Jesi has tried her hand at multiple adaptive sports, but found an outlet for her competitive drive alongside the abled-bodied, participating in the Tough Mudder series. In 2017, she received her “Holy Grail” which involves competing in the demanding, 24-hour World’s Toughest Mudder. Using a team of support runners, she has shown the world that when just a few people come together, anything is possible.
While the Tough Mudder series satiated her desire for adrenaline and excitement, Jesi found her niche on the ice - and was a member of the US Paralympic developmental curling team. As the last place she thought she would find her passion, this is was the sport to which she devoted the majority of her efforts. Jesi left the program in February 2020 to focus on finishing her associates degree, personal training certificate, and building her fitness business. When her need for adrenaline and excitement rises, Jesi competes on the Tough Mudder Course.
Competitive endeavors aside, Jesi’s most important role is as the co-founder of her non-profit, the Wheel With Me Foundation. Founded in 2016,The Wheel With Me Foundation is focused on a growing community of men and women who are wheelchair users. The organization's mission is to bridge the gap between inpatient rehabilitation and independent living through activism with the ultimate goal of constructing a transitional home to bridge the gap between inpatient rehabilitation and the real world. The residents of the Wheel With Me Campus will be accompanied by a caring staff member ready to coach them through their journey. Each resident will learn wheelchair skills, how to address and overcome daily obstacles, and care for themselves while fostering their own personal development. Upon graduation, the resident will be confident reintegrating into their home, community, and workplace. Ref: https://jesistracham.com/
My Biggest Hero is… By: Jesi Stracham
In an interview, Matthew McConaughey said his biggest hero is him ten years from now. This resonates with me. When I think of a hero in my life, I automatically think of the person I am and the person I am continuously developing into. To me, a hero is someone who shows courageous strength, even when the future is uncertain. A person who values the impact they leave on the individuals they serve. A hero is a person who, regardless of their fears or the doubt in their success, shows up anyway. An individual that continuously exhibits mental grit is a hero. Heroes are all around us. Had you asked me this question 6 years ago, I’m sure my answer would NOT be the same. After the accident that left me a paraplegic, my once determined future became unclear in an instant.
I struggled to change my lifestyle to accommodate my disability. I lost not only the use of my legs but my bowel and bladder control as well as the perceived “control” I had over my life. I had to relearn everything I previously knew about day to day functions. Various examples of everyday tasks I had to remaster were how to get my pants on, use a catheter to pee, how to poop, how to shower, get in and out of bed or a car, and how to use a wheelchair. Refusing to accept the reality of my life-changing injury, I overlooked my physical and mental health and wellness. (see complete Blog entry) (see Jesi's complete Blog entry)
A very special thanks to PHIL MUCCIO and JOSH SCHUELLER of AXIOBIONICS for their tremendous support for all people with physical disabilities, and their innovative approach to rehabilitation and pain management. Ms. Jesi Stracham is a staunch supporter of the advantages of Axiobionics innovations and the Integrative Pain Healers Alliance recognizes their approach to physical therapy support.