East Nashville, especially the Five Points area, is being revamped and influenced in a big way by artists, artisans, and entrepreneurs. It's a truly exciting time to stroll through these neighborhoods and hit all the quaint little shops in search of the perfect holiday gift. Unless you happen to be in a wheelchair, or on crutches, or use a walker. If you need any kind of mobility aid a great number of independently owned small businesses are inaccessible.Read More
Got your attention, didn't I? Do you find that directive offensive, because I sure do. Although most of you are bristling at the word "cripple" I find the idea that we need a separate set of instructions to talk to someone who is handicapped utterly off-putting and exclusionary.Read More
And we should work it out. I don't care how mild or how severe your CP is we Palsies deserve to look as good as anybody else.
The way you dress reflects how you feel about yourself. It doesn't determine your worth as a person, but it does determine your estimation of your own value. It lets other people know how much or how little you think about the package you're presenting to the world. I think it's really, really important for those of us with Cerebral Palsy to understand that we have the potential to be as valuable as anyone else. It's equally important to understand that we are being judged for our physical appearance far more critically than our able-bodied counterparts. It's not because people are jerks - although some people clearly are. It's because as human beings we are physiologically hardwired to notice differences in our environment and that includes people who look or move in a way that is radically different from the norm. In other words, people are going to notice you because you are handicapped. All the political correctness in the world isn't going to change that. It's just going to make others that much more hesitant to approach you for fear of saying something offensive.
Do you want someone else's first impression of you be of nothing but your disability? Are you so nicely wrapped that people are staring at you - in a GOOD way - because they'd like to interact with you? Or do you look like you either think little of yourself or wish you owned Harry Potter's cloak of invisibility?
Why deny anyone the opportunity to get to know you? Change their preconceptions with that first glance, that first impression. You can do it. I have done it, and I know that for a fact because people I've met that have become friends have told me so.
It took me far too long to come out of the shadows. Don't waste another day of your life waiting for the world to change. Change your world - today.
I want to get to know you! I want to start a movement with you. I want to recruit you as a fellow Spashionista. I want us to help each other look like we're worth our weight in gold; because we are!