School was hard with lots of bullying and fights, but I made do and that’s what made me into the woman I am now.  I started competing in swimming when I was nine.  I was the first person with cerebral palsy to go to the Seoul Paralympics in 1988.  I won gold and silver medals there.  Then in 1992 I went to Barcelona and broke some world records.  Later I received the Queen’s Birthday OAM for services for sport.  I’ve done lots of things like coaching swimming, building a house, studying small business and art, opening a shop and creating art.  My motto is “Never say no to me.  Let me try and then I’ll know whether I can or not, and if I can’t do it your way, then I’ll find a way of doing it my way.”

I’m very happy doing my own art now.  It’s helped me work through losing my Mum.  I won’t part with those paintings.  I paint in my home studio or at a community studio and occasionally have an exhibition.  I experiment with lots of different styles and use of colour.  I prefer to use my fingers or other tools, not often paintbrushes.  There are often blue and water themes in my paintings, not surprising given my swimming history.

The Lives We Lead Worklife has been funded by the Department of Communities, Disability Services.
Logo for Disability WA Resources link