They Replaced My Arms With Machines and Now I Feel Invincible! | @Tilly Lockey Part 2

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IF YOU HAVEN'T WATCH PART 1 CLICK HERE: https://youtu.be/SV_QCVW_yrQ

“Tell us if you could have ANY ARMS you want, what would your dream arms be?”
Finally a question that I was being asked that looked at what I wanted not what the world thought I needed and should have. From just this one
question I was excited. Open Bionics were about to change my life.

If you haven’t seen part one of my story you are probably wondering what happened to my hands when I was really young I fell ill with Meningococcal Septicaemia B. My hands were deteriorating fast and my parents were forced to make the hardest decision to amputate my hands.
One of the biggest challenges I faced after coming home from the hospital was learning how to adapt without hands, it was really difficult for my parents to watch me struggle. BUT they never gave up on encouraging to I would try and do things for myself like opening doors. I struggled a lot at first but when I realised that I could do it all by myself something inside me clicked and I knew I could become the independent person that I am today.

My mom was determined to get me new hands and threw herself into researching prosthetics. We decided to start with what we could get for free, it was quite an eye-opener for my mom and for me- my first prosthetic was given to us in a brown paper bag like it was something we should be discreet about. I remember sitting in the back of the car staring at the paper bag, thinking that if it was a ‘hand’, I wouldn’t use it all. I couldn't associate it as a hand and honestly, everything about it scared me.
One day, I couldn't take it anymore and sobbed to my mom asking: "Are these the only arms made for people like me?!"
At that moment my mom and I held each other and cried. I couldn't help but think how these prosthetics hands would not help those kids at all and that I needed to do something to change this. I was determined to find someone out there that could help.

After trying private clinics with no luck, we decided to we needed to find new options when my mom stumbled across an appeal that had been put out by a startup company called ‘Open Bionics’ - they were using the new technology 3D printing and was looking for a ‘below the elbow’ child amputee to help them with a project that they were involved in. Straight away my mom emailed them and explained my history and that we were desperate to help companies create a hand prosthetics for kids and that I would be an ideal candidate. Three weeks later we got an email back asking us to pop down to the clinic for a meeting.

D: “We are so glad you are here Tilly, why don’t you tell us exactly what you are looking for?”
Instantly I knew this company really cared about what I wanted as much as what I needed. I felt like I had control over the design.
I explained to Open Bionics that it was so important for the hands to help me with practical tasks. I would love to be able to brush my own hair. But not only that, they needed to make me feel cool and empowered wearing them. I wanted a hand that would embrace my differences and make me unique.
I remember telling everyone that one day I would love a whole wardrobe full of hands that I could mix and match up to my outfits as I thought they could be a cool fashion accessory. It could look so stylish!

I now travel the world in my own right not only as an Open Bionics ambassador but as Tilly. Sharing my story. This story! And trying to inspire others to do the same. I have met so many incredible people and been given so many wonderful opportunities. I never would I have thought I’d be able to stand on the blue carpet at the World Premiere of Alita Battle Angel alongside Rosa Salazar and being presented with the Alita’s Berserker Body bionic arms by James Cameron and Jon Landau. I am forever grateful for these opportunities and where they have gotten me today.

I want to keep working with different organisations to make the best hands possible and make them available for all amputees all around the world. I feel like my life has only just begun and that I have something to say. Embrace who you are. Everyone has differences and your differences are what makes you stand out. Love you and only be you. People are people and it is as simple as that! I am excited to carry on standing on the big stages, working with Open Bionics, sharing my story and hopefully take the stigma away from what people call a ‘Disability’ What people class as my disability is actually my ABILITY. So this is my story what’s yours?"

Sponsorship message and logo Alita Army


“Thank you to the Alita Army for sponsoring this video!”

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