Right Footed (2015) Movie Script

[Horn honks]
[Honk honk]
Oh, wow. Ha ha!
[Cheering and applause]
My very first teachers
in life were my parents.
They were my inspiration
growing up,
but they made a very important
decision when I was born,
and they decided that
they would raise me
like they would raise
my brother and my sister.
They weren't going to
treat me any different.
They weren't going
to hide me away,
and they taught me to be
confident about who I am,
to embrace my difference
and embrace my disability.
Thank you.
I challenge you to think about
something you've
always wanted to do,
but even more importantly,
what is it
that's stopping you?
[Engine starts]
Actually, I remember
it was right about here
that the fourth-grade class
was all lined up
and we were walking along here,
and then a fifth-grader
was behind me.
He had a big tee shirt on.
He had his arms in his shirt,
and he came up to me,
and he was all like,
"Look, Jessica.
Look, Jessica.
I'm just like you.
I'm handicap."
It was like a moment
when he was saying
that I was handicap
and that I wasn't--
that I couldn't do anything
or that I wasn't enough.
When I was born, my mom
was just devastated.
You envision your child
to be perfect--
you know, 10 fingers, 10 toes.
She didn't know, what kind
of life would I lead?
Mother: Oh, I was depressed.
I don't want visitors.
I closed the curtain,
and I said,
"No. Let me be by myself
to think over
what did I do wrong."
The feeling guilty was
just all over, you know?
-The initial shock of it,
naturally, was quite traumatic,
but someone came up
at the hospital
a day or two after she was born
and said, "You know, God must
really have thought you two,
"you and your wife,
are strong parents
because He allowed y'all
to have a child like this,"
and that kind of touched
my heart a little bit.
I got thinking, well,
maybe that's the way
I should look at it anyway.
Jessica: Everyone had
something I didn't have,
and I was different,
and I knew that people
reacted to me different,
but the only way that
I could express that
was through anger
and frustration.
I threw fits.
My sister will tell you,
my brother will tell you
I was horribly selfish.
-I was kind of
expected to help her
and do different things
that I don't think
a typical younger
sister would do.
It was hard on all of us.
-My mom poured her soul
into Jessica,
into raising Jessica...
you know, at cost--
to herself, to her
other children.
Jessica: My mom was
resigned to the fact
that she was going
to take care of me
for the rest of my life.
and she made that commitment
the day of my birth.
My mom is a
super-independent woman.
She's so strong.
She came to this country
from the Philippines,
and she started
a life for herself
and became a very
successful nurse.
Well, I don't even know
if she realizes if,
but I'm very much like her,
and as much as she tried
to take care of me,
I struck out against that.
I remember seeing the slide
from right over here.
I was prevented from
climbing up it many times,
and it just infuriated me.
It made me upset and angry
that they were holding me back.
Everyone else could
be on the slide,
but I could only
sit on the swings.
In my frustration, I'd just
sit here and envision
that I could fly over
this entire playground
and I was Superwoman.
I'd take up one of
my friends at a time
and fly them around,
but I was the only one
with a super power,
so I was the hero.
Woman on film:
Sometimes she gets it,
and sometimes she doesn't.
Jessica: I got my
first prosthetic arm
when I was 3 years old.
[Indistinct voice on film]
People called me things like
"Hook" or "Robot Girl."
I didn't know why God
created me this way.
Inez: She has no friends,
and kids, they talk
about her--behind.
6 years old, I put
her in the dance.
I want to expose her
with the other children.
Jessica: I remember
my teacher announcing
that we were going to be onstage
in front of all our
family and friends,
and I remember how
terrified I was.
[Music playing]
And then came the first
round of applause.
I danced for 14 years.
My mom went to the
taekwondo teacher
and explained the situation--
that her daughter
didn't have arms--
and he said,
"Well, that's fine,
as long as she has
a good attitude."
I went through the ranks,
and at the age of 14,
received my first-degree
black belt.
First day of eighth grade,
I was faced with this question--
do I wear the fake
arms to school?
And I go like this,
and that one...
And of course, I'd have
to come over here
and fasten this in place,
which I'm not going
to do right now
because I don't even know
if they fit me anymore.
I understand where
people were concerned,
and I'm going to
take them off now
because they just
are so uncomfortable.
That was like a
jail cell or something.
It was very tough
to have to deal with
creating an identity as a child
when I had to wear something
that was keeping me from
being who I was, who I am,
and I walked to the
bus stop without them,
and I promised myself I would
never wear these again.
[Bell rings]
I think people on
the outside saw that
I was a perfectly fine,
competent student,
but internally, I was going
through this challenge
or this struggle
of acceptance.
I was so self-conscious about
what people thought about me,
and just the thought
of being different
and eating with my feet,
so I'd refrain from eating.
Jason: She didn't date
or anything like that.
Yeah, I would hear
about her crushes,
but she was probably was
just a little bit too
insecure with herself.
Jessica: I remember
seeing a TV piece
about a woman.
Her name was Barbara Guerra,
and she was a young mom.
She goes over, and she picks
this little baby up.
She was changing
the baby's diaper.
And I went over to her
house, and after that,
I was a different person.
It was almost like
an awakening
that I had never experienced.
It's really incredible how one
person can be that difference.
When was the last time
you said, "I can't"?
How many of you said
"I can't" today?
And guess what are the two words
that I've eliminated
from my vocabulary.
Girl: I can't.
Jessica: I can't.
Now, are there any questions?
Girl: How do you write?
Jessica: I write with my toes,
and by the way,
I'm right footed.
[Several people
talking at once]
OK. So, give me low 5.
We kind of relate because
we both kind of
have a hard life,
because I can't hear.
I just want to grow up
to be normal.
I don't want to be that person
that they know that I'm deaf
and make fun of me.
Jessica: When I was
in seventh grade,
I hated being different.
I really hated it.
I wanted to just blend in.
I just wanted to slide
under the radar, you know,
just not be...
stared at or noticed or
like, "Oh, look at her,"
or, you know, whispered about
or, like, you know,
people saying things.
-I felt like I wasn't
the only one.
Jessica: You aren't, for sure.
I know what it's
like to be angry,
because I was angry as a child.
There are times when I might
still have that anger within me
and can pull that out,
but it's funny because
I think that same anger
is what gave me some of
the drive that I needed.
When I graduated the
University of Arizona,
there was an article done,
and I said I wanted to be
a motivational speaker,
and that's what drew
a lot of people.
They hired me for a few
speeches that summer,
and that started it out.
Hello. I'm Jessica Cox.
I graduated from the
University of Arizona
just about 3 weeks ago.
Somehow, it was therapeutic
to be able to stand up
in front of 100 people
and say, "You know what?
I was born without arms,"
because I'd spent all
the years prior to that
trying to hide the fact
that I didn't have arms.
That was empowering--
to be confident about who I am,
as opposed to hide
who I am.
My biggest obstacle
is social acceptance.
People don't believe
that I can do
everything and anything
with my feet.
It's hard for me to convince
people that I can do that.
Thank you very much.
Appreciate that.
I was speaking at a
Rotary Club meeting,
and a pilot came up,
and he asked
if I wanted to fly
in an airplane.
My dad, who's an
aviation enthusiast,
was standing right beside me.
He said, "She would
love to."
Whenever I went up
on a commercial jet,
as early as I can remember,
I was just terrified,
so the thought of being in
a single-engine airplane--
that's crazy.
-That was all about being
a fear that she had,
but I think it was
the right decision,
because flying is an
exciting adventure for anyone.
Jessica: The pilot said,
"How about trying to put
your foot on the yoke?"
I slipped my shoe off,
I put my right foot
up on the yoke,
and I was just beaming
because here was the ultimate
form of independence.
I said, "I'd like
to be a pilot."
Pilot: Turn the master
switch on here.
Inez: I worried
about the flying.
I said, "How can you?"
Jessica: If I was going to
overcome my greatest fear,
which was flying,
it was going to be a very
emotional challenge for me.
-The Ercoupe is
unique because
unlike every other
airplane in the world,
you don't have any pedals
that you have to use to fly it.
I taught somebody
that had polio
and only had use of one leg.
but the thought of teaching
someone without arms
is much more daunting,
and I talked to other
flight instructors,
and they were less
than encouraging.
Jessica: Pull it up real
quick so it doesn't dry.
I'd experienced a lot of
discrimination before,
and I knew that
that was apt to happen,
but we were very conscientious
about what we did
and made sure that we did
everything that was right.
I have a very hard head, so...
I am going through
the cockpit checklist,
and then I will go through
the takeoff checklist, as well,
and I've been doing this
every single morning.
OK. This is the shoulder straps
for the seatbelt.
One challenge I had
in flight training--
buckling up the 4-point harness.
How do you buckle up
something around you?
Glen: Jessica said to me,
"Would you mind stepping
away from the airplane
"and let me work on it
and come back in
about a half-hour?"
I said sure, and I
thought to myself,
"How is she going to do this?"
Jessica: So it'll be
all the way.
Glen: This was going
to be almost impossible.
It's not going to work.
Jessica: I actually
stood up on the seat,
buckled the harness first,
loosened the straps,
slipped in...
And that's it!
We didn't have things
worked out, and I found out
that the throttle was too
high up on the control panel
for me to safely
maneuver this plane,
so Glen did not
sign me off for soloing.
Glen: My hope was we would
find another Ercoupe
that she could solo and
ultimately get her license in.
I never found an instructor
that was willing to do it.
Jessica: I felt like
everyone had given up
on the possibility of
me becoming a pilot.
Came to find out about
Parrish Traweek
in my own back yard,
only an hour drive from Tucson,
and he had me in
his Ercoupe airplane,
training, less than
24 hour from meeting him.
-I can tell you that nothing
was given to Jessica.
Nothing was made easier for her,
and at times, things were
made tougher for her.
You're going to round out--
boom, same picture.
Jessica: There was a point
where I was scared to land,
and he just said, "Jessica,
you know you can do it.
You know you can do it."
Parrish: We had some
pretty heated discussions
and knew she could do it,
but the landing issue was tough.
That was a lot of work.
Jessica: I was
prepared to solo,
and I invited all my family
and friends to the airport.
I was distracted.
I was paying more attention
to the people there.
Parrish said, you know,
"There's no way
I'm going to sign you up
to solo right now,"
and I knew I was
disappointing people.
The next morning,
with only one other
student at the airport,
Parrish says, "I'll let you
solo the airplane."
Parrish: Is it recording?
Man: It says it is.
Parrish: Here goes Jessica
on her solo flight.
Looks good.
Jessica: Parrish said,
"Before you go,
you have to make sure that
you can hear me on the radio,"
so I tested out the radio.
[Jessica speaks on radio;
Turned my first crosswind turn,
and then I heard static,
and I said, "Don't tell me.
That's the radio."
Parrish: Can you
hear me, Jessica?
Parrish: Hey, Jessica,
can you hear me?
She's got something wrong
with her headset or something.
Jessica: Parrish, I can't
really hear you.
Parrish: OK. Just keep flying
the airplane. You're OK.
Just fly the airplane.
Jessica: I need
all traffic...
Came in to land,
and I was low and slow.
Parrish: She's all right.
Stabilize out.
[Engine revs]
Good decision.
That was a good move.
Can you hear me?
Can you take this camera?
I'm going to go out there,
and hopefully, I'll just
get her to full-stop land,
because now she's
rattled a little.
You know what I mean?
Man: Yeah.
Good landing, Jessica.
Jessica: I came around,
and I landed smoothly
on the second one.
I'm a perfectionist,
and I wanted to make sure
that that was a very good,
smooth landing.
That was so awesome!
I can't believe I did that.
Did I scare you?
You know, it wasn't so much
that I was proving
everyone who doubted me
that I could do this,
but it was more of
a personal achievement.
I had overcome my own fear.
Parrish: Anybody that
accomplishes a solo,
it's a huge deal.
I mean, I've had a lot of
men cry and stuff, you know?
It's a very emotional time.
Jessica: One of the
traditions in flying
is when you solo
for the first time,
they cut the tail of your shirt.
There's really
nothing like that.
That was so incredible.
It was the most empowering
thing I've ever done,
for sure.
First solo.
I'll just put my whole name.
Parrish: That was
very good, very good.
Jessica: Thank you.
[Engine starts]
I have to tell you,
I prayed a lot
to be able to do that,
and so, it was almost like
seeing a miracle come true,
right before my very eyes.
I was up high, flying,
like Superwoman.
-Our next guest is living proof
that you can
accomplish anything.
Please welcome Jessica Cox.
-Her name landed in
the Guinness world record
for being the first woman
to fly a plane without arms.
-President Obama met with
Jessica Cox at the White House
and called her an inspiration.
-She's being honored
at the White House
in commemoration of
the 20th anniversary
of the Americans with
Disabilities Act.
Obama: Equal access.
Not dependence,
but independence.
That's what the ADA
was all about.
-The ADA has helped me in ways
that I don't even know.
-Our young person who arrives
this week is Jessica Cox.
-Now 25-year-old Jessica Cox
is a licensed pilot,
which is pretty incredible
considering she was
born with no arms.
-You're currently
a motivational speaker.
I'm a motivational speaker,
but I hope to have
a bigger impact
and change the perspective
of disability.
-Last month,
Jessica went to Rome,
this time to offer
Pope Benedict XVI
her prized possession.
Jessica: He embraced
my face, and I told him,
"I'd like you to have this
Guinness world record medal,"
and then I said, "Please pray
for my mother, who is sick,"
and he said, "I will."
I'm going to find her.
Is my mom around here?
Hey, Mom.
We first found out about my mom
having cancer in 2007.
That was right about the time
when I was pretty intense
with flight training.
She was going to have
her first surgery
to remove a part of her lung.
It was a time when I
know she really needed
my family to be there
to support her,
and my mom said,
"Don't worry about me.
"I want you to go out there
and, you know, train,
like you had planned."
And then in 2009,
we found out
that the cancer had
metastasized to her brain.
It is my mom's 59th birthday,
and this will be
the very first time
I've ever flown her
in the Ercoupe.
Inez: I could not believe
until the day that I rode
in the plane with her.
I said, "Oh, my gosh,
you really can fly."
-She wants to go up again.
That was too short.
I think it brought home
the point to treasure her,
and every single day,
I still remind myself that...
that I don't want to
take her for granted.
The hardest challenge
for me growing up
was being able
to use the restroom
and get dressed in the
morning without my mom.
It took me close to 11 years.
One of the therapists
at the Shriners Hospital
came up with the idea of
a windshield repair tool.
It was the key to me being able
to be an independent person.
The most important
thing I learned--
if you can be creative enough,
you can be persistent,
then you can figure it out.
Instructor: Jump to
a middle stance.
Good. We are going to
start off with high blocks.
I was teaching
a taekwondo class,
and in walks this woman,
and I remember thinking,
who is this person
who won't take the time
to take her arms out of her
jacket and return a hug?
I thought it was kind of rude.
But not long after,
I realized my mistake.
Jessica: Getting to
know him, I was like,
"This guy, he's pretty cute,
and he's sweet."
We both liked each other,
and it was obvious.
I kind of dropped some hints.
So once he was no longer
my instructor,
that's when we started...
working through the...
Woman: Oh, Jessica,
it's so pretty!
Look at the mirror,
right here.
Jessica: Wow.
Mom has to see this.
Woman: We try on
the veil, too, no?
Man: Yeah. We can.
Jessica: Mom,
where are you right now?
Woman: Let me go get it.
Did you want to try it?
Look at that!
-Here. What do you think?
Jessica: And you, Mom--
your face.
What do you think?
Inez: Yeah.
I'm losing my girl.
A little girl, OK, a baby,
that I used to carry around,
and now she's
grown up and...
And I realize everyone
grows up, you know.
I used to go
with her, trips,
like we went to Greece
and every other country.
Now it's going to
be her husband.
I'll be missing her,
but everyone is entitled
to fall in love.
Patrick: I first met her
as her taekwondo instructor.
It wasn't that, "Oh, look at
this really awesome person.
"Look at all the stuff
she can do.
"She can use chopsticks.
She can fly an airplane.
She can do all this
stuff with her feet."
It was, "OK. Kick me in
the head with your foot
as fast as you can
before I can block it."
It was a unique position
that gave me a chance
to quickly get over,
"Well, she's really awesome."
She is.
Jessica: One couple we haven't
sent an invitation to...
I did tell him,
my life before you
was a lot about doing
things on my own,
and it was about
proving my independence.
I remember one point
when it was just like,
"Oh, I'm really going to
give all this up,"
and I almost felt like
I was going to lose
a part of myself,
of who I am.
-I'm never really
catering to your needs
of, "Oh, do you need
help with this?"
I don't let you get lazy.
No. That's also true, yeah.
Jackie: You should see mom.
She looks great.
Jessica: Really?
Jackie: Yeah. She looks
really great.
Jessica: The wig looks like
her real hair right now,
under that hat.
That's crazy.
That's really...
Mom, you look great!
You really do, Mom.
Jackie: My gosh, Mom,
20 years younger.
Inez: Oh! Really.
-Hi, Jessica.
Jessica: Oh, hey!
How are you?
-Oh, you look so pretty!
Jessica: Oh, thanks.
It's good to see you, girl.
So, have you girls been to
other weddings? I'm sure.
-Not like this one.
Jessica: Really?
Jessica: I know you're
going to have your day
one of these days, you know?
I was in no rush
myself, personally.
Girl: I first met Jessica,
and it was pretty amazing.
I was like,
I didn't know anybody
who didn't have arms yet,
and then I was all like,
"Oh, my gosh!
She doesn't have arms,
and she's, like, cool."
Ha ha!
She's just
really confident.
She's like a
role model to me.
Jessica: Have a stab.
One of the girls that
I was mentoring, Ira,
doesn't think any of the
guys are going to date her.
To see someone who doesn't
have any arms get married
and find love and find someone
who can love in return
and see me for me
I think will change
her in a way
that my older mentor
changed me.
-She seems really laid back.
-She said she was nervous,
but she was excited, too.
Teresa: She doesn't act
nervous, though.
She's just like,
"OK. I'm having my wedding.
This is so cool."
Jessica: This was
specifically made
by a designer
in the Philippines.
Jessica: Because I said
I wanted something
that kind of like
had this feeling
of, you know,
whole and complete
because a lot of dresses
are sleeveless or tube top.
Anna: Right.
That's really cool.
Her dress is beautiful.
It's like a custom dress.
Teresa: Her dress
is so awesome.
Ira: It has like these
bead bling stuff on it.
-Did you ever wonder
about that--
like what you would do
for, like, a wedding ring?
What about you, Ira?
Ira: I don't--
I don't know.
-She looks so pretty.
-I know.
She looks beautiful.
Woman: Mr. Groom, up here
for me, please.
Those are your shoes?
Patrick: Yes.
Woman: OK. Are you wearing
these shoes for the wedding?
Patrick: Yes.
Woman: Really?
Patrick: If my feet are
comfortable, I'm happy,
and I don't really care
that they look different.
There is a lot of attention paid
to feet in this wedding.
Yes. There is a lot of
attention paid to that.
Jason: I'm very happy
about the wedding.
I didn't have the normal
mother/son relationship,
but to see Jessica
where she is now,
it was all worth it, you know?
Music: We've no less days
To sing God's praise
Than when we've first begun
[Organ chords play]
Man: All please rise
to welcome the bride.
It was not the eyes
that saw something
beautiful in each other.
It was their heart,
and you saw the most beautiful
thing in each other
that convinced you that you
are meant for one another.
Patrick: Jessica,
take this anklet
as a sign of my love
and fidelity.
Jessica: Patrick,
take this ring
as a sign of my love
and fidelity.
Officiant: It is
my joy and honor
to introduce and welcome
the newly wedded couple,
Mr. and Mrs. Patrick
[Music playing]
Ira: Patrick is kind
of like a prince,
and Jessica looks
pretty tonight,
and it's really special.
[Applause and cheering]
Man: Aww!
Teresa: I would say it
was well choreographed,
and it was pretty amazing
how they, like, did it
without, like, tripping on
the dress or anything.
I've never seen, like,
a dance with someone
who has no arms, so it
was interesting to see
how that would go.
Man: Yay!
Jessica: There's no
frosting on here. Ha ha!
Emcee: Bring that music
down a little bit.
On the count of 3,
are you ready?
[Cheering and laughter]
Man: Oh! Oh, my god!
Jessica: One of the things
that I have to live with
is that my birth wasn't
a happy scene,
and that, I think,
has given me a great mission
to help parents
who have children
who are born differently,
to let them know that
they can celebrate
and they can have joy
for their child.
Woman: Do your
somersaults, girls.
-Do a somersault.
Be careful.
Ready? Go.
Ha ha ha ha!
Going to our first ultrasound,
it was a shock.
[Girls giggling]
-When they told us that
she didn't have any arms,
it was just...it was
hard to take at first.
Patricia: I told Greg,
"I want you to name her,"
and I just figured
he really needed that.
Why he come up with Grace,
I don't know,
but I think it fits.
Greg: Yeah.
[Knock on door]
Jessica: Hi!
Patricia: Open the door.
Jessica: Hello.
Hi. I'm Jessica.
Patricia: How are you?
Jessica: I've heard
so much about you all.
I'm good. How are you?
And Greg, right?
How are you?
Greg: Good.
And of course, Gracie.
Greg: Say hi.
Patricia: Told you she was going
to come and see you today.
Greg: First time I think
I heard about Jessica Cox,
I think I might have been
working, and I was on break,
and I seen a little
clip of her on the TV,
on the "Ellen" show.
I emailed her.
I said it'd be
nice to meet you.
Jessica: But I was
born without arms,
so from very early age...
Girl: My dad decided that
he wouldn't go back to work.
He wanted to stay home
and help Gracie.
Every once in a while,
he would cry.
He's kind of like that,
taking it a little
too hard on himself,
wishing that he could change it.
Jessica: I see you,
Gracie, in the mirror.
Oh! Ha ha ha!
OK. Are we ready to go?
Grace: Yeah.
Jessica: Head to preschool.
What's your favorite
thing to play on?
Grace: A slide.
Jessica: Me, too!
The slide was my favorite.
Grace: This--
this is mine.
Jessica: Oh, OK.
It's funny. I prefer the
cups with handles, too.
Patricia: I'm seeing
that there's a lot
of everything alike
that you guys do,
and it's just amazing.
Jessica: When I was
about your age,
I didn't want to trip and
fall on the playground,
so I had to learn
how to tie my laces
without any hands,
without any arms.
How many of you--
just raise your hand--
are learning how to
tie your shoelaces?
Over and through...
So, under there...
The first time I did this,
this took a long time,
but the most important
thing is that I practiced.
Every day, I practiced,
and I said, "I'm never
going to give up
unless I can tie my shoes."
Pull to tighten.
Patricia: Being with Gracie,
I think my first moment
of realizing, wow,
she doesn't--
they're not there
was when I gave her her bath.
I went to go pick her up
out of the bathtub,
and she just went right through
my arms, down into the tub.
All I could do was cry.
I mean, I just...
I was...I was like,
"I'm so sorry."
To get her back into
a bathtub after that
was some work.
-1, 2, 3, go.
You win!
You win.
Grace: I can't swim.
Jessica: You could swim
if you practice.
Hey, I'll show you
how I swim, OK?
Megan: You can come sit
on the stairs first.
Jessica: If you come closer,
you can see better.
Come sit right there.
Megan: On the edge.
Jessica: I'm going to
doggy paddle first,
because that's the
first thing to do.
Want to come out here,
just hold your sister?
Megan: You'll be OK.
Grace: No! No! Aah!
Jessica: You don't
have to come in.
It's OK.
You can just watch.
I'm going to swim
there and back.
Megan: Is that cool?
-It's scary to put your
head in the water at first.
Megan: Take a step.
You'll be fine.
Grace: It's deep.
Megan: It's not deep, honey.
I'll hold you.
Grace: No.
Megan: No?
Jessica: How about
we try sitting?
I'll sit beside you, too.
Does that work?
Want me to try?
So we go one step at a time.
I'm going to come over there,
and I'm going to sit
right beside you here,
and we're going to go down
one at a time...
very slowly, and then
your sister is there.
She can catch you.
OK? 1...
Megan: Go down one more.
I'll be right there. See?
See? Just go slow.
You'll be OK.
Jessica: There!
Kick, kick, kick.
Come on. We're almost there.
We're almost there.
Yay! We made it.
Megan: Good job.
Give me 5.
Jessica: Give me 5, too.
Oh! It was good!
Grace: Now let's
do it again.
Megan: You want
to do it again?
Jessica: Come on.
Megan: Keep kicking.
Jessica: We're almost
at the back of the pool.
Yay! We're on the deep end.
Ha ha ha!
I remember when a girl
looked absolutely terrified,
like she was going
to lose her job,
because she was
giving me a rental car.
It's really great
to kind of, like,
mess with people's expectations
like that sometimes.
Woman: Hi.
Long time, no see.
Jessica: Hi.
It's been a while.
Barbara: How you doing?
Instructor: You can be nervous.
Barbara: Oh!
Jessica: So you're going
to eventually do it
without her, though.
Barbara: Yeah.
Jessica: OK.
Barbara: Unfortunately,
she can't go on stage with me.
Jessica: Yeah.
Barbara: I wasn't sure I really
wanted to share with you
my perspective of our
first couple of meetings
because I was like, uh,
it's going to sound rude
or mean, and I don't want it
to come across that way,
but there were several things
you wanted to learn how to do.
One of them was pushing
a shopping cart.
You thought it was
going to be difficult,
and it seemed like,
"Well, my mom is just going to
come and help me shop
up at college
every weekend."
And I thought, man,
she's just perfectly content
to let her mom
do this for her.
Am I wasting my time up here,
trying to help this girl?
So I'm glad to see that...
Jessica: It had a
positive influence.
Barbara: That it
all paid off.
Patrick: So, do you have any
cooking tips, by the way?
Barbara: Well, I know
that you said
that you do all the cooking.
Is that because you
just love to cook?
Patrick: I do like to cook.
but, you know, doing all of
the chopping and everything...
Barbara: You don't do the
chopping at all, or anything?
Jessica: I do the dishes.
Man: Oh. Thank you, sir.
Patrick: You're welcome.
Jessica: I'm going to
have the coconut.
Barbara: She was kind of
worried about, you know,
because we spent
so much of our lives
proving that we can be
independent, you know,
even kind of doing
extreme things
just to prove people wrong
and prove that we can do things,
she was kind of worried
that getting married
was going to take away
some of that, but...
Quinton: In our case,
it didn't because
I learned very soon, very early
in our relationship
to just help her when
she asks for it,
because she's so independent.
Barbara: You know,
when you get married,
yeah, you are dependent
on each other,
but it's a different
type of dependence.
Patrick: Yeah.
Jessica: Patrick and I,
we work together as a team,
and right now, we are
on a speaking tour
that started in San Francisco,
then flew to Seattle,
then flew back to San Francisco,
then flew to Kansas City.
Patrick: It's been very
challenging for me.
I went from, a year ago,
working 40 hours a week,
and then I got to step away
and do my own thing,
to now Jessica wakes up
in the morning,
and before she says hello,
she's checking emails
on her phone.
Jessica: Looks good.
Man: All right.
Thank you very much.
From how I write
to how I eat
to how I do everything
in my life...
[Audio fades out]
Woman on video: Today,
one billion people worldwide
are considered disabled,
and many are
kept hidden away,
denied an education and
other basic human rights.
A new United Nations treaty,
the Convention on the Rights
of Persons with Disabilities,
offers some hope.
When Ethiopia signed the CRPD,
it paved the way for
Handicap International
to open 6 schools to
children with disabilities.
Patrick: We receive emails
on a weekly basis,
"My life in my country
has been so difficult.
"I was born with a disability.
Can you help me?"
And up to this point,
Jessica really hasn't known
how to make a change.
-This is a trip to help
children with disabilities.
This is something
I've never done before,
so this is unique
in that respect,
that I'm not being
paid to be there.
No one's being paid.
We're there to help people
and change attitudes.
My greatest fear is, what if
I can't make a difference?
What if things are just
going to be the same,
and this is pointless,
this is a waste of time, energy,
and people's support
Jessica: I hope that
it shows the world
and it shows people in Ethiopia
that disability does
not mean inability.
Handicap International
invited Tariku
to Addis to meet with me.
How are you?
It's nice to meet you.
I do this thing with my feet
when I meet people.
Want to do that?
One foot?
It was very difficult
to break down his wall.
He has never seen a white
person in his life.
It's funny because the only time
I'm looked at as a white person
is if I'm in Africa.
Let me put this away.
I think it was the first
time for him to ride a car,
and of course the very first
time he'd ever seen an airplane,
so all this was
coming at him.
OK. Bye-bye.
See you in the air.
I'll be up in the air.
OK? I'll wave at you
from up there.
At 10,500?
Pilot: Yeah.
10,500, 900, a thousand.
Feel free.
Jessica: I'll pull us
up a little.
Man: We just want
to say something.
Keep pushing for the lives
of people with disability,
of not physical, but mind.
I will need you
for that, all right?
Jessica: Yeah.
Did you get to see that--
us coming in?
Translator: Yeah. He's just
being a little shy.
[People singing
in native language]
Jessica: We've been hearing how
children who have disabilities
are hidden at home,
denied the opportunity
to go to school.
They're burdens on
their families.
They end up
being embarrassments.
I was there hoping to
bring inspiration to them
and show what's possible.
Hello. Should I take
my shoes here?
Man: Welcome, welcome.
Yeah. Can't move
on her own.
-How many brothers
and sisters do you have?
[People speaking
native language]
Hodan, haltingly:
I have 2 sister
and 3 brother.
Man: That's good. Yeah.
Jessica: Ah, good.
That's good English.
She wasn't delayed to the extent
that I expected to see,
hearing that she'd
been hidden away.
What is your message
to Ethiopians,
to the rest of the world?
[Hodan speaking
native language]
Jessica: That's a very
beautiful message.
Thank you for sharing that.
Man: Yeah. She also
translates what she said.
That's so, so funny.
[Hodan speaking
native language]
Jessica: It was really hard
to walk away
from that situation
and say that I was powerless;
I couldn't do anything about it.
Man: Welcome, welcome.
[Speaking native language]
Jessica: Hello?
[Man speaking native language]
[Tiyan speaking native language]
Man: She's a little
bit nervous, yeah?
Jessica: How could I expect
someone who's visually impaired
to open up to me?
I told her to feel me,
to touch me,
touch my face,
my hair, my feet.
Man: I see you now
very well, she said.
Jessica: She had to feel that
I was holding the Popsicle
with my right foot.
I use my toes.
I'm using my feet.
[Tiyan speaking
native language]
And she had to feel my anklet.
Tiyan: Yeah!
Ha ha ha ha!
[Tiyan speaking
native language]
Man: she said you have
to love her very much.
Patrick: Ha ha!
Oh, thank you. I do.
[Tiyan speaking
native language]
Jessica: It was just really
hard to hear her story
of losing her sight and
then having these seizures.
It was very hard.
For me, sometimes it's
difficult to be different
because people
treat me differently,
and sometimes they're scared.
Sometimes they don't
know what to do.
Sometimes it's awkward.
I wanted to know what it's
like for you sometimes.
[Tiyan speaking
native language]
My mother would do the
same thing for me, too.
She'd always say, you know,
"Don't feel sorry for her,"
when I was younger.
[Tiyan speaking
native language]
Jessica: Wow.
You're an inspiration
to me, too,
that you are able to overcome
all that you have.
[Man speaking
native language]
Tiyan: Ahh...
Jessica: Thank you.
Children: Welcome, welcome!
Welcome, welcome!
Jessica, we love you.
We love you.
Jessica: Each of you
have something in you
that will allow you
to push through
the most difficult times.
[Woman speaking
native language]
[Girls speaking
native language]
Man: She has mental problem.
She can't write.
She can only draw a circle
in her exercise book.
Man: Circles on
her exercise book.
Jessica: I don't think
I need to hear any more,
because all I see
is a beautiful girl
and someone who tries,
and that's all that matters.
Oftentimes, people told me
that I didn't have
hope for the future
when I was a child.
They'd see me walking around.
I didn't have arms.
I couldn't do anything,
and it's not--
I learned that it's
not what they say.
It's what you do, so don't
let anyone discourage you.
Man: Look at her.
Look at her.
Being with all the girls
made me question how much
I took for granted.
Disability is also hardship,
poverty, and pain,
and I heard that in
these girls' stories,
and I told them, I'm going
to hold all of your stories
close to heart, and if
there's ever a time
that I have difficulty
in my own life,
I will remember you.
Oh! Thank you.
Really learning things
along the way...
Patrick: Jessica was
being in front of press
and meeting people...
I had to be there to help
her kind of decompress.
Jessica: Wow.
Bye! Ha ha ha!
Photographer: 1, 2, 3.
Patrick: I don't think
I could do anything better
than just be there for her.
Jessica: I'll introduce you
to my husband Patrick.
We want to share with you
part of our wedding dance.
Patrick: 1, 2, 3, 4.
1, 2, 3, 4.
1, 2...
[Cheering and applause]
For many people, that was
a real surprise,
that Jessica could get married.
A lot of people got
a lot of inspiration
about the fact that I
was Jessica's husband.
It showed everybody the
relationship Jessica and I have
and the love we share.
Jessica: I'm here
to empower others
and share the importance
of including
all those who have disabilities.
-I would like to make...
Jessica: Someone with
a hearing disability
stood up and said,
"We have someone here,
"Addis Sintayehu, who is
amazing--very similar to you.
He uses his feet,
and we'd like to hear him."
[Rhythmic applause]
[Speaking native language]
Jessica: Let's go over
to that table.
Patrick: OK.
[Server speaking
native language]
Man: He's going to
show you how to eat.
The piece of meat. OK.
Man: All right.
Oh, wow.
You did it on the first one.
Patrick: How spicy?
Jessica: Mm...
Jessica: Ebba explained that
part of the cultural thing
is to share by
feeding each other.
[Ebba speaking
native language]
Jessica: You're expressing
your love for someone
by feeding them?
Ebba: Yay!
Ha ha ha!
Jessica: Mmm!
Thank you.
[Ebba speaking
native language]
He's like, "You're OK."
Jessica: We were eating,
and there on Ethiopian TV
was my presentation,
but that's not what was special.
It was Addis Sintayehu
speaking to everyone,
sharing with the world
that he's a human being,
he's accomplished,
and he should be seen.
That's how it all has to start.
[Woman speaking
native language]
Jessica: Hi! Hi.
[Speaking native language]
Jessica: You helped me
see more, too.
How could I ever
forget you?
I realize this
trip has been...
This trip has been
life-changing for me,
and it has really taught me
how my life could bring
great purpose to so many,
and I don't realize how much
of an impact I can make.
Patrick: 3 years ago,
I would have never imagined
doing all of this,
but now I wouldn't want
to do anything else.
Man: Without objection,
continuing the debate
on the Convention
on the Rights of Persons
with Disabilities treaty.
-Today, there are over
one billion people
with disabilities,
and 80% of them live
in developing countries.
Disability rights is an issue
that the world cannot
afford to overlook.
-We want to be part of a
worldwide effort that says,
"You know, it's not right.
"It's not OK to leave a baby
on the side of the road to die,"
just simply because that
baby has Down Syndrome.
-Some of my colleagues
might be satisfied
with the assurances
provided by some lawyers
within the State Department
to the effect that
this is entirely
compatible with US law,
to the effect that
it would not impose
any additional, new,
different obligations on US law.
I'm not satisfied
that that is the case.
I therefore object.
Thank you, Mr. President.
-The yeas are 61.
The nays are 38.
Two-thirds of
the senators present
not having voted
in the affirmative,
the resolution of ratification
is not agreed to.
-This was kind of a
slam dunk--you'd think.
-How did this happen?
-Next year, you might
bring this up again?
-Yes. We're going
to come back.
When we left Ethiopia,
I felt powerless in the
situations like Hodan,
like Tiyan and Tariku.
Their voices and their
stories haunted me.
-This is Chambliss.
We're not going to meet him,
but then Isakson,
we will meet.
Jessica: The Convention
on the Rights
of Persons with Disabilities
is based on
the Americans with
Disabilities Act,
which allowed me to fly
a plane, drive a car,
and go to school.
We actually spent
about 10 days going
from Dire Dawa to Harerge,
these little provincial areas.
We spent a couple days
in Addis, also.
Woman, center: So explain,
you know, "We need you."
You can ask,
"What's your position,"
which is perfect, you know?
Woman, left: But then
the follow-up is,
"We need your support
for this treaty."
Jessica: OK.
-Why take this message
to other people?
-Just hearing stories
like Hodan,
who hadn't been in school
for 16 years.
She was kept at home.
This CRPD is going to ensure
that these children
who have disabilities
have the same opportunities
that I've been given.
Thank you for
taking the time
to allow us to come and chat
with you about the CRPD.
Isakson: When they
ask an old man about
a beautiful woman visiting,
I always say yes.
Oh, look at there!
Jessica: That's the Ercoupe
airplane that I fly.
Man: Hey, Jessica.
Jessica: Uh-huh?
Man: Let me introduce
you to someone.
Woman: I had to stop.
I was behind you
in the other way.
My friend--
I'm sorry if I cry.
My friend just found out last
week that she's 21 weeks along
with a boy who
doesn't have arms,
and she's so fearful that he
is going to struggle in life,
and she's going through
a lot right now,
and I just passed you,
and I was hoping to
give you my business card.
She's right here
in Washington.
Jessica: I would love
to meet with her
and just tell her that
he's going to be just fine.
I know children
all over the country
who are born without arms.
We'll make an effort to do
whatever we can with her.
Woman: I know it's tough.
I know you're here to lobby,
and I know that takes time.
Jessica: Oh, no. We will--
This is what my life is about.
Taking a step into
disability advocacy
has really made sense of
everything that I've done.
Patrick: We're going to
head over to the church.
Jessica: Let's see.
Really good, Pat.
Patrick: Thank you.
Jessica: The chocolate's,
like, overwhelming,
with chocolate chips in it.
[Choir singing]
It's been very hard.
My mom has shown some
serious resilience.
She's never once complained
about coming to chemo
or going to radiation.
I always knew she was
a strong person,
but to see her go through
all that she has.
It's slowed her down
a little bit,
but her spirit is same.
Man: Before I formed you
in the womb, I knew you.
Before you were born,
I dedicated you.
Corker: How are you?
Jessica: Hello, Senator.
How are you?
I'm Jessica Cox.
This is my husband Patrick.
Corker: Hey, Patrick.
How are you, sir?
Patrick: Nice to meet you.
Jessica: This will
provide opportunities
for those with disabilities.
I'm a pilot myself,
so I fly with my feet,
but I know that
those opportunities
of becoming a pilot,
despite my disability,
would not have possible
if it wasn't for the ADA,
so I'm hoping to ensure
that all those abroad
can be given that
same opportunity.
Corker: I know when
you're pursuing a cause,
the cause is--
but there are actually
some real legal issues
that I think
can be resolved,
and I think, you know--
but they've got to be
willing to want to do that.
So far, it has been received
with more of a pat on the hat.
Let's just make sure that
through international law
or, you know,
subversion, if you will,
of the commerce clause, that we
try to address those issues.
So I thank you, OK?
Corker: I want to
thank Secretary Kerry
for being here today,
and as I mentioned
to some of the leading
advocates just a minute ago,
I hope that this hearing
will be more about substance
and less about cheerleading.
Kerry: There are countries where
children with disabilities
are warehoused from birth,
denied even a
birth certificate.
Not a real person.
The United States has
the ability to impact that
by the passage of this treaty.
Jessica: I talk all the time
about being fearless
and not having a fear,
but I fear that
politics is going to
get in the way of
such a huge, important decision
that could help
millions of people.
-Tonight, the most powerful
storm on the planet
has slammed directly
into the Philippines.
Super typhoon Haiyan could be
the strongest of any storm ever.
Jessica: Hi, Mom.
Inez: Hi.
Jessica: I wish
you were here.
I miss traveling with you.
Inez: Yeah.
It's going to be hard
to miss the therapy, you know.
Jessica: Yeah.
People often ask me, where do
you get your strength,
and I think about my mom and
the resilience that I see
time and time again with
the Filipino people.
Good morning.
Nice to see you.
Jessica: This is
my husband Patrick.
Cuisia: Hi.
How are you?
So, over 4,000 people
have been killed,
more than 18,000 injured.
Jessica: In the discussion
with the ambassador,
we talked about how
wonderful it would be
to be able to bring a message
of hope and resilience.
That was something
my mom taught me,
is just not to give up.
There are people here
who still need support.
It's ongoing support they need.
[Man speaking
native language]
[Woman speaking
native language]
Jessica: Why here,
the strongest typhoon
in history?
We came on the area where
the boats had been washed up
by the waves, and all
these big fishing boats.
One of the boats had
painted on it,
"Lord, forgive us,"
it made me realize
that a lot of people
may have thought that
it was their fault.
The most important
thing was my family
and being there for my mom.
If she could right now,
she would be here.
If she had the physical
capability to, she would.
It's really...
This is where
my mother was born.
This is where all of her
12 siblings were born.
This is where
her father passed away
when she was only months old.
To see all the destruction
that happened to it,
it's really sad.
What was the sound like?
Marian: My God.
You know what?
It was...it was...
I put my fingers in here because
I couldn't hear anymore.
That was the first time I
experienced a whirling wind.
Whirling wind.
Jessica: Were you scared?
Patrick: 1, 2, 3.
Ready. 1, 2 ,3.
Jessica: So, how many
tents are here total?
Woman: 100.
Jessica: 100?
[Bell clanging]
[Churchgoers singing]
Hallelu, hallelu
Jessica: I know
that people here
are questioning
their own faith.
What am I going to tell them?
What can I tell them?
I travel all over the world
to inspire people,
but I know this trip,
what has given me
my strength and faith
is how everyone has
dealt with the typhoon
and to know that
you can still smile...
[Voice catching]
and you can get
through the struggles.
Because I remember as a child,
how difficult it was
and how much I questioned
my own faith
as to why God allowed something
like this to happen to me.
I realize that had I not
been given the struggles
that I've had
throughout my life,
I wouldn't have the opportunity
to inspire so many people.
God has a plan
for each of us,
and we become stronger
with our own struggles.
[Speaking native language]
[Man singing in
native language]
[Churchgoers singing
in native language]
[Man praying
native language]
Jessica: Amen.
If I fly an airplane
without arms,
what is it that you cannot do?
Woman: For inspiring women,
especially those
with disabilities,
by her exemplary
Jessica: It's very
rewarding to know that
my mom was my strength
when I was weak,
and now I'm able
to be the strength
and give that back
to her home country.
Thank you for this great honor.
I know so much of my success is
because of the Filipino spirit
of not giving up, of having
the strength to succeed,
and to know that with God,
all things are possible.
[Speaking native language]
It's amazing how
when you're grateful
and you move forward
with your life,
things are going to happen,
opportunities are
going to come.
[Speaking native language]
I can tell you today that
if I was given the choice,
I wouldn't want the arms
because of the wonderful
things I've been able to do
and the lives that
I've been able to touch.
What time was your
appointment, again?
3:00? 3:00?
Inez: Yeah.
I did not expect to live
for Jessica's wedding
because they were always
telling me "3 months."
But in my thinking, I said no,
I want to fight for this.
I'm a fighter.
So I'm still here.
Jessica: I think she's
ready for a grandchild,
and that will come in time,
but I don't know
about right now.
Are you ready
for a grandchild, Mom?
Inez: Yes.
Jessica: As long as you're
willing to baby-sit.
Inez: Ha ha! Yes.
Jessica: Got it?
Hold on.
Inez: All I was thinking was,
I would take care of Jessica
and all her--
all her life,
and it's the opposite now.
She's taking care of me.
Jessica: Mom, thank you!
Inez: I think you like pink.
Jessica: Thank you, Mom.
That was--she know
ice-cream cake is my favorite
of all time.
Bill: A toast to Jessica
for her birthday.
Patrick: Before we got married,
Jessica was so worried about
losing her independence,
but I think I've given up
a fair amount of my independence
in exchange for
a wonderful relationship.
Life with Jessica
is just amazing.
Jessica: At the rate
that I've been going
and Patrick and I together
have been going as a team,
there is no telling where
we'll be in the next year or so.
We've been able to be a voice
for people with disabilities,
and I hope it can continue,
because so many people
with disabilities
have been shoved aside.
And if they need me,
I'll be there.
Man: Yeah!
Jessica: Wow! Whoo.
Patrick: Wow!