It’s a new dimension. It’s going to turn everything you thought you knew about disabilities of all kinds on its head. If you’re reading this and have a disability, the IZ will turn everything you thought you knew about yourself on its head. I know, because I’ve been there.
If you read my brief profile, you know I have cerebral palsy (hereafter known as CP to save myself keystrokes). 🙂 I have what is probably one of the mildest cases on record, mild enough that some people actually forget I have extra letters attached to my identity. Or are they attached?
Until a few months ago, I would’ve said yes, they are. CP is part of my identity–it actually is my identity–and to say otherwise is to be in denial. “People-first language” is another form of political correctness, and there is no reason to question services like therapy, aides, and special education, even and especially if I myself never needed them (because if I didn’t need them, what did I know?)
Well, I entered the Independence Zone (in part because of a display on people-first language at the university where I’m getting my second Master’s), and my paradigm shifted. Actually, it did a complete 360, shattered, and was put back together–or at least, it’s coming back together. I’m going to share that story with you. And because I now know I am not a disability, but a person first, I’ll share other things with you, too.
More to come…for now, buckle up, make sure you’re wearing your helmet, and prepare for the first drop in the roller coaster: the upcoming post It’s Not P.C., and it’s Not C.P., Either.