Oyuna Uranchimeg poses for a portrait during the Team USA Beijing 2022 Paralympic shoot on Sept. 12, 2021 in Irvine, Cali.
You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.
"That quote really resonates with me," wheelchair curler Oyuna Uranchimeg shared. "If I was able-bodied and I saw someone like me now, I probably would think I don't know how she does it. But then I experienced it myself, and I had no choice but to get through it."
Twenty-two years ago, Uranchimeg came from her home country of Mongolia to visit a friend in the United States and was in a serious car accident that left her paralyzed from the waist down.
It's something she doesn't regret.
"I have one hundred percent acceptance of the things that happened to me," the 48-year-old said. "I believe that we all have a destiny. You can't travel on two different paths at the same time. So whatever path you choose — or whatever path is given to you — you have to accept that and make the best of it."
Before her accident, Uranchimeg lived in Mongolia, working as an interpreter in a "very typical life."
While curious about what her life would have been like had she not been injured, she said she is grateful for everything it enabled her to do.
"If I weren't injured, I wouldn't have gotten to stay in this country and become a citizen of this beautiful place that I now call my country. And I wouldn't have become a Paralympian," she said.