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What I Shouldn't Have to Fight for After Battling Demons of My Own

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Most of my life has been far from a picnic when it comes to people, especially those I see on a regular basis. Classmates, club members, co-workers, people you are often forced to associate with.

Out of the dozens or so people I associate with daily, I get along with many. Some are great friends I hang out with on occasion, others are just those who respect me. And others, well, let’s just say are far from magical.

I grew up with a lot of abuse from many of my classmates and co-workers from jobs in the past, and some situations are triggers to my post-traumatic stress disorder, which has kicked into high gear the last five years or so. Those instances always made me question my worth in this world. Why can’t I do the things others can do? Why some people can succeed and excel better than I can, and yet no matter what I do, it just isn’t enough.

I’ve built up a shell since my days as a kid, learning how to fight back or simply just walk away to let karma run its course.

But sometimes, that shell can crack, the yolk of emotions leaks out, and things get messy.

Sometimes Humpty Dumpty can’t be put back together again.

I want to find my worth in this world, even if it’s just selling tickets and working a decent job until I can retire. I want to find true love beyond my current situation where I would be respected and not judged. And although medically I can’t have kids without it being a high-risk pregnancy, I still want to have my own family.

I want the world to know that while I feel like my disabilities force me to be one step behind my peers, I’m pushing twice as hard and demand respect and dignity.

I may not be the best worker. I may get emotional when things trigger me. Sometimes I don’t read visual cues too well and make mistakes. But hasn’t anyone done the same thing at one point?

People like me, we want to be respected, loved and most of all, accepted.

I don’t want to settle for less than that. And I believe nobody should. Even those I consider my enemies.

I wish my disability meant no hate or discrimination, and no pain from others too ignorant or misinformed to understand.

I just want to be me. And be accepted for it, instead of having any dignity I have left taken from me. I battled many demons in my life; why should I have to battle more?

Originally published: February 9, 2016
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