Whether I liked or not I stood out. The biggest sign of my cerebral palsy was most obvious in my hand and that initiated often unwanted conversations about it growing up & at school.
Being asked questions about its origin, its look, its feel – were hard to process – I didn’t know how different it felt, I didn’t (and still don’t!) have a comparison…
It produced a yearning to just fit in, hide it, not wanting it to be part or the start of the conversation. To the point it almost became toxic, I didn’t want to be disabled, I didn’t want to identify as that.
In time, and this took years and years, the acceptance and furthermore, embracement of my disability as very much part of me, grew internally. How do I create, adapt, succeed, fail and grow?
This mindset shift was very gradual, but then a realisation…how can it not be part of me? Why shouldn’t it be part of me?
In time, reflecting back to those asking the questions to me, was it actually just as natural to ask about my difference? The difficulty I had was that these reflective questions were clouded by the bullying I suffered alongside those of genuine curiosity about my condition that I just couldn’t process early on.
It’s through all of that that I’m delighted that difference is celebrated now.
Beyond what I’ve had / still got in the eyes of society, I enter the gym with a similar purpose to huge number of people in many respects. That is to make a positive change, day by day.
We all train differently, we have different goals & different schedules. We adapt differently and find our own unique ways to get there on this journey….and that my friends is worth celebrating!
Find your way 💚