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The Limitless Pioneer

ViraliSpinal Cord Injury

On a typical day in the life of Virali Modi, living alone and navigating the world independently with grace, Virali challenges stereotypes about wheelchair users. The world’s first wheelchair-using model, she shares her journey from the moment of diagnosis to becoming an accidental influencer. Virali is also a motivational speaker and a Disability Rights Activist. Through her campaigns, she advocates for greater accessibility and encourages everyone to raise their voices. The video takes a candid turn as Virali addresses misconceptions about relationships and intimacy for people with disabilities. Join Virali Modi on her journey of breaking barriers, advocating for inclusivity, and proving that living with a disability is just one facet of a vibrant, multifaceted life.

Transcript

People have a lot of different perceptions about those with spinal cord injuries

For instance, we are good for nothing

Ahh, we are dependent, we always need someone

We cannot do anything independently

I mean, those are just, that’s just the tip of the iceberg

But in all honesty, looking at me,

I have a spinal cord injury

I travel the world independently

I don’t have a caretaker

I live alone, I do everything by myself

Hi, my name is Virali Modi

I am a motivational speaker, India’s first wheelchair using model, 

a disabilities rights activist and an influencer, and I have a spinal cord injury

You know life can change with the snap of the fingers

In the case of spinal cord injuries, your life can totally be altered

And it can affect anyone

Whether you have a medical condition, whether it is an accident or whether it’s a sports injury

I was 15 years old when I was diagnosed with a spinal cord injury

When it comes to challenges, I think the biggest challenge that anyone who has a spinal cord injury or uses an assistive mobility device faces is accessibility

For instance, if there aren’t any ramps to enter a building

If there isn’t a lift to access a building or even if there is,

there is a bump, a speed breaker, a threshold, a something that just blocks your path, right

And, and that takes away so much of your independence

2017 is when I started my campaign for accessible railways, which we made nine railway stations totally wheelchair accessible without any renovation

At that point of time, that is when I understood that there are a lot of people with disabilities but not a lot of people raise their voice

Either yeh darr hai ki log kya kahenge, hum kaise, hum yeh kaise karenge

Ya fir humari kaun sunega, humari kaun sunega

So, from that point on I would say, I became an accidental influencer

Right now, I am an influencer on Instagram and that is through raising awareness about disability

But then at the same time showcasing that people with disabilities are no different than any other individual

We have the same like, dislikes, for instance, I love fashion so I do a lot of reels around fashion

I love makeup, so I do a lot of reels about that

I do a lot of relatable reels for which people can understand that

Yaar humari aur unki zindagi toh zyada different toh nahi hai

I talk about my journey, I just show lifestyle things

For instance, agar mai chai bana rahi hu, toh I will record that  and I will just share that

Taki sabko yeh bhi samaj aaye ki, haa yaar yeh bhi bandi akeli rehti hai, yeh bhi karti hai, 

Mai bhi toh karta hu yam mai bhi toh karti hu

So, what’s so different about us?

I remember this one instance when I wasn’t engaged, by the way, let’s point that out

I had met a guy on a dating website and he asked me, can you have sex since you are on a wheelchair? 

The one thing that immediately popped into my mind was, aap kya khade khade karte ho?

Aap bhi na, palang pe lait ke he karte ho na?

It’s the same thing, so I think we need to get rid of this perception, that people with disabilities cannot have sex

When it comes to your sex life, when you talk about having a sex life, you try different positions that work for you

You try different things, you, you experiment, right? 

And then it’s the same thing

We may need a little bit more of adaptations or you know, we may need a pillow or two 

But it works out

So, I think getting rid of this stigma is so important that people with disabilities cannot have sex 

Haan, hum kar sakte hai aur hum enjoy bhi karte hai

 

See you, Bye

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