>I always say that I do so much and everything because I don’t know how to do or be any different. I was brought up no different to my brother and sister and was brought up not to let the fact I have CP and use a wheelchair stop me.
It’s an attitude I’m grateful for and I couldn’t imagine being any other way. I have CP. I’ve always had it. And I always will have it. If I want to live my life and do things and achieve goals and make the most of whatever time I have then CP just is – it has to be. I was talking to someone a few weeks ago (might have been a month or so, actually come to think of it) about the fact that I believe that having CP is what is right for me and that I have it because I have a soul which is strong enough to cope with it and for it not to matter to me. He, quite rightly, replied that it does matter. And it does, of course it does. I then clarified that to saying that CP matters but only in a good way. It’s the whole “defines but does not confine” thing.
I also believe very strongly in the social model. It’s a very useful thing which works on the principle that it is society and it’s set up – attitudes, access or lack of it, cultural norms – which disable me not the CP or the wheelchair. Things that stop me or cause me issues/difficulties are not because of me or CP – they are not MY PROBLEM. I have at times referred to bad things which cause me problems as “society hates disability”
Anyways, the downside of this is there is always, ALWAYS going to be odd time when it actually is CP which stops me. I couldn’t take part in the regatta as fully as I wanted too yesterday and today. And that, plain and simple, was CP taking a pot shot at me. And nothing but CP.
I was a bit tearful about that at the time because I DON’T let CP stop me. And I felt like I let down those who gave up their time and put so much effort into getting me there.
The fact of the matter is none of them are bothered about it and they all told me I did do well. But, I’m Emma, I have CP it doesn’t have me. But today, it hurt both physically, mentally and emotionally.
There may be a few things we can do to make things easier for me – a couple of us had a quick brainstorm at lunch. In theory they should work if we can work out the specifics. In practice, however, I don’t think it can be fully solved which may mean I don’t do a lot of regattas. We shall see.
And in the meantime? I remind myself that “A loser is someone who when knocked down, stays down” (unknown) and go onwards and upwards – on to the next thing.
Oh and I just googled that quote to see who said it – all four of the results are this blog, in particular (specifically) this entry here (love that quote)