My sights were firmly set on being a professional athlete until I heard the words, ‘you’ll never be able to run again, to all the - ‘you can’t do’s’ - possible, topping it off with, oh and you’ll be in a wheelchair by the age of 30! I was eleven years old when it all changed…
I consider myself to be a fortunate victim of a road accident that left me with a physical disability following multiple operations on my leg. I used to think that learning to walk 8 times (if you include my first steps), must be a record of some sort, until my most recent operation in 2017 where I met a man who’d more than doubled my score. Any competing spirit or bragging rights died after this revelation.
When the world looks at me, its blind to my disability. Though is that because I don’t fit the stereotypical vision of what disability looks like, a person in a wheelchair? Is it because I used my creative mind and turned my limp into a swagger disguising my reality so I wouldn’t have to repeat my whole life journey to everyone I came across who asked, what’s wrong with my leg? I never spoke about my constant painful conditions to many except to those who needed to know because, what’s the point? I didn’t want sympathy, and what could others do for me I wasn’t already doing for myself to keep me being balanced and able to stand and walk? I’ve always thought that we attract the things that you talk and think about the most, so I chose not to talk about my conditions so it wouldn’t manifest more of the same. Everyday I chose to greet the world with a positive mental attitude and my continually evolving version of what became known as a smile.
I’ve had fun experimenting over the years testing public perception of disability, including how and if race plays a role. It takes a strong, resilient mindset to ignore and not accept what others say will become of you, and mine came from leading specialist doctors and surgeons at London’s famous Harley Street.
I eventually came to understand that a ‘physical disability’ could affect more than just the body. It affected my whole psychology, mental and emotional being at a time and age where my view of the world, abilities and aspirations were being shaped. My drive for wanting to be as physically equal as everyone else both alienated me from a normal social, working and personal life and then propelled and programmed me to find alternative solutions to simple things most would take for granted. This helped me find balance in myself, the world at large and help others with their balance issues.
I could talk for weeks on the affects of disability and how I overcome these challenges, and the many ways in which we can all create balance in ourselves, whether you are disabled or not, and more.
Though as I write it leaves me wondering about the abundance, richness and colorful life experiences I’ve led as a result of being knocked over at the very beginning of my adolescent life… I ask myself if I would’ve become the powerful healer that I now am? Would I have learned about massage or health n fitness to the levels I possess, teach and share successfully with others? Would I have chosen a path of self-employment had it not been for the numerous knock backs from employers because my physical condition wouldn’t allow me to work without pain even though I quickly mastered whatever task was placed before me?Would I have left school without any qualifications had my exams not been disturbed by countless operation dates? Would I have ventured into lifestyles that many seem to glamorize and get caught up in the cycle of with no obvious or easy way out? Would I be the person I am today with the life experiences I now have if I didn’t leave the ghettos of south London for a taste of the clean country air? Would I be in this place of power where my life experiences can help and benefit so many others?
I can’t really answer that question because, if everything happens for a reason good bad or ugly, then my reason for being exactly where I am right now has more significance for part of my purpose now, than ever before being that I have been granted with new beginnings on all levels.