Cerebral palsy awareness

March is cerebral palsy awareness month. Cerebral palsy used to be a more publicised disability. There were yearly telethons and charity groups for cerebral palsy research. Now CP has been pushed away but it still affects thousands of people.

I have cerebral palsy due to hospital error. I have athetoid spastic quad CP. I cannot walk due to balance and sometimes my muscles do their own thing. My speech is affected. In my daily life, I need assistance in dressing, eating, transportation, getting in my wheelchair etc.

At home, I'm most independent on the floor. Thanks to a more accessible bathroom, I can get in and out of the shower, ŵash my hands (I have a lowered sink. My 5 year old loves this. ) A few years ago, I finally gained the strength and courage to pull myself up to use the toilet myself. However, I need help in public bathrooms.

I get in bed by crawling on a stool and then climbing on the bed. I need help doing my hair, brushing teeth and other personal care things.

I recently read that my CP is severe and the lifespan is age 40. I have a daughter so I really hope not. This is exactly why we need more funding for cerebral palsy. We need more doctors that specialize in CP. When you are over 18, finding adequate medical care for cerebral palsy is difficult. We still need therapy, care and direction.

CP is supposed to not get worse as we age. However, somethings are easier and some are harder. People with CP have so much potential if given the chance. I fought stereotypes and waited for technology to help me live. I dance, I play power chair hockey, I won Ms. Wheelchair PA twice, I'm a mother, I'm a partner, I have a Bachelors Degree in education, I am a public speaker, I'm an author, I'm a teacher.

Please don't give up on Cerebral Palsy. We have a voice and deserve the research too.


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