October is always a special month to me. Despite raising awareness all year round, it is great to have a focus and to have an awareness day where everyone becomes united in the message they share. Cerebral Palsy affects everyone differently, yet our shared experiences and similarities can help the general public to understand the disability in a clearer sense. Over the years I have enjoyed raising awareness and it is something I do with a great deal of pride, but what does Cerebral Palsy awareness day mean to me?
There is more that can be learnt
Despite having Cerebral Palsy my whole life, I am still
learning. I am learning about how my body works and how to achieve with the
limitations that I have. I am even learning how it changes as I get older and
how to manage some new hurdles that previously were not an issue. Cerebral
Palsy will always be there but learning how best to manage it can be an ongoing
process. On the other hand, I have the pleasure of learning from others. We get
to share our top tips of life and learn the differences and similarities
between us all.
It’s okay to be different
Often there is a fine line between showing how similar
disabled people can be to the general public and getting them to understand the
difficulties that we face. You can get so wrapped up with life and forget to
acknowledge the fact that we will have faced extra challenges in comparison to
able- bodied people. Cerebral Palsy awareness day means I can say “yeah, I have
Cerebral Palsy!”, and wholeheartedly be proud of that difference. I feel that
awareness days give us the opportunity to be honest and open about the
challenges we face and to know that it’s completely okay to be different.
I can see just how far I have come
I’ve learnt to tie shoe laces at the grand age of 16, could
tell the time (ish) at 17 and went on a train by myself at the age of 19. I am
still making progress. I make a cup of tea with one hand and have to count on
my fingers to figure out timetables. My path in life is far from conventional
but steps are being taken to become more independent or to manage aspects of my
Cerebral Palsy. Looking at pictures of a premature baby who is surrounded by
wires and medical intervention as a result of being 8 weeks early is scary. Knowing
that you died several times and were fighting for survival is scary. However,
just look at how far you have come! We’re poorly babies who beat the odds and
are succeeding at life regardless of that. Be proud of that.
Knowing I am not alone
I know there is a support network out there. I know that so
many people have Cerebral Palsy who can relate to my experiences and would be
there to offer support and guidance. However, daily life has a habit of getting
in the way. It can be so easy to be going through life and find things tough,
but not know where to turn. Feeling alone when you have a disability is
completely understandable considering our daily struggles. However, this
doesn’t need to be the case, get on social media, read blogs or turn to the
online community. Awareness days can be a chance to be reminded of that support
networks are available- no one with CP is alone.
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What does Cerebral Palsy awareness day mean to me?
- 48.4K All Categories
- 9.6K Start here and say hello!
- 3.9K Coffee lounge
- 3.9K Disability rights and campaigning
- 1.4K News and opportunities
- 134 Community updates
- 11.3K Talk about your situation
- 1.6K Children, parents, and families
- 620 Work and employment
- 517 Education
- 939 Housing, transport, and independent living
- 906 Aids, adaptations, and equipment
- 237 Dating, sex, and relationships
- 245 Exercise and accessible facilities
- 19.1K Talk about money
- 1.7K Benefits and financial support
- 4.2K Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
- 11.2K PIP, DLA, and AA
- 1.9K Universal Credit (UC)
- 3.5K Talk about your impairment
- 1.2K Cerebral palsy
- 575 Chronic pain and pain management
- 636 Rare, invisible, and undiagnosed conditions
- 689 Autism and neurodiversity
- 821 Mental health and wellbeing
- 283 Sensory impairments
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