I knew I wanted this blog to be about three major things: History, education and disability. However, those are pretty big areas and I have being trying to decide what to do my first blog on. Reading information in the news and making connections on twitter (which is highly addictive thanks @the familypatch a.k.a my sister) I am drawn to the impact of poverty and hidden disabilities on the lives of others. I have a threefold experience of these, from personal experience, as a teacher and as a historian (viewing their historical developments).
I have two (and a bit) ‘hidden’ disabilities which can make my life difficult. When you look well, people assume that you are well, when in actual fact many ‘well’ looking people can be struggling to appear ‘normal’ and live a ‘normal’ life. A ‘hidden’ disability can be a long-term health condition, a mental illness or a learning disability. I have Joint Hypermobility Syndrome a generic health condition that affects the collagen in my body. I also have dyslexia (although I have very good coping mechanism for this now and most people are surprised to learn this given that my English is pretty good after years of effort).
I read an interesting article on how people with autism and professionals cannot agree on one acceptable way of describing those that have autism. I use the term a person with …. This is not just political correctness. It is because as a person with JHMS and dyslexia I do not want to be just defined by those conditions. Yes, I am a person with dyslexia but I am not just a dyslexic person. Yes, my hidden disabilities affect my everyday life but they do not define me. I have lots of other identities. I am a sister, a daughter, a friend, a godmother, a teacher, a historian, a bookworm. I am passionate, caring, kind, loving, forgetful, clumsy & silly.
In short I am uniquely me and that is a good thing.:-D