Lowell - Jeni Rummelt always wanted to run a fitness club, so she opened Solid Impact Fitness with her husband in 2001.
"This was my dream and two months later I'm like 'ok, I can't use any of this now," said Rummelt after a car accident left her paralyzed from the waist down.
"My family and I were in Iowa and we were hit head on. Somebody crossed over the median of I-80 and hit us head on. My first thought is 'Oh my gosh', there went my house, and my business and I don't know what's going to happen with my marriage."
Nearly six years later, the dream business is thriving and Jeni's marriage to Trent is strong, she's even had two kids since her accident. Rummelt now has a new dream, something that used to come naturally.
"It is my belief that I will walk again."
The first step, a trip to Moscow, Russia. For a procedure not available in the u-s - adult stem cell therapy at the Neurovita Clinic.
"The give you shots for four days on the 5th day what those shots have done is make your bone marrow create an abundance of stem cells."
The stem cells are drawn from Rummelt's own blood and separated in a special machine. Then they are injected into her spinal fluid. Three trips and six injections later Rummelt can use her hip-flexers to crawl. A considerable feat, after not being able to move the lower half of her body for years.
"I had no feeling, no sensation, if my leg fell I had no idea at all," said Rummelt. With therapy Rummelt grows stronger everyday she can even stand. And she can actually feel pain in her foot, five years post injury.
Rummelt credits the stem cell injections and her intense physical therapy.
"Every other week, something is getting stronger or I'm feeling something different, or a little bit more."
Even the slightest change makes her push harder. And hopefully with more stem cell injections Rummelt can finally get back on her feet.
"Nothing is going to stand in my way, I'm going to keep trying."
Adult stem cell therapy is conducted in the Unites States for cancer patients, it is not approved for spinal cord injuries.
Rummelt's treatments are not covered by insurance and the estimated expenses are more than 150 thousand dollars. Her next trip Russia is May 24th.
A fundraiser is being held for her this Saturday, May 19th at St. Mary's Church in Lowell. For more information you can call 616-897-9763.