A woman who suffered a spinal cord injury at birth that saw her wheelchair bound is documenting her journey to becoming a mother after unexpectedly falling pregnant.
Alyssa Higgins, a 30-year-old disability advocate from New York, was unsure if she could ever have a child due to her injury and her only having one ovary.
So when Ms Higgins and her husband Jimmy recently found out they were going to be parents it came as a big surprise.
Ms Higgins, who is now four months pregnant, surprised her husband by holding up a sign revealing the news while the couple were taking a picture together.
“Surprise! You’re going to be a dad in 2021,” the sign read.
Mr Higgins told Good Morning Americathat he had no idea what to say.
“I just turned around and my jaw dropped,” he said.
Ms Higgins told the media outlet she wasn’t even sure if it was possible for her to have a baby.
“I didn’t even know if I could get pregnant with a spinal cord injury, but also because I have one ovary,” she said.
“The ovary thing made it get into my head more when I thought I couldn’t get pregnant. But it was always a possible thing.”
Ms Higgins suffered a spinal cord injury at birth when a doctor used forceps to deliver her.
The injury impacted the first two vertebrae at the top of her spine, the C1 and C2 vertebrae, which is a very critical region.
As a result of the injury, Ms Higgins was born not being able to move her body or breathe on her own. She was 18 months old before she started to gain movement in her fingertips.
The 30-year-old said her friends and family have always treated her the same as everyone else and encouraged her to live her best life.
She met her husband on a dating site at 2013 and when they first met up he wasn’t aware of her disability.
Ms Higgins said not being transparent from the beginning was the “biggest mistake I made” but the pair still immediately hit it off on their first date.
“Once he realised I was disabled he really didn’t ask many questions regarding my disability, just wanted to get to know me which was the first thing I liked about him,” Ms Higgins wrote in an Instagram post.
The couple got engaged in 2017 and married two years later.
Ms Higgins is now documenting her pregnancy journey on Instagram and is an outspoken advocated for people with disabilities.
She told Good Morning America she is excited to see what the future holds.
“I don’t have any fears in general. I’ve been through so much that it’s like, ‘let’s bring it.’ There was no fear, I was excited,” she said.