After you read, consider this: Can you donate a few dollars to make a difference in Sara's life? What little bit can you give that would mean the absolute world to this friend? If every deviant that reads this can give just a few dollars, we can help Sara reconnect with the world!
Donations can be sent to PayPal firstname.lastname@example.org
Or mailed to:
Sara Baker Trust Fund
8220 Old Redwood Highway
Cotati, CA 94931
One year ago, our fellow deviant Sara Baker AKA Glory was on her way her way to school. Sara was 19-years-old at the time, a college student, happily in love with her boyfriend of a few years, making art and having fun.
As she was merging onto a highway, a reckless driver tried to pass her on the right and hit her. The bump sent her flying out into traffic causing her to lose control of her car. She tried to come to a safe stop and pull to the side of the road, but something when wrong in the last moment and her car was sent flipping over into a ditch on the side of the road, bursting into flames.
Passers by came to her aid, trying to break the windows to get to Sara, throwing mud on the flaming car to try and keep the flames from her. Miraculously, she had no injuries from the accident. She is taken to the hospital to recover, likely to wake up with a really bad headache.
However, in the hospital, Sara was struck by another attack, silent and devastating: she suffered a stroke.
Sara is now what's called "locked-in," a condition which allows her to feel her whole body but without being able to move voluntary muscles, with the exception of her eyes. She is a quadriplegic that can feel everything: every itch, every fly that lands, every pain.
Sara will never draw again; not the way she used to. Every day she lives attached to tubes that feed her and help her breath. After 11 months in the hospital she is finally home, but life will never be back to normal for her. She requires constant care, and she is obviously very limited in what she can do for hours and hours.
She's a fighter though. She's gotten back some mobility in her head and lips. She is working on strengthening control of her vocal chords and working on gaining more control of her tongue so she can eventually breath through her mouth and eat again. When she coughs, her legs move up to her chest.
Sara communicates with her mother, nurses, and her few visitors by using a computer that types based on her eye movements. As the computer scrolls through rows of letters, she looks up when she wants to select a row. The inferred light on the glasses reflects off the white of her eyes to make the selection. Then she waits for the selector to get to the letter she wants, and then she starts over until she has spelled out what she wants.
This video shows how it works. (Tinyurl'd it as the original link kept breaking)
I went to see Sara a few weeks ago and we talked for hours. It was strange because I was used to talking to her online, and in some ways, talking through the computer was kind of similar (all be it slower). We had a few laughs and it was great to see the same funny, smart kid was still in there. But there were sad parts too, like when she told me how much she misses making art. I asked her if it hurt and she told me, "Always."
Most of the time, she's in good spirits, keeping herself busy with lots of movies and her physical therapy, but lately things have been getting a lot harder for her. She's suffered some emotional set backs in the last week, and she is starting to be more isolated. She is lonely a lot because she is really disconnected from everyone.
The technology she has doesn't allow her to access the web in a way that works for someone in her condition. The technology she needs is, as you can imagine, very expensive. Cyberlink will not only allow Sara to get online, it also has means for her to make digital art. Sara's mom is a single mom and she takes the brunt of Sara's care like a true hero. She is just making ends meet with the money required for Sara's care on top of the rent and other everyday expenses. She cannot afford to get this technology on her own.
I am determined to make a difference for this brave girl. She does not have to be alone in herself. There IS technology out there to reconnect her to her friends. We HAVE to do something to help.
Please, if you've read this far (thank you) spread the word! Fav this, post a link to it in your journal, tell people you know outside of DA. It only takes a little bit by a lot of people to really make a difference.
Please let me know if you donate, I'd like to try to keep track of what we raise. So far, her online friends at the web forum Tower of Time have raised $1090, but so much more is needed. Please help if you can, and if you cannot afford even just a dollar, then please pass this along to everyone you know.
You can follow Sara's story on the blog that her friends and family update here: sarastatus.blogspot.com/
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