A double amputee is hoping posing for a set of racy photographs will help to encourage others with disabilities that life still needs to be lived to the fullest.
Myah McDonald, 21, from Beaumont in Texas, was forced to have both of her legs amputated two years ago after a bucket list dare went terribly wrong.
The mother-of-one was climbing on top of a train when it jolted, knocking her off and dragging her underneath the wheels.
In hospital, she was put into a medically induced coma, where surgeons battled to save her life and remove her infected, severely torn lower legs.
After amputation, she had to relearn to walk with mobility aids and was given a prosthetic leg last year.
To celebrate Limb Loss Awareness month in the US, she completed a series of challenges including revealing her legs in a saucy photoshoot, driving, relearning to swim, learning to do a handstand and more.
Since finding motivation in her four-month-old daughter Harper, she hopes to inspire other disabled and able bodied people to push themselves to conquer their goals too.
Myah, a psychology student, said: ‘After losing my legs I could have just fallen into sadness and let it take over my life but I know I have to keep fighting for myself as well as my daughter.
‘With the challenges, I wanted to raise awareness and show that just because you’re an amputee doesn’t mean you can’t do the same things that able bodied people can.
‘Before I lost my leg I could never do a handstand so I thought it would be fun to start with that and after doing that I knew I could achieve much more.
‘Since then, I’ve relearned to swim, drive a car, I’ve ridden on a motorcycle, walked a whole day with my prosthetic, learned to walk on grass, had a sexy photoshoot and more.
‘At first I debated whether to post the pictures where I was dressed scandalously online, in the beginning I never liked people looking at my legs and would always put a blanket over them.
‘But I wanted to show others that amputees can be sexy too. It was one of the biggest steps I took in the challenge, but it was well worth it. The reactions were all incredibly uplifting.
‘Also, I had never ridden on a motorcycle before my accident, since then I’ve been so scared to do things in case I got into harm again – but I realised I still have to live my life to the fullest.
‘With all the challenges, I wanted to show people with disabilities that they can accomplish their dreams, you have to fight and never give up hope.’
Myah was trying to climb on top of a train to tick off an item from her bucket list when she was involved in the accident that robbed her of both legs in 2015.
Myah said: ‘I remember everything, it was very gruesome, my legs got caught under one of the wheels and I could feel the rocks under my body.
|The ‘gruesome’ accident saw McDonald pulled under a train after she tried to scale the top of it while it was moving as part of a bucket list challenge. Right: learning to walk again with the help of a frame|
‘I felt the pain the whole time, as I was dragged out from under the train my whole body felt like it was on fire.
‘I was bleeding profusely, I lost over half of the blood in my body – all I could do was try to slow down my breathing and heart rate so that I wouldn’t bleed out, it was terrifying.’
Medics feared Myah wouldn’t survive and performed a below the knee amputation on her right leg and a higher amputation on her left leg.
Myah added: ‘My legs were bad. On my right my ankle and foot were hanging on by a thread and the left was torn all apart.
‘Doctors thought I would probably die, I lost so much blood and there was a lot of tar and debris in my legs that they feared infection.’
Myah spent three months in hospital and recovery, then started relearning how to walk last year.
She wanted her challenges to remind the public and others with disabilities that they can do incredible things.
Myah said: ‘It’s crucial for someone relearning to walk that with their prosthetics that you have to push yourself, but to not over do it. My motivation is to one day walk a marathon.
‘There were days where I struggled, where I wished the train had taken me and I didn’t survive, but it does get better and you can be happy.’
She found inspiration from family and friends, as well as most recently her daughter, Harper.
Myah said: ‘My daughter gave me all the more reason to try, because it’s her future too and I want to do things like build a treehouse with her, teach her to ride a bike, and more.
‘I hope to be an advocate for people with disabilities and help them understand that, in my case, even if you get hit by a train you can still become and do what you set your mind to.’