I may live with a disability, but the disability in no way defines my life, I have my limitations yes, but I do what I can, and on the bad days I thank the Lord for the good ones. I am rich in the ways that matter and in my world leg braces and scooters dont matter, it is the Lord that puts the love in my heart, and the family I am surrounded with, some blood relatives some not.
Living with a disaibilty is not always about making compromises or concessions it is about learning to do things in a different way. That does not necessarly make us different, it just allows us to live in an able bodied world.
We can not more box ppl with disabilities in one category than we can anyone else, so what is true for one person may not be true for another. Even people with the same disabilities have different attitudes and do things differently from one another. We can not assume that all children with Spina Biffida will require Catheters and shunts into adulthood.
I have a neuromusuclar disorder but saying that is not really pinpointing anything down, anymore than saying that I am of Euroepan decent, because Europe consists of a large part of this world, and saying my ancestors came from Europe is not like saying my ancestors came from Verona and Wales.
When you are disabled you are often subject to snap judgements, they see a wheelchair and treat you as if you are a child, they see you using sign language and scream in your ear as if that is going to help, but I decided long ago to make my words make a difference. I wanted to create stories for both children and adults that showed just how much a person can overcome, In A Sisters Justice and the books in that series that follow I create Marishka Tanya Alexei a Parapalegic cop who shows the world what she can overcome, and in Four Words to Freedom a young adult novel which is not published yet, I create a young adult who despite having non verbal Cerebral Palsy, shows her Mother that she is not in anyway retarded as her Mom treats her for the first fifteen or sixteen years of her life. There are other stories, and in With A Little help which was published in 2005/2006 my friends Karen, and Karla and myself tackle the issues of being a disabled Christian.
I also find that working with children gives me a chance to show them that ppl with disabilities are not all that different, I do not shy away from there questions or forbid them from touching my braces. or when Amber has sleeps over using my scooter because I know the best way to let them understand something is to let them experience it.
Copyright Michelle R Kidwell