Take whatever you like. A club, a charity, a company. No matter what it is, you want to know what it is all about. What is at the core. In under 3 seconds. Because then you make up your mind. Whether you want to find out more. Or move on.

The Core

Yesterday, I ‘hangout’ with a cousin of a very good friend of mine and his wife. I had never met them before and thought we’d just talk a bit about An Saol, and especially the two fundraising cycles.

They were sitting in California in what looked like a studio. I was sitting in our sitting room which must have looked, in comparison, so 20th century.

Two hours later, they told me that they would be privileged to help me getting the message out to as any people as possible. Using the web. Using short video clips. And, who knows, making a documentary.

They said: imagine.

Doctors were telling you there is no hope. And look at Pádraig today, cycling in his MOTOMed at almost four times the recommended speed pre-set by the physios – all by himself; not cooperating with people who ask stupid questions (do you spell Kodaline with a ‘C’ or a ‘K’) but letting them know immediately if they ask him something more substantial, or ask him what would be his favourite drink or meal.

They ‘got it’. And they reminded me of what is at the Core of An Saol. What it is that Pádraig is demonstrating to the world. What his new mission in life is.

It couldn’t be simpler. It couldn’t be more important.

An Saol – Life.

The joy of living. The determination to make the best of what life has to offer. The energy to live life to the full. Love of life. Love of family, friends and the people around you.

An Saol – Life. With a severe acquired brain injury. Is different and challenging. But look at Pádraig and his incredible determination, energy, and love of life, love of people.

Life doesn’t end with a severe acquired brain injury.

This is why we need to make sure that Pádraig – and anyone else with injuries like his – can continue to enjoy what he enjoys as much as anyone else his age: music, good conversations and debate, company, culture, good food and drink, baths, banter, travel, physical and mental challenges.

The way to ensure that he – and anyone else with injuries like his – can enjoy life to the fullest is to provide an adequate social environment where that can happen, as well as adequate therapies supporting recovery and maintenance of as much of his mental and physical abilities as possible.

It’s about An Saol – Live and Living with a severe Acquired Brain Injury.

That’s at the core! – Everything we do must help us to get there!

Pádraig had a great weekend. First with a family visiting who also have a son with a severe acquired brain injury yesterday (a first). Then our first ‘dinner party’ invitation (another first) to the house of some very special friends today where we all sat around the table and had a perfect meal and brilliant company. It was fabulous.