Ten years ago, a traffic accident took away Nguyen Chanh Tin’s control over the lower half of his body; however, the condition did not stop him from living his life and finding his beloved.
Tin still recalls vividly the day that the road accident took place -- one that rendered his legs immobile when he was only 23 years old.
After going through uphill battles during treatment against the condition, Tin decided to leave the big city behind for a new life in his hometown of Binh Dinh Province in south-central Vietnam.
With no control over his legs, Tin had to turn to his mother for even the most trivial needs.
Afraid of becoming a family burden, Tin thought of every way possible to make money while being bed-ridden.
He then found a demand for mobile phones and accompanying gadgets in his hometown, as well as product supplies from a wholesaler in Ho Chi Minh City, which motivated him to open a local mobile phone repair shop.
He did not expect that the venture would lead him to Nguyen Thuy Truc, a customer from Ho Chi Minh City who would later become his girlfriend.
He referred to his love story as a ‘VND360,000 [US$16]’ one, as an inquiry about the pricing of a product sparked their first banter.
As the conversation went further, they bonded over similar stories of lost loves.
“I don’t even know exactly when we did fall in love with each other,” Tin said.
It took him a few more conversations to finally confess his love for Truc, which was immediately reciprocated.
As a couple, they spent the first two years together being 600 kilometers away from each other, which proved a challenging test of commitment for both sides.
They also had to hear malicious comments that wished their love affair ill only because of Tin’s condition.
Nevertheless, the challenges only served to consolidate their relationship further.
“I feel grounded and at peace whenever I’m with Tin,” Truc said.
“Even when he’s bed-ridden, Tin remains upbeat and optimistic.
"He enlightened me on many things, including love and perseverance.”
Early on, the couple decided to take the next step and move in together.
In their new house in District 7 of Ho Chi Minh City, Tin felt the urge to start penning his autobiography, entitled ‘Toi chon song’ (I Choose Life), which was published earlier this year.
In his new journey as a life coach, he hopes that his words will be able to inspire young people facing disadvantaged circumstances to seize the narrative to their own life.
He is also committed to philanthropist work, vowing to donate half of the profits from his book to charitable activities.
|Nguyen Chanh Tin talks in an online coaching session with a Vietnamese youth from his home in District 7, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre|
|Nguyen Thuy Truc massages Tin’s hand after he spent hours in bed at their home in District 7, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre|
|Nguyen Thuy Truc guides Nguyen Chanh Tin’s wheelchair in their home in District 7, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre|
|Nguyen Chanh Tin pushes his wheelchair in his home in District 7, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre|
|Nguyen Thuy Truc reads Nguyen Chanh Tin’s book ‘Toi chon song’ (I Choose Life) in their home in District 7, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre|