Tuesday, October 25, 2016

FOUR YEARS

Four years. 

Four years ago today I was sitting on my bed in my freshman year dorm room when I hit "Publish" on my very first blog post. I then proceeded immediately to the "settings" of my blog and set everything to "Private" so that only I could read what I had written, which completely defeats the purpose of writing a blog.

I was scared. I wasn't sure how to share my story, or where to begin, or if anybody would even want to read what I had written.

But when I gathered the courage to set my blog to "public" again, people actually started reading what I was writing, and it seemed like it mattered to them. So I kept at it...I kept writing, kept sharing, kept connecting.

When I started this blog, there was a part of me that was afraid I was giving permission for my CP to overshadow the rest of my life. You see, cerebral palsy is something I rarely discuss outside of this space, outside of this community. I've never wanted to be known as "that girl with a disability" or "that girl who walks funny," and while CP is a beautiful, wonderful part of my identity, I want people to see me as so much more than that.

Looking back, I realize that my worries were unfounded. Blogging about my CP hasn't allowed it to take over my life, but my blog has given CP a space within my life. For the first time, I feel as though I have a safe place to acknowledge my cerebral palsy and all of the "extras" that come along with it (including, but not limited to, startle reflex, wrecked shoes, surgeries, and mini heart attacks whenever I spot a curb). I don't have to hide that part of me anymore. And having this space has given me the courage and confidence to be more open about my CP in the "outside" world, too -- even knowing that "the real world" might not be as supportive and understanding as my blog readers.

Above all, I want to thank you guys -- my readers -- whether you've been part of this journey for all four years or whether you've just found my blog, I want you to know that I appreciate you so, so much. My favorite part of blogging is that it has given me the opportunity to form connections beyond what I ever thought possible...friendships that are every bit as deep and complex and beautiful as the friendships I have forged in person. Many of you have reached out to tell me that this blog has helped you feel less alone, and hearing that fills me with warmth beyond words. Know that YOU have helped me, too -- just by listening, just by being here, whether we've written novel-length emails back and forth or whether you prefer to read without commenting.

Thank you...thank you for showing me that I am not alone in this, and for being here to encourage me through the hard days and rejoice with me through the wonderful days. This blog has become more than I ever imagined it would, and it has been an honor and a privilege to share my journey with you! Here's to another four years of blogging and connecting and togetherness in this crazy adventure of life. <3

If you'd like to reach out at anytime, please don't hesitate to do so: transcendingcp@gmail.com

LOVE YOU ALL!

3 comments:

  1. I've got tears in my eyes...

    Thank you so so much for giving me a place to come to where my disability isn't bad, scary, weird, or a burden. Your community has also become my community... this is a place where I feel comfortable and accepted. But most importantly this is a place where I belong. I never feel ashamed of my CP when I come here, just less alone. I can't thank you enough for that.

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  2. Dear K,
    It has been SUCH a pleasure reading through some of your blog posts in the last couple of weeks! I'm just new to your blog, but enjoying every minute of reading, as I find myself laughing, crying, smiling and nodding enthusiastically along with you. Thank-you SO much for writing and sharing with us all. It is filling me with joy each time I read that your blogging here is also giving you more confidence to speak about your challenges in the "outside" world too!

    I can totally see myself doing the same thing as you did - writing the first post and then changing all settings to private! LOL Well, again, I'm so glad you had the courage to share... Who knows whether I may someday join you in the blogosphere? :)

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  3. K, it is an honor and pleasure to read your blog. You reached me when I needed it. It takes a lot of courage to share the truth so thank you so very much for doing so! When people share the truth it resonates, that is exactly what you have done. In regards to those who only see your disability and not you as you, a full person,they are just not worth it to begin with! ;) You're welcome. I look forward to your next posts!!!

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