Watch my video to gain a flavour of Sarah-Jane and then scroll down to read the words she has written.
Her words come from somewhere deep inside and so are very descriptive of her situation and how illness can leave a person struggling in a world where wheelchair access is an afterthought.
To make a donation, please visit Sarah-Jane’s GoFundMe page.
This is the text Sarah has written for the crowdfunding and is on the GoFundMe website.
My name is Sarah-Jane, and I am looking to raise the funds to buy an ‘all terrain’ powered wheelchair – a Trekinetic GTE.
Like so many of us, I’ve spent most of my life taking so many things for granted. I never thought twice about going for a walk on the beach, meandering through the woods to see the bluebells, laying under the stars, or connecting to an ancient oak tree. I never thought twice about being out in nature, as it was as easy to me as breathing or digestion.
I think it’s an inherent part of being human to take things for granted, unless we are unlucky enough to reach a point where our bodies fail, and life suddenly hurtles out of reach; then the shutters fall, and isolation becomes the norm.
My health has been on a slippery slope for many years. I’ve always managed it quite well, but over the last decade the cracks have grown wider, and my body just won’t do the things I want it to do. My mind is still vibrant, and I still have dreams, but these days my life is confined to the pavement; going off road or into uncharted terrain, or even being spontaneous, is out of my reach as my body simply cannot do what I would like it to do.
I have been a wheelchair user for quite a few years, but my current wheelchair is struggling, and she just can’t get me to those places that now reside only in the depths of my consciousness. I find myself feeling a deep sense of loss at the life I’m not living and a sense of grief for the life I cannot have. Many of my dreams are gathering dust as I’ve had to put them aside, but as time has progressed, they’ve grown further and further out of reach.
Every day I feel disconnected and isolated from the world. The more my health deteriorates, the more I long to be able to do the simple things: being in the woods listening to trees whispering, watching the crops sway in the fields as the birds soar overhead or even being able to connect to the power of the sea. I don’t want to live on the periphery, I want to live my life as best as I can, spending time outside to feed my soul and nurture my spirit.
I long to re-immerse myself in nature as that’s where I feel most alive. It’s where I find my inspiration to write and be creative, and I want to do more of that now. I want to live life ‘off road’, taking myself into unchartered terrain and exploring new limits.
I want to feel life has potential, not limitation and restriction. I want to make the most of everyday, to build my confidence and to explore the possibilities beyond the four walls of my life. I have so much I still want to do, but I need a suitable wheelchair to help me with that – one that is reliable, sturdy and can consistently get me places that are currently out of my reach.
That’s where I need your love and help. I need to raise the money to buy a new ‘all-terrain’ wheelchair. It’s a lot of money, and I realise the enormity of what I’m asking – it has taken me a great deal of time and energy to muster up the confidence to ask, but I have to put this out to trust and see what transpires as I need your help. I don’t want my life to end at the pavement anymore. If you feel able to help, then please make a donation … and please feel free to share with others. No amount is too small as I know it comes with love.
In case you were wondering, I have a range of health issues, most notably Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, Postural Tachycardia Syndrome and Complex Regional Pain Syndrome which have caused multi-systemic issues and other associated conditions.
The Trekinetic GTE is ‘all terrain’ and is comfortable with mud, wet grass, uneven terrain, potholes, hills, sand, snow … and also just as good for me to get around central London to my multiple hospital appointments.
I am at the top of the waiting list for another assistance dog so I long to be able to take him/her out independently. As a result, I need to get the Trekinetic ordered as soon as possible as there is a 12-week lead time on orders. I have been fully assessed for this wheelchair and the cost is for the wheelchair adapted to suit my specific and individual needs.
When I trialled the Trekinetic GTE, for the first time in about ten years, I was able to travel through a field of wildflowers and it was so uplifting and invigorating to touch the swaying flowers and let each one dance across my palm – I felt truly alive and full of hope.
Please help me reclaim my zest for life.