Looking for Love? new to dating with a disability? Well, You’ve come to the right place! Peer Mentor and SCI survivor, Jose Alzati, shares his tips for dating and relationships!
Jose Alzati and his wife, Nadia, reside in Chicago, and are the proud parents of two dogs. Jose runs a medical supply company and volunteers his time as a peer mentor at Marianjoy and the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab. Nadia serves children as a teacher. Jose shares their story of unconditional love with the CURE NATION below.
Jose alzati survives A Test of True Love
Jose Alzati was only 20 years old when he met the woman who would become his partner for life. They got to know each other after meeting in church and began dating a few months later.
Things seemed to be going great with their young love, but neither of them knew that the unexpected was about to happen. Just seven months after they met, and just days before his 21st birthday, Jose was in a car accident that resulted in a cervical spinal cord injury.
For two months after the accident, Jose was unconscious. When he woke up, he was told about his injury, and he also learned that his girlfriend, Nadia, had barely left his side. They had not been together long enough to have any sort of commitment. She had stayed because she cared.
Jose recalls that it took months of rehab immediately following his accident, followed by a couple years of therapy to regain much of his independence. All the while, he and Nadia stayed together. Eventually, he was able to start driving again, which enabled him to finish his GED.
When Nadia finished school and Jose was able to start working, the two decided it was time to take the next step in their relationship. In 2002, about five years after they started dating, Jose and Nadia were married.
“She has been with me ever since, through ups and downs. She has helped make a better life,” Jose shares.
Jose’s Tips for Dating & Relationships after sci
As a peer mentor, Jose enjoys lots of opportunities to share his experiences and advice with people who are new to the rolling life. He gets it that it can be challenging trying to navigate new and existing relationships after a traumatic injury.
“When I meet a new patient, I talk with them about relationships and how important it is to feel comfortable. We talk about still feeling handsome or beautiful in a wheelchair. You have to feel good about yourself to attract someone. We talk about intimacy, the possibility of having children – all of it. Driving is also a key to being independent – and dating,” he says.
When it comes to dating, Jose says it’s a good idea to pick a spot that you know is accessible.
That way, you can be as independent as possible, which will make for more confidence, less hassle and a better date.Jose believes there is someone out there for all of us, but we can’t predict when and how they’ll come into our lives. “When I met my wife,” he says, “I was walking, you know. But, when one of my friends got an SCI, he got divorced. Then, a few years later, he found someone else, they married and are still happy. To find that special someone, we have to get out there. You have to be willing to be yourself and be honest.”
Marriage also takes work and commitment, but Jose believes it’s worth every bit of it. No relationship is perfect, and communication is key.
“After 16 years, we’ve had a regular marriage. Sometimes we’re happy, sometimes we’re crying – but we’re always linked, and pulling each other forward. We make sure and do things that we enjoy together.”
Jose used to play wheelchair softball and basketball, and his wife would come out to support him, but those weren’t really her sports of choice to watch.
Later, he got into cycling, which is more Nadia’s speed and they are now able to enjoy the activity together. They also enjoy other outdoor activities, including camping and kayaking.So, what’s the moral of Jose and Nadia’s story? Maybe it’s just a little reminder that there’s love out there for all of us, if we’re open to it.
Jose Shares the Love for Cure Catheters
As a DME professional, Jose is familiar with all sorts of medical supplies, and especially intermittent catheters because he uses them too.
He says what he likes best about Cure Catheters, is that “customers can see right on the box that the products are not made with unwanted chemicals, like DEHP, BPA or Latex. It’s important for people to know they have choices!”
To request free samples of the Cure Ultra® Catheter or any Cure Medical catheter, contact your local distributor of quality healthcare products, or click here.
Learn more about Proposition 65 chemicals like DEHP and your health here. Cure Catheters are not made with scary chemicals.
Jose also appreciates the Cure Commitment and the fact that Cure donates 10% of all net income to medical research programs in pursuit of a cure for paralysis! Learn more about Cure Medical-funded research programs here.
Rolling Ahead with a disability or traumatic injury takes many forms, but doing so helps people become more than they’ve thought they can be.
Giving people resources and encouragement to roll ahead is one of the core missions of Cure Medical, in addition to the medical products we create to improve people’s quality of life.
While Cure Medical intermittent catheters are designed to address a physical, medical need, the rest of the information we provide through the Cure Nation is intended to support people from an emotional and mental standpoint, to help you get from Point A to Point B in your personal journey – regardless of your medical condition or disability.
Rolling Ahead: Stories of Success with Disabilities is a powerful book written by John E. Phillips that shares the personal experiences of 14 people who have all overcome physical challenges and medical conditions of their own, as well as perspectives of people who support others in this journey.
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