I have changed names three times in my life.
I wonder if Mom knew how apt it would be when she named me Tracy Lian Sinclair on 19 October 1969. Tracy, I discovered later, means brave.
On 9 December 1995, I swapped Sinclair for Todd, which means fox, when I married my first love. Cunning appeared second nature after my spinal cord injury wrought havoc in our marriage.
In time, I learnt to be brave.
I never liked my second name, until now.
Lian, is of Chinese origin, and it means lotus flower.
On 13 April 1998, my lotus flower life’s journey germinated in the muddy sediment of a swamp of disability, when an accident left me paralysed from the neck down. By the grace of God, with the love, care and support of my son, Chad, my parents, family, friends and the Lowveld community, I was pushed up through the murky water of quadriplegia to seek the light.
Becoming paralysed has to be the most terrifying dragon I’ve ever faced, and my memoir, Brave Lotus Flower Rides the Dragon tells the story of how I tamed it enough to live with. I wish I could say that I’d slayed it, but taming it comes close. Also, Dragon NaturallySpeaking software enables me to write without hands.
30 April 2016 was the day that I finally blossomed when I said, “I do” to my Sexy Legs and became Tracy Heine.
With each and every earth angel who has made a difference in my life, along with Roy Vernon Heine’s deep and genuine love for me, I have been transformed into the ultimate Brave Lotus Flower, ready to ride any dragon that life chooses to throw my way.
I may need a wheelchair to get around but it is most certainly not what defines me as a woman.
Motto: Why Walk When You Can Soar.
Tracy Todd – The Brave Lotus Flower