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To the Child Asking Me About My Disability

Hello there, little one.

You are young and still learning about the world. There are so many questions you have. It’s a big, scary world out there, and each day, you find out more and more about it. And that’s OK — I’m older than you and still learning more about this world by the day. Part of life is learning and growing, and I believe the best time to do it is while you’re young! But there’s never a bad time to learn.

Image: I am standing in front of the “malls balls” in Adelaide, South Australia. I am wearing a grey hat, a purple jacket, a purple T-shirt and jeans. I am using my yellow forearm crutches.

You see, my disabilities are visible. There’s no hiding them. Some days I walk with crutches. Other days I use a walker. Rarely, I use a wheelchair. When I don’t use these, my gait is off kilter and looks funny.

You haven’t been exposed to a lot of people with disabilities. And it’s OK. Because guess what? I love all the same things anyone else does. I love Pokemon and “Doctor Who” and coffee and pizza. I love jokes, and I love hanging out with my friends.

Please don’t be afraid to ask me questions. Please don’t be afraid of me. I want to help you understand. I want to help you learn to navigate the world. I want you to approach me.

It’s OK if you don’t understand. It’s OK if you’re nervous or scared. I’m learning more about the world every day just like you are.

Please ask me questions. Please learn more about my disabilities. Please learn how you can be an advocate for people like me.

After all, I believe it’s going to take someone like you to change the world.

Follow this journey on A Heart Made Fullmetal.