has had its ups and downs. As a young child, I can remember the way
other children would look at me and stare because of the way that
I walked. There were many times that my schoolmates would laugh at
me and call me names simply because of their lack of understanding
of why I was a little different, especially back in the mid 70s and
early 80s. Children then were just unwilling to take the time to learn
why one of their classmates might walk, speak or seem noticeably different
Now that I am
an adult, I have noticed that the stares and names have begun to fade,
and judgments that once were negative have begun to turn toward acceptance.
The signing of the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act, ed.)
has played a great part in breaking down some of those barriers that,
as a child, left me to fight a war that seemed to have no end. Now
I look beyond what I can't do and focus on what I CAN. I have learned
that limitations open doors that have been closed, showing other ways
to meet our needs. I have always looked at life as a challenge, grasping
each obstacle with open arms.
There is nothing
in this world that comes easy. I must stand tall and look forward,
to be ever so ready for what still lies ahead. People often feel sorry
for those who were born with some type of disability. But their compassion
Yes, I may not be able to run as fast or perform certain tasks, but
my disability gives me a better look at life and all that's around
me. I want to be seen not as a disability but as a person who has,
and will continue to, bloom. So I decided to become a advocate on
behalf of disabled Americans, to fight for our rights that for so
long have been ignored.
I feel that it
only takes one powerful voice to change the minds of many nations,
and as long as I have a mouth to use and a mind to think I will continue
to work to bring peace upon the disabled community.