JACKSONVILLE, Ill. (WCIA) — One man is trying to give people hope through his hobbies. He’s helping people with disabilities “adapt to the outdoors.”
Spend just a few minutes with Nathan Lamberson at Nichols Park and you’ll quickly learn, this is his happy place.
“Growing up, my grandfather and several other family members got me into fishing.”
But, he says, it hasn’t always been this easy.
“I had a lot of health issues, so I just really didn’t get out much.”
It’s because he was born with spina bifida; a condition which prevented his spinal cord from developing properly. Now, he has to do dialysis five days a week for four hours each day.
“After dialysis, even if I’m feeling kind of bleh, I’m always in a better mindset if I’m going fishing.”
So now, he’s taken to social media to teach other people with disabilities they can do it too.
“You’re watching the YouTube channel where I show you, the viewer, that yes, I may be in a wheelchair, but I don’t let that stop me from doing what I enjoy.”
The channel is called Adapting the Outdoors and he isn’t only fishing in them. He also shoots pistols and shotguns, reviews products and even gives some tips and tricks.
“Especially if they’re disabled, like I am, and you don’t really want to use the stove, just to use the coffee pot.”
He says he got the idea because he knows how hard it can be. He wants to help people catch themselves in negative thoughts and turn things around.
“A lot of people have that mindset of, ‘I’m in a chair,’ or, ‘I’m disabled, I can’t do everything like everybody else can.’ I want to be that person to show people that, if you have the right mindset, you can and you can do whatever you want.”
Even though it may be tough to get there, he says he’s here for you and it will come with time.
“Don’t do everything at once. Go a little bit and then try different things. Small steps at a time and eventually you will succeed.” Because, at the end of the day, “You never know until you try.”
You can subscribe to Adapting to the Outdoors on at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPfWMQi6F_gj3JgkUg3TMiA.
You can also like his Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/AdaptingTheOutdoors/