(DOUG JESSOP – UTAH CARING STORIES – ABC4 NEWS – SALT LAKE CITY, UT) Dancing with the Stars has been on ABC4 for years. Did you know that a number of Utahns have been on the show? In tonight’s Utah Caring Stories, Doug Jessop, visits with dancer Ashleigh Di Lello about her medical miracle.
Please note that this is an excerpt from a twenty plus minute, Jessop’s Journal interview. You can see the complete interview by CLICKING HERE.
Ashleigh told me; “My husband (Ryan Di Lello) and I are most well known as the only married couple on So You Think You Can Dance We’ve also performed on Dancing with the Stars, Ellen and then we went on to Broadway and headlined Broadway Shows.”
What you might not know about dancer, Ashleigh Di Lello, is what she was told at the age of thirteen.
“I’ll never forget a particular moment that came to define my life as I had the doctor come in. looked at me, took a deep breath, and said “you need to accept that you are not going to live past your teenage years. You’ll never dance again, never had kids, never have a normal life.” I looked down and mustered the greatest courage I could have at that time and looked up and said, “I don’t accept this”.
Ashleigh continued; “It was such a defining moment that I’ve drawn from. Because I accepted right then that I would not allow other people limitations to become mine. I knew that I was coming into the greatest fight of my life, but I decided that rather than try to not die, that I was going to put my energies and efforts into living.”
ASHEIGH – I was out of dance from thirteen almost fourteen until I was twenty.
DOUG – From there, six years later you were on national television doing what you love.
ASHEIGH: I would dance in my mind. And I would go through my routines and I would like I was classed. I felt it so much in my heart. I remember laying there in tears. Not from despair, but from joy, of what one day I planned to experience again. I have no doubt that was so pivotal in me being able to come back the way I did. Because for those six years I was patterning within my brain and body the feeling of dance without being physically being able to do it.
DOUG – I’ve got to ask, do you have any children? ASHLEIGH – I do. I have one. She is a beautiful girl. She’s six and a half. My Sofia. She’s my miracle.
I strongly feel that “stories have power”. Chances are that if you are going through something, that someone else probably has as well. The shared experiences we humans have can help each other. That my friend makes the point that stories “help us understand each other.”
You don’t have to agree with everyone, but in my opinion, if people would take more time getting to knowing more about others and where they are coming from, we just might find out that we have more similarities than differences.
Jessop’s Journal is something special when it comes to broadcast news. I have the honor of being able to do longer in-depth interviews that you don’t normally see with people from all walks of life.
A big shout out goes to my collaborator, Ed Wilets , who does a great job as my videographer/editor for all my stories. I invite you to watch each episode of Jessop’s Journal at www.ABC4.com/Journal and share these stories with your friends and neighbors. Your feedback is always welcome at DJessop@abc4.com
You can also see my positive business profiles called “Utah Success Stories” every Sunday in the ABC4 News at 10 p.m. or online at www.ABC4.com/Success
These stories deserve to be told. These are Utah Caring Stories. I’m Doug Jessop , ABC4 News.