A SCOTS student who was left paralysed from the waist down after falling backwards on a promenade wall is fundraising for a new “chariot”.
Rosie Sinclair has been a paraplegic after breaking her back when she fell off a wall at the popular Portobello Beach in Edinburgh in April last year.
The 29-year-old University of Edinburgh student had been sitting on the wall and fell backwards when she twisted around to stand up.
The sheer drop caused her to smash her back on cobblestones, causing injury to her spinal cord.
Rosie had four operations to repair her spinal cord but sadly developed Functional Neurological Disorder (FND).
The condition causes the brain and affected part of the body to stop communicating, leading to paralysis.
Last month, Rosie was finally allowed to return home after spending almost a year in different hospitals.
She is now trying to raise £3,865 to buy a lightweight wheelchair, that she refers to as her “chariot”, after dislocating her arm when using a heavy 19kg NHS chair.
Speaking today, Rosie, who is studying a PHD in English Literature, said: “I was sitting on the end of the wall, lent backwards and fell off onto my back on the cobblestones.
“It felt like I’d fallen onto a balloon and it had popped under me. It hurt a lot, but I could still move my legs and stand up then, so my friend and I said no to an ambulance.
“I would say where I fell off the corner is broken, the concrete has broken away.
“I would like to see it get fixed so this doesn’t happen to anybody else.
“I drove home and went to bed. But the pain got worse and by morning my feet were numb and I couldn’t pee, and I also had a large swelling on my back.
“My sister, who’s a GP, advised me to go to A and E, and I did.
“I walked in, laid down on a stretcher and never got up again because by then my spinal cord had been damaged by the swelling from my injury.”
Rosie has now set up her own Just Giving page to buy a custom made light chair wheelchair after struggling with her NHS one.
She said: “Due to my disability I now use a wheelchair full time, and the one provided for me by the NHS is not suitable for my needs.
“It’s so heavy, 19kgs, that I dislocated my right shoulder whilst pushing within 48 hours of being home from hospital.
“The armrests and footplates get in the way, and the backrest isn’t supportive enough for my compromised core.
“I have been really struggling and unable to leave the house.”
Rosie has now had a private consultation to get a personally made wheelchair that will support her back and allow her to get her life back.
Rosie spent nine weeks at the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh following her accident.
She was transferred to the nearby Astley Ainslie Hospital in June 2020 where she spent nine months there before being finally allowed home in February this year.
Rosie had to move from her home in Newington, Edinburgh after it was no longer suitable for her wheelchair.
It took seven months for her to be suitably housed to her new home by the City of Edinburgh Council.
However, she is still unable to use her kitchen and relies on carers four times a day.
Shortly before the accident Rosie had cofounded the Edinburgh Mask Makers project, and continued to run it from my hospital bed.
During this time they made 13,000 free masks for key workers and those in need.
Rosie said: “It gave me focus and perspective in a time when I could have been looking only inwards at my own fear.”
Rosie’s fundraising page currently sits at just over £3,500 since being set up yesterday.