From Cali, with Love: Ryann Mason and Ryen Reed

Despite all the storms and complications that life has thrown at Ryann Mason and Ryen Reed, they have pushed through and have accomplished so much! But a little something missing…

Before they met, they were both successful on their own; Ryann Mason was already a registered nurse, and a well-known content creator, while Ryen Reed was already a super active handcycling athlete aiming for more and more in her professional athlete life. Fast forward to 2023, and these two amazing women are in love, living together in a little beach house with palm trees in the front yard somewhere on the coast of San Diego with a cute little yapping chihuahua named Oli.

To get the story of how they met, we have to rewind back to 2020, right after Ryann was crowned Ms. Wheelchair Virginia, and her story was all over social media. Ryen, of course, saw it and decided to try to get in contact with Ry. In Ryann Mason’s own words—She (Ryen Reed) was shocked to see another wheelchair female, gay wheelchair user named “Ryan.”the coincidences were too many to let the opportunity pass by! They soon became friends, and by the beginning of 2021, and after countless hours of Facetiming every day, they decided that it was time to meet each other in person. A month later, they were dating, and the rest is history.

You could say that it was meant to be; once they saw each other, there was no question they needed to be close to one another. When Ryen Reed visited Ryann in Virginia, she only got a one-way ticket. She stayed there until last summer, when they decided to establish themselves in beautiful San Diego, California. Moving from your State for someone you love is challenging. It involves starting over in a whole new city and environment, far from what we know and far from our friends and family. It has to be one of the biggest acts of love! Especially when it involves moving across the country by car which means being trapped in a car for 2 weeks with your partner and a little chihuahua.

So, of course, when we saw their love story, we wanted to know more about their relationship! Make sure to read our conversation with Ryann Mason.


Motion Composites: What did you think the first time that you met Ryen?

Ryann Mason: I was totally in shock that this person was real. It is just because I have never developed a relationship with someone that I was seeing through a screen, and then here they are –  a real human! It was totally overwhelming but in the best way possible!

MC: What is the thing that you love the most about Ryen?

RM: Probably how ridiculously stubborn and determined she is! Ryen was born with Cerebral Palsy, and while growing up, she was determined to play able-bodied sports, like baseball, and she was doing it! She did not know much about adaptive sports until she was in her twenties, but that has never stopped her.

Before Ryen entered my life, I used to sleep late and live off energy drinks and candy, so she has greatly influenced me. Since I’ve known her, she has been training and keeping herself healthy, which has paid off; she has continued getting gold medals and ranking insanely high in her sport. She brings out the best in me, and I am so grateful for her!

MC: What do you think is your biggest strength as a couple?

RM: We are both very similar, and we understand the struggles that come with our mobility limitations. Although our disabilities are vastly different and our experiences are completely different, Ryen is just somebody who gets it. I don’t have to say anything. For example, she already knows that the four people we’ve passed in the grocery store have been staring this whole time, and she’s probably already given them a look or waved or something.

It’s little things like that that I don’t have to explain. She just knows. Having that shared experience has really been a strength for both of us. Also, we both love disability advocacy and sharing what our lives are truly like while trying to educate the public about what living with a disability is.

MC: What would you recommend to other people with disabilities who are in a long-distance relationship and are afraid of all the ups and downs of moving from their State?

RM: This is the first time I am dating someone in a wheelchair like me, and I understand that it is scary to look at the future and try to rethink our mobility concerns. We were trying to be reasonable and think first of accessibility, and how to navigate through it in the cities we were trying to move into.

We tried to think about what was making the most sense and find not just an accessible city but also what things we wanted to be close to. In our case, we wanted to be closer to larger organizations like the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CFA) to continue practicing adaptive sports. We also wanted to be close to communities familiar with working with people with disabilities in case we needed help. Of course, there were a LOT more logistics than I was used to, but it was so worth it! Obviously, the bigger the area, the better since, the larger the city, the more accessible it was.

Another thing that I recommend is to check the website of the city you want to move to or visit. Most have an accessibility section. In my case, the California website was very helpful, with a step-by-step guide on what to do if you moved there. Finally, I recommend calling the city if you have any concerns or questions.

MC: Talking about wheelchairs. How do you feel about your Apex C? What do you like most about it?

RM: I LOVE my Apex Carbon! When I was fitted for my first wheelchair over 5 years ago, my ATP was unfortunately very unfamiliar with my disability (Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome). I didn’t know anything about wheelchairs then and ended up receiving a chair that was SO heavy my shoulders would dislocate each time I tried to lift it. A friend of mine gifted me my current Apex Carbon chair, and I was amazed! Finally, I had a wheelchair that was light enough that I could unload and load it independently! I was able to return to my career as a hospital nurse.

The Carbon Fiber design is PERFECT, allowing me to keep my independence as well as keeping my hypermobile joints safe. I recommend the Apex Carbon to all my EDS patients because it has changed my life.

MC: Any last comments?

RM: We are really excited for the future. On my side, I am back to being a hospital nurse, and we are really happy about it! For Ryen, we are super eager for her upcoming season! We are also planning on putting down more roots in San Diego, We hope to get back into advocacy now that I’ll be working in a hospital again!

We want to thank Ryann and Ryen for sharing their amazing love story with us! We wish you both the happiest Valentine’s Day and all the love in the world!


As for you, dear reader, I hope this story inspires you to get yourself out there if you are single (you never know what can happen) and if you are a couple – keep reminding that special person how much they mean to you! Happy Valentine’s Day!

About Miriam Aguilar Garza

Digital Marketing Specialist at Motion Composites

Miriam holds a Bachelor's Degree in International Business from Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León (Mexico). She is passionate about writing, reading, traveling, and giving a voice to people in the wheelchair community.