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Pretending Is Not What It Is Cracked Up To Be...

After slithering on the floor not being able to crawl and continuously falling to my right side my parents' concern became a reality... I was diagnosed with a mild degree of some kind of CP or what I typically refer to as right hemiparesis.

With no logical reason as to why I was born this way and the need to blame someone or thing… I followed in the footsteps of my mother and put the blame on my father. Not sure how to embrace my CP I spent most of my life sad that I was not like others and did my best to pretend that I am not "disabled". However, it did not help being ridiculed at school when all the other kids were "normal".

Somewhere down the line feeling small and limited I made myself believe that I could never do the things I always wanted to do... Running, biking, snowboarding, fishing, rock climbing among other things. It all seemed out of reach and unattainable and I eventually gave up on the idea of being "athletic".

Pushing that aside... I somehow stumbled into the audiology profession thinking instead of helping improve my physical self I could find ways to improve the life of those who are hearing impaired. However little did I realize that by doing so I would yet again be facing the struggle of dealing with my right "baby" hand. Manipulating hearing aids and the little parts that make up the hearing aids can be a tough feat with one and a half hands. Much to the disbelief of others I graduated in the top of my class FINALLY not letting my CP discourage me...

Recently being told by someone close to me that I would never be athletic... my fear was yet again validated. However this time instead of giving up I found the drive or motivation to beat the odds and do or at least attempt to do those activities I always wanted take part in (hopefully I will not hit my 11th broken bone in the process ;))

A couple years ago I ran into a girl I knew from elementary school. Hesitant to see her again the first words that came out of her mouth was "wow you look healthy" as though I was dying from some disease. Not saying a word I just remember thinking to myself… why did I constantly let other opinions dictate my limitations or is it me who thinks that I am limited???

Now watching adaptive sports and the Paralympics I find myself with the determination to do more... to be more... and stop giving up. As I'm getting older…I feel the pain and stress take a toll on my right side with the thought that my CP may get worse with time. But now more than ever I'm tired of pretending I’m “normal” and ultimately being in constant fear of my CP…

emoheee emoheee 26-30, F 3 Responses Feb 8, 2013

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Good for you. I don't know if you are aware but CP is caused by an anoxic brain injury. Which means the brain was deprived of oxygen for a period of time. This can happen during birth or at anytime the brain is without oxygen for a period of time

I dont think the cp gets worse as we age, so much as the natural aging process seems to be more aggrivated. i find because my right side is always compensating for my left i have more back pain ect. I think that is why as I get older I am feeling that it is more important to become more active, even if that means faceing the fact that i need to use what ever assistants is avalible to be. What things do you do to be active?

I don't think so either... I think it is just a fear that with age things may be more difficult to do daily activities. But I completely agree with you about the importance of being more active. I have been running a lot, take spinning classes and started to get into pilates and yoga for balance.

Do you go to a yoga class, or is it something you do at home? im nervious to take a class since i dont think I would be able to do 99% of it.

Thats great! Im trying to get in the habit of doing it weekly as well. I tried a pilates class then incorporated what I learned there with exercises I found online or on demand. I prefer to do it at home since I can not do all the different positions or exercises. Youtube has a lot of different videos that I came across online.

Oh please tell me it doesn't get worse. I have sever spastic CP. I wear diapers, am fed through a G-tube, can't talk, and my left arm has to be strapped down from constant quivering. I can't even stop myself from drooling!

hi db,
I must say I don't know what to say to you. I don't pity you but i have tears right now just imagining what you must go through. I'm glad you have a way to communicate. As a pediatric RN I have cared for many kids like you and many did not have a way to communicate before computers. I will say there was one boy who was in our peds ICU and I was upset because his parents were not able to visit much and they for what ever reason did not let him have his computer while he was in the hospital.