adult disability

‘Two generations ago, I would have lived in an institution.’ There’s a buzz in the air. A new day is approaching in the world of disability!’: Wife of man with cerebral palsy becomes disability advocate, ‘Let’s crack this dialogue open together’

“I was the most apprehensive, uneasy person he ever met. Me. The person who went on to marry him, and have kids and a life with him. Very simply put, I got over it. The chair, the speech impediment, all of it. I’m happy I got brave enough to get to know this whole and magnificent human.”

‘He never complained; he just chugged along. It wasn’t easy. It almost felt like I was running.’: Wheelchair user with terminal illness thanks friend for his act of kindness

“There are many things I struggle with in regards to living with a terminal illness. Even if I did just a 5k one day, I could knock it off my list and enjoy the experience. Well, I sat on that goal for too long, and it never came to be. Fast forward to today: I came the closest I will to meeting that goal.”

‘I found myself drenched in sweat in the middle of the night. The doctor said, ‘You look perfectly healthy, but on paper you would terrify any doctor.’: Woman details brave journey with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, Addison’s disease

“My doctor came in, her tone solemn and harsh. She was about to give me a serious dose of reality. She looked me straight in the eye and said, ‘Listen, people with this have died from a minor dental procedure. If not treated and monitored properly, it will kill you.’ I was 35 years old, trapped in an 80-year-old body.”

‘It can’t be bad, you’re young. You look fine.’ I questioned whether my symptoms were in my head.’: Single mom diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, ‘I don’t know what tomorrow has in store, but I’m ready to fight’

“I went from busy full days of work to barely handling the commute. I struggled to keep up with other moms my age. Misconceptions such as, ‘Young people can’t get it,’ and ‘You look totally healthy,’ infuriated me. It’s not just a disease for the elderly. I wasn’t fighting only for myself, but also my son.”

‘When you see me in a handicapped parking spot, you roll your eyes. My husband explains, ‘She doesn’t get better from this. She ultimately dies from it.’: Woman with multiple chronic illnesses urges ‘not all disabilities are visible’

“When you see me in a handicapped parking spot, you might glare. You may even be like those who have said something rude or left a nasty note on my windshield. I sport titanium rods and screws that go from the base of my head to my mid-back. You wouldn’t know by looking at me I have a terminal illness.”

Woman in a wheelchair makes a straight face at the camera while holding her hair back

‘I plummeted 3 stories from my apartment balcony. My hand grazed the railing. I tried to catch myself, but it was too late.’: Woman paralyzed after faulty balcony accident, ‘I take each day with gratitude’

“The surgeon explained, ‘Your spine is a mush. You’ll be lucky if you wake up functioning.’ I couldn’t feel from the neck down. ‘Have I been in a car accident?’ No one had the heart to tell me. I just kept thinking, ‘Eh, I’ll be alright. They don’t know what they’re talking about.’ I cried and swept it under the rug. Little did I know, my body was a newborn again. I learned what dead weight felt like. I’d hear, ‘Oh, that’s sad. She’s so beautiful.’ My life turned upside down.”

‘They were born like this. There is nothing we can do.’ They were tied to beds and drugged. I couldn’t accept that answer.’: Woman helps dozens of abused, disabled children find loving homes, ‘Every child has value’

“I entered the orphanage. Hundreds of children were living there, but the halls were silent, expect the occasional wail or moan. I saw skeletal bodies, empty eyes, smelly diapers. I heard doctors calling them ‘disasters.’ One child had a sack of fluid coming from the back of her skull. It was her brain, and it was leaking fluid. Children were covered in cigarette burns. I couldn’t believe my eyes. And I couldn’t look away. I knew I had to help.”

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