Jack Fowler has revealed he struggled to walk after being left “completely paralysed”.
The 27-year-old originally appeared on the 2018 series of Love Island UK.
More recently, the Londoner competed on Love Island Games, winning the spin-off show alongside his girlfriend Justine Ndiba.
Taking to Instagram on Monday evening, Jack shared a video of himself struggling to walk a number of years ago.
The Love Island star wrote: “Hey people. So this post kind of took me a couple years to post because I wasn’t too sure if it was something I wanted you all to know.”
“But I think just reflecting over the last couple months and how far I’ve come gave me some sort of courage to post & to hopefully give motivation to others.”
“This was me a few years ago, with early signs of Transverse Myelitis. An extremely rare condition which we think stemmed from me having Meningitis a few months before.”
“I woke up one morning and couldn’t feel my leg,” Jack revealed. “Around 5 days after this video, I was completely paralysed down my left side with complete numbness down my right side – caused by inflammation across my spinal cord, blocking my central nervous system.”
“With getting worse each couple hours/days and unable to move, life became completely different.”
“I needed help with everything. From cutting my food & eating to getting dressed & undressed. One of the most scariest times in my life.”
“With weeks of tests and seeing the best doctors in the country, I still had no diagnoses due to the rarity of it. Which left me in the dark with what was happening to my body and also if I would ever recover.”
“Without going into loads and loads of details, I started treatment and made a 100% recovery that same year,” Jack explained.
“It took time and patience to get back to normal but with the love and support of my family & friends, I did it. I was a very lucky case as some people never recover.”
“Recently I done Love Island Games which I know a lot of you haven’t seen over in the UK, but it was very challenging, games focused with a lot of high intense competing.”
“And a big part of me doing it was to prove to myself that I could do it, even after what I had gone through.”
Jack continued: “Also, a massive part of learning how to DJ back then was so I could keep my mind focused on something while sat down… with my hands becoming able again, it allowed me to learn how to mix.”
“So really this post is more of a motivational one.”
“Everyone has dark times in life & sometimes you don’t see how you’ll get through.”
“But keep going. Keep focused. And don’t quit. And when you do, you’ll look back and realise how far you come❤️.”
A host of Love Island stars took to the comments section to shower Jack with praise for sharing his story.
The 27-year-old’s girlfriend Justine wrote: “Your ‘why’ was truly so admirable and so inspiring and I can’t express how even more proud of you it all made me! So many much needed takeaways from this message that we’re all thankful and so proud of you for! One of the strongest people I know! 🤎💪🏾🙏🏾.”
Josh Denzel penned: “Bounced back in a different way!!!! Can’t keep him down 👏🏾👊🏾.”
Meanwhile, Love Island UK and Games host Maya Jama commented: “🙌🙌 and you smashed it! What a journey 🙏🏽.”