A Love Story

Our love story began more than 20 years ago in Bromont in the Eastern Townships of Canada. We grew up together in this beautiful resort village. We studied at the same elementary and high schools. Every day we took the same bus to make the route from school to home. Our houses were only about five minutes from one another. And besides that, I was a good friend of Caro's brother Maxime, which allowed me to go to his parents several times a week to do sports activities.

Caroline was one year younger than me, but that did not stop her from falling in love with me in high school. And I was too stupid to realize it. Still, we were a very good pair of mixed doubles in badminton. We were both great athletes, and also part of the basketball and badminton teams at school.

After high school, I left the Eastern Townships to study in Montreal. Almost every weekend I was returning to Bromont to see my friends, including Caroline.

The Great Demand

One day in June, Caroline asked me, quite shyly, if I wanted to accompany her to her prom. Without hesitation, I said yes. I'll you spare you some details, but after that night we started seeing each other more regularly. We often went hiking and cycling in the mountains of Bromont.

When I returned in May, we started dating again on a regular basis. In June, the first symptoms of my illness appeared. I was paralyzed in November. Following my diagnosis, I had a lot of complications. The five years that followed were very difficult. I came close to death on several occasions and spent more than 700 days in hospitals. During all these years, Caroline was always there to support me. This period was very painful for both of us.

It was a time when I was constantly reflecting on my future. What would I do with this new life I had just inherited? While I was blurring black, I still had Caroline's sparkling eyes in front of me that reassured me. Despite everything that had happened to me and all these years of expectations, she was still madly in love with me.

Our Lives Entwined

On December 31, in Bromont as we celebrated the arrival of the new year with my friends, I kissed her and told her I want ed to make my life with her. From that moment on, we never gave up. On the contrary, our love has grown every year. We really have a very good relationship.

We moved to Montreal in 2008. Shortly after that, I discovered wheelchair tennis. In fact, it was Caroline who told me quite simply that I should inquire at the local club if wheelchair tennis existed. That's when I started my tennis career, and since then I have participated in two Paralympic Games and several other international competitions. I am the 10-time Canadian champion in the discipline of singles and doubles.

Philip playing wheelchair tennis

Caroline and I got married in Bromont last July with our friends and families. We celebrated our love before all who are dear to us. It was an absolutely amazing day that we will remember for all our lives.

I love you, Caro.

Philip and Caroline on their wedding

About the Author

Philip

Born in Bromont, Quebec in 1981, Philippe Bédard was active in sports from his childhood and made a name for himself in alpine skiing and golf, where he played competitively for 12 years. He dreamed of becoming a professional and focused his efforts in that direction.

On November 15, 2002 he was confronted with the biggest challenge of his life when he was diagnosed with lupus erythematosus, an autoimmune disease of the bone marrow. This inflammation in his spine marrow turned Philippe into a paraplegic. Because of numerous complications we was forced to spend 700 days in hospital during the first five years of his illness.

In 2009, he played wheelchair tennis for the first time. Arriving an hour before his course was to start, he watched a match between Séverine Tamborero, the coach of the Canadian National Wheelchair Team, and Yann Mathieu, the Canadian Wheelchair Tennis Champion, just back from the Paralympic Games in Beijing. Just off the tennis court, Philippe met Yann and that's when a light when on in his head: the light showed him what his dream was. A dream that would help him regain his health and the joy of being alive.

Philippe's ride is a Quickie Grand Slam (tennis wheelchair)

Most of the stories here on Live Quickie were submitted by readers. Do you have a story to tell? We'd love to hear it. Submit your story here.


Date: 2/28/2017 12:00:00 AM


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