Fitness · fundraising · health · Medical · stroke

‘Coming out for a second time 

When I was 19 I came out to my family as gay and as most people I thought it was going to be a lot worse than it was. I am really fortunate that my family and friends were and are very understanding and accepting of my sexuality and since then it’s hardly been any issue. 

But now I am faced with accepting and coming out as disabled. The stigma attached to this is that you are someone who is constantly wheelchair bound and it must be really obvious that you are ‘different’. But this is far from the case and I am so glad to be reading more on invisible illnesses and how they are being recognised more. A big thumbs up to asda who I believe were the first big shop to put sign up advertising that not all disabilities are visable. 

Whether you aquired a disability of some sort or were born with it, we all have a process of different stages of acceptance and admittance. 

While it’s not easy accepting a body that is not as strong as you would like it to be, there are loads of reasons why you should try to do so anyway. If you’re looking to transform your life with any form of disability then please read on for some of my reasons why accepting and ‘coming out can be one of the best things you ever do.  

1) It’s totally freeing 

As human beings we are always going through life what people think of us. I don’t think anyone can say they haven’t faced this and for me I know it is one thing I struggle with and when you are disabled, I feel this can be heightened significantly. However, if we start to embrace our disability and how we are, we will no longer care as much what people think or care if we get stared at in the street. This can lead to a new ‘free’ way of thinking and can be really liberating and promote a happier living. But believe me when I say this isn’t always easy. 

2) No more shame.

There is actually a lot of shame that people with disabilities feel. This can be experienced when the individual is alone or even with family and friends where the person feel a ashamed or even embarrassed at who they perceive themselves as. By embracing yourself and your disability and by loving you for who you are can make a huge difference. Unfortunately there are a lot of factors in life which are out of our control and it is about realising what there are. This always brings me back to a quote I was once told by a fellow patienr when I was struggling to accept I had had a stroke. God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference 

Unfortunately shit does happen but it’s about learning to grow from those experiences and allowing your resilience towards them to grow. 

3) It’ll help you focus.

Another huge thing that happens when you begin to embrace yourself and your disability is that you stop thinking about it all the time. This allows more important things to consume your headspace and you feel yourself moving forward with your life. You can then focus on what is important to you in life without being held back. 

4) Life is too short.

This is something that people hear all the time but it is because it is so true. Life is short and I can’t believe that I am 25 in a few weeks but so much has happened in my lifetime. You don’t know what is around that corner so why spend your life at war with yourself. Whether or not you embrace your disability, you have to admit to yourself that you don’t want to spend your life feeling rubbish just because you are now or always have been disabled in some way. If you do then you have let your disability win and consume you. 

5) It’s practical.

Being practical is something we all become more of as we get older. You start to think about mortgages and a family etc. If you no longer fight your reality then life becomes easier and things begin to slot into place.

6) Your self confidence will grow  

With less struggle, there is more happiness, and this is one of the core lessons of embracing your disability. When you embrace who you are, both mentally and physically, you’ll finally reach a level of happiness that you weren’t at before. Yes, you may need some help along the way such as psychological intervention and/or medication but it will all help you learn to love yourself.

So those are the things I try and remind myself of daily but it’s never easy doing or knowing what the right thing is, but embracing your disability and who you are needs to happen. We all know that tomorrow is never guaranteed and we don’t know what is round that corner but that is why we need to take action now. 

Having a disability doesn’t change you. I have had some negative reactions from people since have started talking about my disability but they are in the minority. They are being narrow minded and now trying to understand about my health. You are all amazing in your own unique ways. 

Be strong. Be you. See the positives  

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