Small Strides: A Mission of Understanding

Cystic Fibrosis and Cerebral Palsy are the same thing, CF affects the lungs, CP is brought on by a traumatic brain injury either envitro or shortly after birth

I have often been asked why I write the way I do, why I write about boys and girls, men and women with disabilities.  Some wonder why I write more about girls and than boys, and that answer is simple I write more about disabled women, than I do about disabled men, because I have a first hand understanding of the limitations, the life of a disabled woman, because I am one.  I do try to get into character when I am writing about a man, but the truth is I think I will always write more about disabled women, because that is just me.

I write the way I do to dispel myths to get into the heart of the character, and that is what the Lord called me to do.  I want to dispel the myths of what it is and what it is not to be a person with a disability, a person who may use a wheelchair, who may suffer anything from the depression disorders, or simply to be a person who suffers from a Chronic illness and is trying to be understand.  A large majority of what I write is fiction, but the feelings, the emotions are as real as my own tears.

Most of my characters are not going to have a wand waved at them and get magically cured, but because I am a Christian myself, I find that when I write with the Lord’s hand guiding me, I am able to help my characters get through the difficulties they may face.

I have had people who called me stupid for believing the way I believe, and I have been targeted for some of the subject matters I write about, but that has not stopped me, nor will it.  The Lord gave me the gift of words when I first picked up the pen and found the magic within and I am not going to compromise my gift for anyone or anything.

I was talking earlier today to a friend who happens to have a disability, I have several and many are worse off than I, but this particular friend and I were voicing our frustrations about those who do not even try to understand about those with disabilities, those with conditions that are very real, and really change lives.  This particular friend sufferes from a condition that is seen, but far to often not understood like me she suffers from a NMD, and has to deal with its ramifcations though sadly her conditions is more progressed than mine.  We talked awhile about many different aspects of our conditions and how good it felt to be able to vent to someone who understood,  I want to convey somethings here before I close this entry out:

If someone is depressed they are not going to snap out of it, but that is no excuse for you to be a jerk to them, or them to you.

Just because someone uses a wheelchair does not mean they want to be talked down to, there’s a good chance there is as smart as you, or smarter.

Yelling at a deaf person is not going to let them hear you, and talking to them like they are idiots will accomplish nothing.

Just because someone is blind does not mean they sit in inner darkness, perhaps they are the most enlightened of us, because they are not making visual judgements.

No one likes to be called crippled its akin to racial slurs, so just think before you speak.

Just because someone lost a limb does not mean they are any less of a person, and if its a soldier we should thank them, not treat them like crap.

Not everyone with Autism sits in a constant state of aloneness, there is a large spectrum of Autism and we can not box each person into a single category.

Not everyone with Spina Biffida is going to die in childhood, and many will face a long normal life with the proper care.

Muscular Dystrophy is not one disability, but it encompasses over forty two conditions from ALS, to Beckers

Cystic Fibrosis and Cerebral Palsy are the same thing, CF affects the lungs, CP is brought on by a traumatic brain injury either envitro or shortly after birth

Dyslexia does not make a person stupid, it just makes it more difficult to read or write, and causes the reversal of words, Dyscalucla is the reversal of numbers:

Don’t judge anyone by leg braces, neck braces or scooters, wheelchairs, Prosthetics  they no more define us, than your car is your definition.

Just because someone doesn’t “Look” Sick doesn’t mean they are faking it.

Copyright Michelle R Kidwell

7/24/2009

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