A Man Whose Arms and Shoulders Were Amputated Can Wave Again
We’ve all had the experience of wanting to cry and smile simultaneously. These moments infiltrate our minds and leave marks on the rest of our lives. Felix Gretarsson had both his arms and shoulders amputated to save his life. Unfortunately, doctors said it was impossible to find a donor. But one phone call changed his life forever.
Here at Bright Side, we strongly believe that love and hope are powerful forces capable of overcoming any barriers. We’d love for you to read about how a man with no arms and shoulders went through ups and downs on his path to success, and see what his life looks like today.
It all started with rough times that taught Felix responsibility from a young age.
Felix, an Icelandic electrician, at the age of 25 years old, lost both arms in a high voltage accident in 1998. He told us about the challenges of losing one’s arms. He was married and a father to 2 little girls, 3 months and 4 years old. Suddenly, he transformed from a fit and capable young man to a separated and unproductive one. Felix explained to Bright Side, “I couldn’t even hold my little girls anymore. I could not feed myself or do any personal hygiene.”
His wife keeps on proving that he is unstoppable and nothing is impossible.
Felix was lucky to have supportive friends and family. When they saw him destroy himself, they were horrified. He needed a liver transplant, but his then-lifestyle made him ineligible for one. Around that time, he had a mental breakthrough and understood he wasn’t suffering from his injury but from his inability to accept the tragedy. That’s when everything changed.
After nearly a year of sobriety, he entered treatment in 2001. Sadly, it failed, and he had a second liver transplant later that year. Felix met Sylwia, his wife, at the hospital in 2015, and she has been a rock and a constant source of support for him since the beginning.
These arms and shoulders weighed just about as much as the 2 wings of a bird. Felix can wave now!
Felix told Bright Side, “The first impression was a bit weird, but the pain I felt was like I had 2 trucks parked on each shoulder, and that took over all my senses. After that, I adapted very quickly to the arms and saw them as my own. With time, they have adapted better and better. Now their color is the same as the rest of my body, and even the hair on them has adapted to me.”
With patience and hard work, his dream came true.
Felix informed us that his hands remain immovable, but his shoulders, elbows, and now his right wrist, are fully functional. Today, his life is devoted entirely to recovery.
Now and then, he learned that suffering is a choice, but he is always responsible for choosing the correct response in any circumstance. He believes that having patience always gives you what you deserve.
A home is built on strength, support, and dedication to one another.
He stated that he has been looking for a French arm and shoulder donor since 2013. His mother accompanied him on the long journey. He’s a strong man because a strong woman raised him.
A man’s robust growth comes through continuous effort and struggle.
His story is heartfelt because it shows that you can still succeed no matter how bad your problems are. Felix stated to us, “Never give up on your dreams; it can’t be done only means it hasn’t been done yet.” In addition, he teaches workshops on effective communication and emotional health.
After 23 years without hugs, he can now hold his daughters and grandchildren close in his arms.
Today, he has 2 strong daughters who have learned to live life on life’s terms. Embracing and hugging is something he can already do. Felix told Bright Side, “I finally have been able to hug my daughters and now also the grandchildren they have given me.” The father and the daughters have had the strongest bond through the years.
What do you think about Felix’s story? When was the last time you hugged a loved one? Know anyone who wants to hear a miracle story? Tag them in the comments.