Hi I’m Stephen Sumner,
I lived in Vancouver Canada all my adult life. A logger, a fisherman, a photo model, a fisherman again and a hobo-drifter all my life. First I ski raced (which I was never terribly good at) then I raced bikes – road bicycles – (at which I was maybe fair-to-middlin’, but for which, in any case, I developed a life-long passion). Bikes took me all over the world – and to the Tuscany, for obvious reasons, over and over and over again. One night 7 or 8 years ago while I was there, I was riding a motorbike home from pizza with friends in Siena and was hit and run over and left for dead in a farmer’s field.
I lost my left leg above the knee, but got lucky in every sense – and still am.
I did, however, suffer from frequent and unspeakably devastating bouts of Phantom Limb Pain. It was enough to make me just want to sign off. Over the years I learned about Mirror Therapy, a cure which is so simple, so effective and so cheap that it should be illegal.
I now am so grateful I feel it’s my duty and it will be my great and priceless pleasure to bring this perfect little secret to poor and bombed-out people who have little hope of discovering it otherwise.
Hence the creation this little effort and this little blog.
Now that the majeure parte of my Phantom Pain is a thing of my past, I’m able to breathe and see clearly. In many ways these years since my accident have been richer and more active than the ones before. I’ve lived in Vancouver, Afghanistan, Southern California, Berlin, Baja, Saudi Arabia and am now en route to South East Asia. I also had the ultra-rare experience of being involved in the making of a movie based on my own life. It was a Warner Bros Germany film (thus in the German language) and is called Phantomschmerz or ‘Phantom Pain’.
Here’s an English subtitled clip, it’s well-shot, but they make me look too sulky and issue-ridden : Phantomschmerz (English Subtitles)
Anyhow, point is, I’m hoping that my having been so many places and done so much since my accident will inspire energy and motivation in at least a few of the amputees that I meet on this ‘mission’.