Business Chicks Breakfast
This talk was given at a Business Chicks event hosted on the Gold Coast. Turia’s story is one of courage and survival. Turia, a mining engineer, was 24-years-old when she entered a 100-kilometer ultra-marathon and was trapped by a bushfire in the remote Kimberly region, Western Australia.
The sound of a “rumble” getting louder and louder led to an event that changed her life forever. When she looked up, she was faced with a wall of flames and had to make a split-second decision whether to run up the hill or stay where she was. She chose the hill but Turia was unable to outrun the fire. After the fire, Turia was close to death and had to endure another four hours in the hot Kimberley sun which was scorching her already burned skin, before she was rescued.
Talia survived with severe burns to around 65 percent of her body and had to wear a compression stocking and mask for over two years. Talia was close to death but survived with severe burns to around 65 percent of her body. She said that nothing caused more pain than her bandage changes. She could hear the screams of other burns patients having their bandages changed as they came closer and closer to her room and then “she was screaming with the rest of them”.
It is what happened since that makes Turia truly special. After more than 200 operations, when she almost passed away several times, Turia had to learn to talk again and the most basic tasks of walking and feeding herself. Turia says she has good days and bad days. She had to overcome many adversities including the transformation of her appearance, the loss of her independence, and the ongoing challenges of her rehabilitation. There were some days when she felt that she “could not do this”.
Turia’s message was simple. She said there is no secret to overcoming adversity and that you simply have to be realistic and rise to the challenge. What she has learned on her journey, is that the strength of the human spirit is extraordinary. We are made up of so much more than just our bodies. As humans, we have enormous potential to fight back.
Turia says her one regret is that she did not appreciate the little things that she had. There is so much in life to be thankful for which we take for granted, simple everyday tasks like being able to bend your elbow to feed yourself. Her story truly serves as an inspiration to us all to appreciate the little moments in life. Turia who could not walk a single step is now training for the Melbourne Ironman which is truly extraordinary.
Turia says, that as humans, we all wear masks, with our work, with our friends, with our families, and we should not be afraid to let people see who we really are. We are valued not only for our looks but so much more.
Thank you, Turia for making us laugh and cry, for sharing your story of pain and hope and giving us the inspiration to get up and do something that we can be proud of.
You can find out more about Turia’s School of Champions at Unmask Your Potential.
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Disclaimer. The material in this post represents general information only and should not be taken to be legal advice.