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Aeturnum Libertas - Disability Pride Month.

Written by: Toni-Marie

I first wrote a blog about my views on Disability Pride Month back in approximately 2023. And by and large my opinion, belief and view on the subject has not changed very much at all since then. I still believe that it can mean different things to different people.

However. It is not something that I think should ever be celebrated or highlighted just for a Month every year! Don’t get me wrong – the fact that it even exists is a good thing! Although for me it merely serves as an opportunity to shine a spotlight on the whole issue of disability. And as with other such occasions. For example: Black History Month. It should never be something that is acknowledged, celebrated or highlighted just to appear to be politically correct.

That said! Disability Pride Month originated in America  - and is the result of an initial one day of celebration.  It came to be following the Americans Discrimination Act of 1990 (A.D.A.). It is now celebrated worldwide.

As far as I am concerned maintaining a strong sense of pride and confidence in myself will be a forever on-going process. I may have no control over my body - but my mind is so thankfully my own. Therefore. I set my own standard that I choose to live by.

And as a result my sense of pride and confidence run alongside my long held standards. For me pride can be found in the smallest of details. Something as simple as making sure that I have my watch and earrings on every day is all about creating and having my own sense of pride  As such I think Disability Pride Month is a not to be missed opportunity for those with disabilities to come together, focus on developing a strong sense of pride, support each other and use the platform to build an empowered sense of self! And if by its very existence it educates the world about disability then this can only be a positive thing.

However. Having got to the age of 52 I feel it is important to point out that our validation as a human being should come from within ourselves.

And most certainly not through the existence of specific dates in a Calendar! To celebrate our diversity and difference is one thing - but what if like me - You just want to be treated as a part of humanity. There is also the train of thought that says, by the very nature of having a set Month in the Calendar…   Surely it immediately sets us apart from the rest of society? At least to some degree?…

Somewhat on the flip-side of this opinion – I remember being so proud to have wheels when I watched the Paralympics of 2012! A unstoppable change for the better happened after that! Suddenly it was incredibly empowering to have a disability and bask in the glory of it! Sadly the feeling of absolute euphoria didn’t last. Which is why we must all strive as individuals to gain, maintain and keep our own sense of pride!

There is one woman whom I absolutely have to mention when I think of how and why I came to be all that I am today! And that is my beautiful Mum! You see. She is the one who taught me just how important it is to have a sense of pride in the first place!

And finally! This blog has also provided me with the unique opportunity to say just how proud I am of my friend and colleague.

 C.E.O. Mr. David Young for his most recent achievement! The Outstanding Director! Star of Social Care Award! As someone who has lived within the Social Care system all my life.  It takes an individual like David. Someone who is at the heart of the actual service delivery of Social Care. With an unwavering sense of compassion and strength for humanity. - He who will stop at nothing to give those with all manner of different disabilities/support needs a huge sense of pride for who we are as human beings…

Thank you David!  So much! You are The Flashlight! In what would otherwise be a much tougher and dimly lit world! For many of us who constantly have to struggle just to be able to live our lives…

 

Spotlight: Disability Pride Month. July 2024.

Thank you for reading!

Aeturnum Libertas! (Meaning Forever Freedom!)

Warm Wishes.

Toni-Marie

Please Note: Any and all of the opinions, beliefs or thoughts expressed in this blog are the writers own.

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