Brits setting up at my house

The British guys showed up at my house (and indeed they were very friendly), they explained that this was actually for Al Jazeera English, a very well reputed international news channel with a growing influence and a viewership in the hundreds of millions worldwide. I was STOKED. I’d been reading and watching the shows on Al Jazeera for years and was always impressed by the quality and depth of their programs. Now I was going to be a part of it??

So let me say a couple disclaimers about this show before I sign off. Firstly, in full disclosure, the fact that this happened was simple good fortune. These guys didn’t seek me out personally, it just so happened that they were here that week and I happened to be one of the people who was walking for the first time on those days they were here. The fact that they decided to profile me and build the program around my story was a nice surprise.

Secondly, while I was filming with them and answering questions, I was repeatedly asked how excited I was about the future of Ekso and how it could apply to me. My response was honest and I want to reiterate it here. I think what Ekso is doing is fantastic and prolific. They have developed incredible technology that will revolutionize the treatment of people with Spinal Cord Injury. While I’m extremely grateful and excited about using Ekso as much as possible and reaping the benefits of their product, I also have no intention of using Ekso for a long time. My goal remains the same: to stand and walk and regain functionality in my lower body without any help. I see Ekso as a wonderful tool for rehab and recovery but I hope and plan on not using it for everyday life. It’s stubborn, but that’s just me…

Alright so here it is. Feel free to spread the word:

http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/thecure/2013/06/201362384057310764.html