After you've lost all feeling in the lower half of your body, they don't simply stick you in a wheelchair and roll you out the door. It took 71 days in rehab to transform me from a bed-bound invalid to the fully-functional individual you see not standing before you. You have to relearn pretty much everything. For example, putting your pants on as a wheelchair-bound person is a whole different process. You can't put them on one leg at a time. You get in bed, put your pants on both legs, and then slide them up as far as you can, which is to about mid-thigh. Then you roll to one side and pull them up to your hip, then roll to the other side and do the same thing. You usually have to do this a couple of times to get them up all the way, rolling back and forth like a pill bug.
Even putting on shoes isn't simple: You have to grab your leg and put your ankle over your knee, put the shoe on, put your leg back down, and repeat. It's like Riverdance in slow motion. Which is about the only way Riverdance could get any worse.
You never miss your legs more than when you're watching a pair squandered on absolute bullshit.
But it's not all terrible. You do get learn a bunch of awesome new stuff.
We had a special class in rehab, called a para-chair class, where you learn how to do practical stuff like get down stairs. The way I do it is to line up on a set of stairs backward, grab onto the handrail with one hand, grab the opposite wheel with the other hand, and roll down them one at a time. But that's not all you learn; the rest of the class plays out like a third grader's dream. For example, one of the requirements was learning how to pop and hold a wheelie. This wasn't (just) for doing sick donuts in the parking lot -- it's something you use on a daily basis. You have to do it constantly to get around cracks, bumps, and curbs, because sometimes there's not a curb-cut available.
You also learn how to do 360s, and there's even a cripple obstacle course: five spins left, five spins right, and once around the whole gym in a continuous wheelie without touching your castors down. So sure, you may never walk again, but who needs it when you get to be half stunt bike?
So no stairs, but apparently, kickass homemade bike ramps are still on the table.