Written by Jeff Meyer on 4 Apr 2016
In the Shadong province of Eastern China lives a 26-year-old woman who is proving that even something as debilitating as cerebral palsy can’t keep the human spirit down. Despite the fact that this disorder has made moving her hands nearly impossible, she has spent the past 10 years writing on her computer by using her feet instead. Over the course of that decade, Sun Lukang has authored four books and will have more published in the future.
Books Sell out at Local Event
According to a report by Tencent, the young author recently attended a book-signing event that was held at a local coffee shop. There, she met with fans of her poetry, signed their books and even heard many of them read her poems aloud.
“While I can’t use my hands, my feet are much more nimble than other people’s,” she said with a smile.
At the event, there were 40 first editions of her books and they all sold out by the time it was over. If her talents as a writer and ability to type with her feet weren’t impressive enough, Sun also said that the proceeds from these sales would go to a charitable organization that trains teachers.
“I’m a member of the organization and they helped me to arrange this event,” Sun explained. “I hope that I can do what I can for them.”
An Unstoppable Optimism
Sun never complains about her life, always keeping a strong, cheerful and optimistic spirit. She says that her personality comes from her parents.
Sun is not one to complain about the challenges she faces. She remains strong, optimistic and cheerful with an indomitable spirit. These are personality traits she credits her parents with instilling into her.
The author was born in 1990 in Nancun, a town that’s outside of Qingdao. Her birth was a premature one and just six months later, doctors explained to her parents that she had cerebral palsy.
As a child, she struggled to even walk. Words were also extremely difficult for her to articulate. Still, her mom, Jiang Jie, refused to ever give up hope. She said, “Before she went to primary school, we had been helping her with rehabilitation exercises. Encouraged by a specialist, we trained her to write with her feet before she started school.”
At first, Sun had a very hard time trying to grip a pencil, as one would expect. After a while, though, she gradually got better and eventually mastered this difficult ability. However, with practice came a great strain in her legs and toes that soon made it too hard to write.
Learning to Type with Her Feet
Then, in 2002, when she was just 12, her father brought home a computer for her. For weeks and weeks, she kept practicing until finally she was able to type rather quickly with both feet.
Sun took her middle school and high school classes at home. A tutor would come to her there and teach her. Not surprisingly for someone with her dedication and discipline, Sun finished her normal coursework quickly and soon moved on to studying college-level courses too.
Aside from her prowess as a poet, Sun is also an avid book collector and voracious reader. She even started her own literary club back in 2013 and hopes to create a media company someday too.
A few weeks ago, Sun met another goal of hers when she married her husband, Liu Defang. The two met three years ago and immediately hit it off. “We’re very much alike,” Liu said, “but what attracted me to her was her optimism and cheerfulness.”
Despite how inspiration Sun’s story is, she’s actually not the only writer in China who has cerebral palsy. Last year, a 21-year-old writer from Anhui landed on the news when she finished her first book, also writing via a computer by foot.