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Why Cerebral Palsy Is My Escape

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Many moons ago, I don’t think I ever would have thought of telling someone, “I’m really happy with who I am.” I used to live with a most negative attitude about life, because all I ever did was fight so ever defiantly to be what I considered to be “normal.” I lived to tell myself I had one goal in mind: I wanted to fit in. I was determined to be popular. I so badly wished for a way out of my teenage misery, but no matter how hard I tried or how long I searched, I could never seem to find one.

A loophole. A safe space. An area that was free from the negative toxicity of the chains that seemed to surround my daily life.

No, I could never quite reveal that “safe space,” or even prove its existence.

That is, until now.

Defining myself requires a lot of thought. I have grown to be grateful to even have the life I have; sure cerebral palsy is not an ideal situation, but I choose to feel blessed about it. I wanted to share today the reasons why I now see cerebral palsy as my safe space, my escape.

First of all, I feel that without my disability and the experiences I’ve had due to it, I would not be the same person at all; my life is what has made me “Molly.” My cerebral palsy exists only as a small portion of me, yet I hope it serves as a source of encouragement for some. My goal in life now is to continue inspiring others, disability or no disability, to live their lives to the fullest, to do what they love, and to keep going no matter what obstacles may stand in the way. Yes, I have off days but despite my physical and sometimes emotional barriers, I am blessed.

Second of all, cerebral palsy has worked to shape my life and my being in such a beautiful way. I live life as a humble person and I am truly thankful for every opportunity I’ve had. My life road has led to my burgeoning career as a writer and disability advocate; I have been given a life that is so wonderful. My confidence has skyrocketed in the last few years, as I have learned the most precious of all life lessons: people with disabilities can be successful! My identity as a writer has been a great extension of who I am. I love what I have been called to do. Writing is my greatest therapy, my greatest escape.

Lastly, cerebral palsy is my escape because it has turned into something that has given me so much purpose. Drive. Ambition. Goals. My disability gives me something to fight for. A reason to live. I think life would be pretty boring if I was “normal.” I wouldn’t trade a single ounce of my life for anyone or anything! My message is: Be you. Be happy. Be grateful that you’re alive and well. Life is as beautiful as you make it. We only get one blank canvas to paint. One life notebook to write our story in.

Cerebral palsy has opened up a whole new world in the last few years, and has turned into my “safe space” in this dark, cold world. I am me, and if someone doesn’t like who I am, then I guess they will have to go find someone else’s parade to rain on. I choose to be happy. I choose to show others that your plain and simple life can be your escape too.

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Originally published: January 15, 2017
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