Mr. Eric Ting was on a road trip in Australia when the car that he was driving hit another, flipped, and left him paralysed from the chest down. The year that followed was, of course, difficult for Eric, who was used to living an independent and active life, but he bounced back by obtaining both his bachelor degree and masters degree, and by winning medals for Singapore in the ASEAN Paralympic Games. Most significantly，Eric says he has been given opportunities to counsel people with a far greater impact than if he were able-bodied.
Moving on from a setback
“The severity of my disability didn’t kick in until a few months after my diagnosis, as I had initially taken it to be like an injury which I would recover from. In rehab, I had to learn how to do things in a very different way – everything took more time and effort.
When I returned to university, the limitations and obstacles in my daily life were very frustrating. As someone who could once do everything he wanted, it was tough putting my ego aside to ask for help. Things only got better after I learnt how to let go of some pride and get on with life.”
Eric’s indomitable fighting spirit
“My advice for people who have faced a big setback: Do you want to make life better for yourself and those people around you? Or worse? Then act accordingly. Look at the bigger picture. It is not just about yourself – you are a brother, a son, an uncle too. You have responsibilities to fulfil. Being a pessimist is the worst thing that you can be when you have had a bad run.”
Success is not defined by the house you own and how much you have in your bank account. It’s all about what you do and how people remember you after you are gone.”
2016 also marks a special year for Eric, who will be getting married to the love of his life come April. The paralympian opened up to us about his relationship with Ms. Sharon Tan, a feisty entrepreneur whom he had met on a dating site.
“I was drawn to Sharon’s profile by her physical appearance, and that we share the same faith. We met up and I had a good impression of her as I got to know more about her.
Sharon is caring, witty and straightforward. She is someone who makes quick decisions while I’m the more cautious and easygoing type, so we complement each other well. Since both of us are the rational sort, we are able to talk through most of our differences with ease.”
We wish Eric all the best in wedded bliss and his sporting career!