Aviva Drescher

Aviva shares how she got involved with One Step Ahead and how she hopes she can inspire young amputees.

on Aug 20, 20120

Not many of us get a second chance. I did. I find my obligation now is, at the very least, to impart to other amputees the ease with which I find wearing a prosthesis.

In 2007, I met Amy Palmiero-Winters, mother of two, elite athlete, founder of the One Step Ahead Foundation and also an amputee. We met through our prosthetist Erik Schaffer. His talent, compassion, and dedication to creating the best prosthetics brought us together. Before Amy's accident she was passionate about running and riding motorcycles. One day while off from college she was riding her motorcycle and got hit by a car. She would not allow doctors to amputate her limb because of her passion for running. It was when Amy's friend said to her, "It's only a leg. It's not who you are," that Amy courageously amputated her leg. What truthful words her friend spoke. Today, Amy is an award winning renowned athlete.

With Amy, I found someone with the same perspective and attitude as myself, with the drive and passion to help other children gain the confidence to overcome any obstacle and follow their dreams. Although different, Amy and I were coming together for the same goal: making a difference in the lives of children with limb loss. Children who often pull away from fitness, socializing and living life to the fullest due to amputations.

While Amy spearheaded the physical fitness and athletic part of One Step Ahead, I would help children and teens navigate the emotional and social bumps they would endure. Amy was the athletic role model, while I was the Auntie Mame type.

159 comments
Lisaanndoug
Lisaanndoug

Oh Will is a six yo amputee and he wants u to know that you are his real life hero,

Lisaanndoug
Lisaanndoug

Aviva you are an inspiration and role model to my six yo grandson Will. Keep putting it out there. I know how brave you are. How many other amputees do u see on tv. Love u and God bless you. Your character speaks for itself not the co u keep.

JEM1
JEM1

This was a girls only trip. Bringing your hubby along was not a good choice. These ladies are without boundries. Some just act without thinking while drinking. I understand that you have issues without your hubby, but stay home next time or accept that your fears can be overcome and get on with your life. This show is over the top with women who have free spirits and will do anything to get attention. Ramona and Sonja are both uninhibited. Their behavior is so self centered and lacking any sort of good graces. I am shocked at their antics at times, but that is their way. Either accept or reject. You are more ladylike and really don't fit in too well.

 

Cassandra2
Cassandra2

Aviva, you and Lisa V. are my favorite housewives! You are so chic! I love to see what you're wearing each week, and you have such a dry sense of humor! Please don't let fame change you -- you are perfection.

HawaiiBlue
HawaiiBlue

Aviva, you are providing such a wonderful service for the One Step Ahead charity.  You are an inspiration to many amputees.  You are a very poised and classy woman.  I applaud you for being so candid about your prosthesis and also your panic disorder.  I have seen some of the previews for the upcoming episodes - it is horrible hearing Ramona yelling at you "take your Xanax" - see how she uses any known human flaw against a person.  She always knows how to hit below the belt.  Keep your head up because you are wonderful, real, and beautiful.

Gingit
Gingit

Aviva,hi I just want to know where is your name coming from,'cause I know "Aviva" from Israel,i was waiting for somebody to say some in the show,but i see is not going to happened. Can you please tell me?,thanks,

Claudia

orangeglow
orangeglow

Aviva seems like a nice person however, her phobia along with her separation anxiety having to do with her husband has really brought this season down. The actresses on the show should be able to travel and film with the other cast members freely but since she has so many restrictions I think she should be restricted by bravo in episodes and salary. Sorry just keeping it real.

belly
belly

Aviva,

As passionate as you are  about your charity, other people are just as passionate about animals. I understand why you are passionate about your charity because it effects your life, just as Sonja's dog affects her life. It is arrogant of you to think your passion should be more important than other's passions. Sonja's situation was life and death, and you shouldn't demand that she put your passions first. Even if it wasn't true, it's not right to be angry at someone who isn't as interested in your passion however much good it may do. If someone is shallow enough not to care, you can't change them. People can only live where there're at in the moment. Maybe they'll change, just as maybe you'll change and be more compassionate about animal causes.

 

kaybeecee
kaybeecee

Aviva,

I think it is so wonderful how you are so involved in helping children get prosthetic limbs by raising money through charitable donations.  I was very touched by seeing you with the young man who was getting his running legs.  It was truly beautiful.

What was not beautiful was your behavior at the lunch with Ramona and Sonja.   In spite of how worthy your charity is (and I'm sure it is especially close to your heart), it does not mean that everyone else MUST be as "connected" to it as you are.  It is NOT a charity if a donation or appearance by a friend is mandatory.  That imposed obligation is a tax on someone who may have other worthy causes they would prefer to spend their time and money in supporting.  I think you were out of line for yelling at Sonja for not coming. . . . she has the right to choose whether or not she wants to show up or make a donation.

Additionally, I feel like I need to say that my dog is like a child to me.  Yes, my husband and daughter were wonderful to me, but my puppy would lay down beside me and comforted me when I was going through radiation and chemotherapy as well. She was there for me when I was ill, and would not leave my side.  Unlike my husband and daughter, she couldn't console me with words. . .  but that was okay. . . she offered a heck of a lot more support than a lot of  the human beings who I thought would "be there" for me   Please do not discount people's attachment to their animals. Sonja was obviously distraught about her dog.  She didn't "owe" you an excuse, and honestly your statement about "a-holes" and "excuses" was really bordering on being almost cruel.  

You have something that you're obviously passionate about, and that's wonderful.  I hope you can continue in raising money for helping children who can't afford prosthetic limbs, but I also hope you can do it in a way where everyone else's choices are respected, whether or not you happen to believe they are worthy reasons or just lame "excuses".

 

Robyn-rlm
Robyn-rlm

I am for team Heather and think your Miami trip was the same as London.  You invited 3 out of 5, just because one of the ladies was already going doesn't mean it was not your intention to invite her.  You should be defending Heather.  She is up front and direct.  If she has issues she addresses them with that person at the time.  Ramona is just a train wreck that keeps things going.  Why would Heather invite someone on a trip to anywhere with the way Ramona has acted and treated her. 

 

I was very touched by Jake.  One step Ahead is a good thing and thank you for you work.

 

BTW, I guess you now know that Sonja's and Ramona's lack of appearance to your event was a day of getting "work" done to their bodies.

 

 

SBCheek
SBCheek

Why does no one change the laws in the USA on donated limbs?  It is legal to donate outside the USA, they take apart used limbs, send them out and they are assembled.  We have to buy NEW limbs in the USA.  That has to be very expensive for growing children and adults.

mizrosy
mizrosy

Aviva ... I send thank you's to your husband Reid for asking Mario .... Why are you getting involved?  Mario should stay out of the friction between the HW's.

 

Aviva ... you owe Heather a big .... one-on-one APOLOGY, because your interference was ... indefensible.  You allowed these to ladies to overpower you in your home.  So how they treated you about your charity was expected.

Margarita12
Margarita12

Aviva,

Think how much happier you would be if you gave up the "shoulds" in your iife.  This is something I learned a long time ago.  Stop thinking that people "should" do something.  After all, it is personal choice.  People have a right to make their own choices.  Attending a charity event is a choice and not an expectation.  Stop shoulding all over people, and don't should on yourself either!

dorothy.fedele
dorothy.fedele

Aviva,

 

I suffer from panic and anxiety disorder.  I completely understand what you go through.  If they haven't experienced it than they have no idea what its like.  They have no right to tell you to get through it or to tell you how to feel .  If its something you feel like you cant do, I wouldn't do it either.  A panic attack is horrible and hopefully they never have to know what its like. 

dorothyoz
dorothyoz

Aviva, I do like you alot but I do wish you would reconcile with Ramona. Sonja's excuse was lame but I do think there is more to the story, maybe editing? Why weren't you mad at LuAnn, she did not even know why she was there so you charity was not a big concern of hers! Please stay away from Hateful Heather, none of us really like the HOLLOW GIRL!!!

DJLoopsFruit
DJLoopsFruit

Aviva,as you already know i adore both you And Carole and what you do with this Charity is wonderful,keep up the good work you rock sister friend

auh
auh

Aviva, I really feel for you and the frustration you must be feeling towards both Sonja and the commenters that seem to think this was about a dog.

 

It wasn't. Sonja used a contemptible pivot away from contemptible behaviour.  That's it, that's all.

 

While I still don't  understand how incontinence is an appropriate topic of conversation at any meal, it was readily apparent, to anyone actually paying attention, that you only went from bemusement to anger when Sonja began using words like pride and embarrassment.  About her dog.

 

Pride and embarrassment.  The emotions that must be so integral to the self-esteem of the children you are trying to help.

 

I would have lost it.  You were far more gracious then I ever could have been. Kudos to you. 

Beyoncca
Beyoncca

I think I would much rather a Heather call me crazy in front of my husband then to be called "white trash" on national tv. I think Aviva's the biggest hypocrite ever.

jedinger7
jedinger7

Oh and who is taking care of the dog while Sonja is in barbados?  God forbid the pooch pees in her bed while she is gone and nobody notices.  

WilliamOfTroy
WilliamOfTroy

Aviva - As a pet owner, I have to say that I think you stink !  

carriek
carriek

I Think your wonderful !!  I believe thats what friends are for , to come to charity's other wise why are they your friends, it's not all about the nite life, it's about the charity !

mellowyellow
mellowyellow

Aviva, thanks for finding the courage to let those two losers have it. This whole dog thing from Sonja has become beyond believable and I don't like her using the dog's ill health and subsequent death as a way to avoid owning her behavior. Keep your distance from those two, and I'm looking forward to hearing you tell them more about the way you feel. They traipse around like they are queen bees, and really, why? Ramona has some money I guess, but money can't buy you cl-a-a-s-s. Sonja is friggin broke and her life is all a charade. I appreciate your stance on most things Aviva and am glad you're on the show.

Culbreth007
Culbreth007

Aviva, I have to admit that's have been a big fan of yours since this season started. You seemed to have a lot of class and manners...especially compared to some of the other housewives. However, I suppose it was a only a matter of time until your true colors were revealed. Was it really necessary to reprimand Ramona after she handed you a check for your charity? Was it necessary to scream at Sonja while she was crying over the potential death of her dog? I found your "lecture" to be completely classless and over-done. I know it would've been nice to have your friends there, but if they can't be there in person, I'm sure they are supporting you from a distance. And at the end of the day, the only important thing to get out of a charity event is the money that helps the children...which Ramona provided you with. I hope you watch this episode and realize how absolutely ridiculous you acted. I still think of you as my favorite NY housewife, but I hope you will think before you speak next time.

BarbGhig
BarbGhig

I see that some people think you handled Sonja and Ramona poorly, but what I "saw" was someone who was fed up with their antics! I'm really glad you blasted them (I think your message was to Ramona, too)! I'm also glad that Bravo has been helpful in bringing your cause to the public eye.

BJJett
BJJett

I can not believe Aviva!!  Only in the previews have I seen this but Aviva WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE to call Sonja & Ramona "white trash"???  I don't care WHAT they did. YOU my dear are not GOD!! YOU do NOT get to JUDGE others.  I hope will NOT watch anymore if you're on the show. Take your "high and mighty" ass & ALL your issues/fears somewhere else!!!!!!!!

hannah79
hannah79

You are a breath of fresh air!   Your charity for children who can't afford prosthesis I hope raised money.  Thank you so much for thinking about others.  When I saw which women

went to your charity -- I liked them better. You are beautiful and passionate.  You are so misunderstood.

HousewifeinNH
HousewifeinNH

I absolutely admire the effort you make to help children.  But, do you find it ironic that the women you champion and support the most couldn't be bothered to come and support you, while the women you admonish like children over matters that are none of your business graciously came to support your cause?  If Heather and Luann held a grudge, you would've only had Carole by your side. 

twix
twix

Your beautiful. Your charity was super. Made me cry.   Good for you!!!

twix
twix

Your beautiful. Very nice to watch on t.v. You have more class than anyone. Maybe you should hang out with Ramona and some of you might rub off on to her.   YEA RIGHT. Just a thought.

 

BAHAHAHAHAH

Diane69802
Diane69802

Aviva, Your devotion to your cause is sooo refreshing....tired of all the informercial girls trying to use the show to become Bethenney.  Good for You!

 

On the other hand, Aviva, you are stirring some trouble first with talking to Mario and Ramona about your feelings regarding the wine tasting....they weren't even upset until you got involved.  You also allowed Heather to continue talking when you knew Ramona had her ear in the conversation......that was mean....just as mean or meaner than calling Ramona crazy which by the way she is.

 

Check yourself!

 

TSan
TSan

This episode made me cry as well. The passion you have for your charity is wonderful. I am not as impressed with your behavior toward the ladies as I am with your charity. One minute you're annoyed with Ramona and the next you're defending her even when she is wrong. You talked about LuAnn in front of the women who didn't even bother to support you. At least Luann took the time to come! What is wrong with you? Heather would make a much better friend than Ramona or Sonja yet you jeapordized your friendship with her by defending them.

 

The other thing I didn't like is the way you keep bringing up the wine thing between Lu and Ramona. You were the one who started the whole mess with them because I don't think Ramona took it personally until you made a big deal about it. And instead of letting it go you continue to make it an issue. Annoying! I also don't understand why you kiss up to Ramona when it's clear that she's not into you like that. Sonja is selfish but that doesn't give you the right to chastise her for not coming. In your defense I think you were just disappointed. Of all the ladies you seem to click with S and R so for them not to show is like a slap in the face to you.

 

Overall, I like what you do for the charity, I like the way you are as a wife and mother and even the way you accept your dad for who he is. It's the way you interact with the other ladies that gets me annoyed with you. Maybe you're just a little awkward socially or you just have too much class for this show.

Lynda58
Lynda58

It was good to see you grow a spine and call out the Bobsey Twins for their flimsy excuses for not attending your event.  I was sorry that you swallowed hard and softened once Sonja sang a sad song with forced tears.  Really, now.  You had to know that they both played up a minor issue to get out of a charity event that didn't interest them.  Are you still on Ra's side?

malibutls
malibutls

I think what you are doing is wonderful.  But was it Sonja who introduced you to the charity.  That is what she is saying on her blog.  Just a little confused.

mm811
mm811

Aviva - your interaction with Heather was "indefensible"... how could you side with Ramona??  Shows a fundamental lack of judgment on your part.  I think you owe Heather an apology.

NeutronBomb
NeutronBomb

Aviva, you are inspirational! I am so glad you joined this show purely to help your Charity and give us viewers insight into the Amputee Community. All the other ladies only joined this show to promote their companies or wine or shapewear!

YouGottaBeKiddingMe
YouGottaBeKiddingMe

Jake for President!

That amazing courage and charisma of his came right through the camera and into our hearts. 

Rita-la
Rita-la

 @JEM1 Well... except for the fact that the impetus behind the trip was the fact that Russ would be there. And that Aviva made it known at the first mention of the trip that she could only come if Reid accompanied her. And that all the cameramen are, well... men. And the staff of the house is mostly male. It's not like they could have sunbathed in the nude since "it's just us girls."

 

Carol did say that she knew her use of the words "girls' trip" was going to come back and bite her. For her, Russ was the reason for being there in the first place. Honestly, since Carol was the host of the trip and she invited Reid, who are the other ladies to complain?

HawaiiBlue
HawaiiBlue

 @orangeglowtry to understand what she has experienced as a child when she lost her leg in an traumatic accident.  An event like that shapes the way you react the rest of your life.  Unfortunately she has a panic disorder that prevents her from traveling.  We should applaud her for how well adjusted she is. 

 

Sunburstsgirl
Sunburstsgirl

@belly Exactly. Not to sound mean, as I love children, but a dog dying is priorty over an event. I know chuldren need the even to get a leg, but the dog was dying. Sorry, but no question that losing a life is higher prioity than enhancing one. Again, love kids and feel for them, but losing a life is horrible.

NeutronBomb
NeutronBomb

 @kaybeecee The problem wasn't Aviva not being a "Dog Person". The problem was Sonja never apologized! Watch the episode back again! Sonja was being flippant about the whole situation: joking about her "Gay Interns" in her bed...and her dog being "proud" and embarrassed about wearing diapers. Sonja was being "joke-y" about the whole thing.

 

If Sonja said: "I am sorry I didn't attend Aviva, but my dog was very sick", then I would have respected her and felt Aviva was a bully. But if you watch the episode back, Sonja never apologized...she just rambled on about her dog and was cracking jokes about the dog and her interns for laughs and more airtime.

merin99
merin99

 @dorothyoz don't overstate.  I like Heather and find her to be the lady with the most integrity on the show.  It is okay if YOU don't like her.  Saying "none of us" is just stupid. 

Lin8888
Lin8888

 @jedinger7

 I guess you gotta love a woman who seriously comes up with the excuse that her dog is humiliated because he pees in the bed.  Not believe her, of course, but at least appreciate her creativity.  It's so ridiculous that it's funny.

Beyoncca
Beyoncca

 @jedinger7

 Hopefully not the incompetent assistant/intern that forgot to give Milo (the dog) his pill in the first place.

katebreadandwater
katebreadandwater

 @WilliamOfTroy We would feel sorry for her if she were true to her words.  But she picks and chooses when to use this as her excuse.  

Glimmer88
Glimmer88

@BJJett Did you notice how her kid was terrified of the carousel?

katebreadandwater
katebreadandwater

 @HousewifeinNH Exactly! I don't know why she continues to support them and stick up for them every week. It seems like there may be a shift soon though.

rebecca_959804
rebecca_959804

 @mm811

 I agree! Also, tell me that she didn't see Ramona eavesdropping. I was embarrassed for Heather, she didn't deserve any of that crap. I really liked Aviva at first, now I'm just over her bullshit, every week she's stirring up trouble where there isn't any.

MiMis
MiMis

@HawaiiBlue Sorry but that doesn't give Aviva the right to throw a temper tantrum every time she feels slighted. She yells & calls names then makes no apologies. PLEASE! I feel for the fact that Aviva went through so much at such a young age but she seriously needs to get over herself!

kaybeecee
kaybeecee

 @NeutronBomb I certainly agree with you that Sonja did not handle this conversation with Aviva very wisely--she should have immediately apologized instead of launching into the story about her sick dog.  Her attitude probably provoked Aviva unnecessarily. However,  Sonja was pre-warned by Carole before Aviva came that she was very upset that Ramona and Sonja pulled a no-show.  Sonja was probably feeling very defensive about her reasons for not attending because 1) her dog is her baby and he was obviously suffering; and 2) Sonja knows how Aviva has a tendency to go into "lecture" mode.  And sure enough, Aviva started making her speech about it, and Sonja was having none of it.  Sonja did apologize near the end of their confrontation, but at that point it was far too late.

Could it had been handled better by Sonja?  Absolutely, yes. She does come across as self-involved, especially this season.   However, as far as Aviva goes, I don't know if attacking people and belittling their "excuses" is really the best way to make a point. It rubbed me the wrong way.  Both ladies were upset, so hopefully they picked up the pieces. . . . moved on to fight about other things (from future episode clips, it looks like they do). 

 

Glimmer88
Glimmer88

@Milica @WilliamOfTroy So everyone that loves their pet should never go away on vacation? I bet if her dog was very sick she wouldn't go off and leave it but if he seemed to be in good condition then she felt ok to go. ( I am a huge animal lover btw and give to 4 animal charities every month so this isn't coming from someone who just sorta cares about animals. ) I'm just trying to say that you can't expect someone to never go away and leave their animals for a few days.