Our Stories

My life with Spina Bifida, Hi there I’m Zoe

Zoe's Story

Life with a disability can be very challenging at times and being couped up in my home for too long drives me crazy. I wish I could be more independent, but I do what I can. WLC gets me out and allows me to meet people and learn new things – it’s been part of my life for so long now that I can’t imagine life without it.

I was born with Spina Bifida where the spine and spinal cord doesn’t develop properly in the womb and Hydrocephalus, a complication with a build-up of fluid on the brain. I remember endless hospital trips and alternating between adapted wheelchairs, self-propelled trikes and callipers. Despite this, I was quite active at school and loved outdoor activities in particular archery and the 100 metre races in my wheelchair. Sadly, an operation I later had to help fuse my spine left me less able to propel myself in a wheelchair so it confined me to a motorised chair.

I found this paralayis of being in a motorised chair very frustrating. When I graduated from school I came to White Lodge Centre and that was now 22 years ago which I can’t quite believe!

It has changed so much in that time but it’s always been such a friendly and fun place. I particularly love the socialising element of coming here, mixing with the staff and my friends. I also really enjoy the activities, especially cooking, the make-up sessions, and the craft they do in the amazing art studio. I also recently got a standing ovation at this year’s Quizoke where I sang. It’s such a special place for me and so many others, please support our appeal and help Keep Us Together and donate here.

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