Being disabled, something that I’m not

disabled girl flying kite

Remember being a teenager? Being insecure about every little thing because you’re body is changing, you’re changing, everyone around you has an opinion about you… Well, for me (and probably for a lot of teens) it wasn’t such a great time. Mostly because I had to deal with being different because I am disabled. 

I was different from the day I was born. My left hand was missing (maybe I left it in my mothers womb, thought I didn’t need it, I have no idea). At first, ofcourse, it really worried my parents. What was going to happen to this little, disabled baby? How was I ever going to play volleyball? (A big issue for my dad, he always dreamed of playing volleyball with his kids ;)). How about using a scissor? Riding a bike?

All these things we’re ofcourse very logical to think about. But the things that seemed hard, turned out to be very easy. I was the first one in my class that could tie her shoelaces. Riding a bike? Ofcourse I could do it! Playing volleyball? Duuhh, why not?! Even windsurfing was something I learned.

marit
Little me…

windsurfing 4

Kiting with one hand and an elbow ;). 

windsurfing 1

windsurfing 2

Windsurfing. Yep, that’s me!

Living a normal life was not so hard… Untill I became a teenager. Going to highschool it seemed that everybody just wanted one thing; fitting in. And fitting in usually meant being the same as everybody else. ‘Please don’t be to different! That’s just embarrassing.’ But being the same was just my problem, because… I simply wasn’t. And so I started hiding my handicap. If I didn’t want people to know about my handicap, believe me, they wouldn’t. Hiding it was one of my biggest talents.

Looking back I realize I wasn’t the only one having issues. Lots of teenagers are being bullied for no reason at all. Thankfully, I was never really bullied (apart from some horrible comments on my missing arm). I had friends, nice teachers, parents who loved me and a great family. Still, being different in a way that I can never change, can sometimes be very challenging.

 

About two years ago I realized I wanted to stop hiding my handicap. It is a part of who I am. It’s not something to be ashamed of, it’s something to be proud of. Even on those days when kids keep staring, or when a person makes a weird comment. I am who I am. And I don’t ever want to pretend being something that I’m not (a boring normal person without any handicaps :p).

What is the thing that makes you insecure about yourself?

Marit

Marit is the person who started Pretty Different. She was born with only one hand and has struggled with the crazy ideal of perfection. Since accepting that she's different, she started seeing the beauty in 'imperfection'.

7 Comments

  1. Pingback: Health Food
  2. Indeed Marit! ‘I am who I am’ .. Love you’re slogan. There are enough copy’s, let’s be original. God created us as original! -In mijn beste Engels:p-

  3. wauw heb je mooi geschreven,
    weet nog dat je op de basisschool heel handig was met de ringen net zoals op de foto hier boven:).
    liefs

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *