Louis Mayfield | Whyalla News

As a follow up to our story about locals attending Youth Parliament, The Whyalla News recently received a letter from Zia Westerman.

Zia and her twin Cyanne were given the chance to attend Youth Parliament in Adelaide, while also enjoying other activities. The twins were both born with Muscular Dystrophy, but have continued to live life to the fullest.

Below is the letter submitted by Zia, detailing  the twins’ experiences during the trip.

“All my life I have wanted to be accepted and given the chance to have a normal life without having to worry about whether or not I have to be home to go to the toilet or to follow a strict schedule for when my carers come to help me.

The week of Youth Parliament that all changed. I cannot thank Gail Rostig, Eddie Hughes and Lyn Breuer enough for this amazing opportunity and experience. It is a wonderful feeling when people give you the opportunity to experience life without barriers.

Cyanne and I had the amazing opportunity to watch Youth Parliament in action and it has been the best week ever! It was a very formal event that left me feeling very underdressed for the occasion.

The debates were about serious matters such as caged eggs, firearms and gay defence, plus more. However, you couldn’t go throughout the day without a few laughs.

For me this trip wasn’t just about Youth Parliament. It was about experiencing life as a normal adult, to grow as a person and to have the freedom of spending time away from home.

Cyanne and I had two carers with us 24 hours a day, which is something we do not have at home, and it gave me the opportunity do what I wanted.

We roamed the streets, went shopping and even had the pleasure of having tea with Gail on Tuesday night, and then Kelly Vincent and her personal assistant on Thursday for lunch at Parliament House.

Wednesday morning Cyanne and I had an appointment with Les Brazier’s to discuss our needs for our new van and then we went to Elizabeth City Centre and shopped til we dropped.

What made it remarkable was we didn’t have to go back to the hotel once to go to the toilet as Elizabeth City Centre has installed the first Changing Place in South Australia.

It made me feel like a normal human being without the worries of making sure to be home at a certain time for the toilet.

A massive thank you to the people for making this trip happen, especially Gail Rostig, Eddie Hughes and Lyn Breuer.

And a big thank you to my wonderful and completely crazy carers who had to put up with us. It would not have been nearly as fun without you guys.

I lost count how many times I cried with laughter on a daily basis. Now sitting here writing this letter and reflecting my time in Adelaide I have a new spark in life to get things done and to focus on my career goals.

I feel refreshed and ready to tackle the world.

Kind Regards,

Zia Westerman