Wednesday, December 8

Inspiring speech by Teresa Perales at the Princess of Asturias Awards

  • The Aragonese swimmer, winner of 27 Paralympic medals, urges all of society not to give up in the face of difficulties and “at least try”

  • “Who was going to tell me in 1995, when I heard the words ‘you are not going to walk again’, that the path that I was going to travel with my chair was going to take me here!”

The swimmer Teresa Perales, winner of Princess of Asturias Award for Sports 2021, he focused his speech during the handover ceremony in the figure of his mother, Sebi, whom he referred to a dozen times to thank her for that “I’m here to help you.”

“Who was going to tell me in 1995 when I heard the words ‘you are not going to walk again’ that the path that I was going to travel with my chair was going to take me here!” Campoamor theater in Oviedo, before collecting the award from the hands of Princess Eleanor.

The Aragonese swimmer, possessor of 27 Paralympic medalsShe recalled the figure of a neighbor from her childhood who, after assuming her “fears and shame” because of what was happening to her “and going out into the street”, stopped her and her mother to refer to her, already in a wheelchair , with a “poor girl” who made her stop being “the girl of the third to be the poor little daughter of Sebi”. For that neighbor, Perales’s life “had ended before it began,” said the swimmer, in whose opinion, on the contrary, “life simply continued on a path other than planned.”

His mother, in a box

Thus, he revealed how his mother, who was following his speech excited from one of the Campoamor boxes, has always been by his “side”, when Perales wanted to bathe in the pool, be a deputy, write a book or go to the Saharawi desert to take cans of sardines in a 4×4.

The swimmer celebrated what society has changed “for the better” in the case of disability, so that the gaze of the neighbor “is probably no longer the same, or rather, it is not the gaze of so many neighbors.” He pointed out that there are more accessible portals, fewer shops with stairs at the door, even a dependency law, although it is necessary to “continue improving.”

“Dream it and go for it”

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Perales took advantage of the speaker at the Princess of Asturias Awards ceremony to say “to children and not so young that we must not wait for someone to tell us what is going to happen or what we should do. You have to think about it or dream about it. Decide what you want and go for it. With decision “.

In the Aragonese’s opinion, you shouldn’t let obstacles prevent you from “at least trying”, and she suggested surrounding herself on the way with people, friends and people who, like her mother, are willing to help. “A) Yes, Although the destination is different from the one imagined, the trip will have been worth it“, he concluded.

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