“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl; but whatever you do, you have to keep moving forward,” says Sinead Johnson’s Facebook cover photo.
It might me a meme appropriated from feelmylove.org, but it certainly personifies Sinead’s defiance of her cerebral palsy.
Sinead, 27, says her long hair is “annoying” and, come March 14-18, it will be snipped in aid of the Leukaemia Foundation’s World’s Greatest Shave initiative.
“I’m going to have a wig made out of it,” she says, “for a sick kid going through chemotherapy.
“I’ve been thinking about doing it for years, but I’ve chickened out in the past.”
Sinead works at Caringa – ‘a not-for-profit, charity organisation that supports and empowers people living with a disability’ – in Grafton.
About four years ago, she wrote a children’s picture book (illustrated by a Caringa employee) titled Wanda and her Magic Sticks.
‘Wanda is a person just like you and me,’ she writes, but Wanda cannot walk without the sticks.
‘Just like Wanda, these sticks are magic. With the flick of the wrist, Wanda can make flowers bloom, birds sing, or turn a frown upside down!’
A stranger soon warns Wanda not to climb a hill, fearing she might hurt herself. However, Wanda decides that it is the stranger who has the problem, not her; and waves her magic sticks to enlighten him.
He changes his thinking and says: ‘You are no different to anybody else Wanda.’
Together they climb the hill, atop of which they share the view; in fact, the stranger says, ‘I am very tired now; I am not sure I could have done it without your help Wanda.’
To date, Sinead has raised over $900 for the Leukaemia Foundation.
People who would like to sponsor Sinead visit her personal sponsor page here