Being born with a physical disability I have become used to hearing people refer to me with very odd and somewhat uncomfortable words like BRAVE, MARVELOUS, COURAGEOUS just to name a few.Until my late twenties I was unaffected by the negative response to being referred to in these ways until I came into contact with other older disabled people. In a lot of the community these terms are seen as derogatory and patronising.These words along with some physical gestures like being patted on the head like a child at 47 does evoke a rather aggressive response I’ll admit. Getting on with our lives and attempting to live our best lives is no different to anyone else and all we want is to do so.The idea of being brave gives impressions of achieving some kind of epic task like climbing the highest mountain or finding the cure to all the deadly diseases in the world but not live our best lives as best as possible, surely?.
HOWEVER!!!!!! Wait, living through what I’ve experienced over the last ten years, how my life fell apart and I went to the brink of…god knows what has given me a whole new perspective on the idea of courage. Having a small lifeline to cling onto and rebuild myself sent me on one hell of an epic adventure.
When you loose such a major part of your life which highlighted you in a good way you loose yourself. Some, sadly loose themselves and never find a way back, but here’s where I will allow the courage word to enter the scene…The ability to admit defeat and that you need help and actually ACT on it until you enter into a new life THAT is courage.The never giving up, the ill keep,trying, the illl find another way, The I deserve better…that’s courage. A lot of people’s focus is on how spectacular they fell from grace and they focus on that but the story doesn’t end there the best part is actually finding a way back up and being able to look yourself in the mirror and say…I made it despite all I’ve have been through my courage kept me going kept me believing in myself kept me alive and now look at me,That is courage and the kind I admire and the kind I shamelessly remind myself of every single day.Courage is NOT a dirty word.