Courage To Discover A New Sense Of Purpose

“I always had faith that there would be that bigger purpose, but I didn’t know what it was for so long” - Tayla

When Tayla left high school, she knew exactly what path she wanted to take. She loved nursing and everything about it – it was her dream career. However, her body had other ideas. Tayla started to develop muscle problems, “I’d be on placement and I’d get shaky and weak a lot. It got to the point where I’d need Mum to drive me to and from my nursing placements. We weren’t sure what was going on,” Tayla reflects. 

It was her university lecturer who came to her and suggested they take a step back and get her health under control before she continued further with placements. From there, Tayla felt her life spiral downwards. She struggled with her health problems and veering off her nursing path, she felt like she’d lost her identity. Tayla comments, “I didn’t have that career anymore. I didn’t have that passion to go to.” Thus, her 7 year journey began, as she worked with her health practitioners to find a diagnosis.

Tayla finally obtained a diagnosis a couple of years ago. She has a genetic muscle condition that is slowly progressing over time. Starting from a few muscle problems here and there, to now spending most of her time in a wheelchair. Everyday she experiences a full body paralysis where her muscles become too weak and she becomes locked in her body for a period of time.

The daily struggles that Tayla faces have led her to become more mindful of her body, her surroundings, and finding the courage to be OK with herself. “When I’m in paraslysis, all I have is myself. I can’t distract myself with anything else,” Tayla shares. Having a strong support team around her has been important to help her stay positive. “I’d have those moments when I thought I couldn’t do it anymore or I couldn’t see the light,” she says. Her mum has been her biggest inspiration, “she has been my biggest teacher. She is so resilient. She has been there all the whole way along. She’s so selfless and devoted, I really admire her.”

Since her condition was diagnosed, Tayla feels that she has now turned a corner and is working to share her experience and do something bigger for the world. Throughout her journey, she comments that “I always had faith that there would be that bigger purpose, but I didn’t know what it was for so long.” However, it became natural that Tayla would share what she has learned, “I’ve done this through writing, through talking to people, and telling my story. I’ve found that I’ve been able to connect with people and empathise with whatever journey they’re on. I’ve always wanted to help people and I think I’m doing that in a different way now.”

Team BOD: How do you measure success?

Tayla: Individually and flexibly! With the goal to navigate life consciously, courageously and compassionately. Each day treasuring moments of joy and leaving a positive impact along the way.

Team BOD: If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

Tayla: Resilience. To be able to bounce back from any challenge.

Team BOD: What is your favourite thing to do when wearing BOD?

Tayla: After attending a session with my osteopath, feeling rejuvenated and relaxed, heading to a café with a friend or home to snuggle with my cavalier pups in front of a favourite tv series.

About Tayla

Tayla lives in Melbourne and is a Champion of Lived Experiences, represented by Champion Health Agency. For more information, or to contact Tayla, please visit her Champion profile here.

"Each day treasuring moments of joy and leaving a positive impact along the way!”