By Nicky Almeida
Having a disability is definitely difficult, but it’s also one of the richest classrooms lessons another human can experience, too. While these learning experiences are more profound experienced directly, there are some special tokens of wisdom, knowledge and insight we can pass along. There are life lessons to be learned from anyone and everyone in life. Here are my top 5 that changed my life forever.
1. When in doubt try it out.
People with disabilities learn so much throughout their lives; life lessons that able-bodied people rarely get to experience. Life does not stop, it time to tap into your other gifts and talents. Display courage to try new things. Be open to new experiences. Coping with limitations and overcoming new challenges will be hard. The burden will feel a lot lighter if you allow yourself to experiment with new possibilities. Let family and friends help you discover new interests. You don’t need to give up your independence, you can still live a very fulfilled and empowering life.
2. Doctors Don’t Know Everything
Medical professionals have great skills that need to be respected, but they don’t have all of the answers. You know yourself, and your family understands you. Seek input from individuals who know you well and stick to your own intuition and faith. Dig deep and keep moving forward. Things will get better. Trust your inner compass, trust your inner strength, it’s your body, believe in yourself and no one else.
New advancements are being made in technology and research every day, and these developments can allow you to live life without giving up the same conveniences you had before.
3. Don’t live up to other’s expectation
Many people will underestimate your inner strength and will have significantly smaller expectations of you due to your injury or impairment. Ignore them. There is a hero inside of you waiting to rise to this occasion. Take time every day to concentrate on yourself and your health. Sometimes that just means sipping a cup of tea in the morning, sitting quietly in prayer or meditation, give thanks and acknowledging the progress you have made no matter how small.
If you had to give up one of your favorite hobbies due to your disability, pick up a fresh one! Accept your disability and move on. Focus on discovering new things, new adventures you can do instead of focusing on what you cannot. Remember to be grateful, count your blessings always it could have been much worse. Develop and maintain your positive outlook daily. The more that we go with the flow, the happier we will be. I find that many people living with a disability are more chilled out about the small things in life.
4. Your disability does not define who you are – you are loved.
Make peace with yourself as soon as possible. Give yourself time to heal. Handle the realization that you won’t have the ability, to accomplish all of the things you might have wanted due to your physical limitations. From the nature of your case, you’ll get to know fun,loving & talented people just like yourself in fascinating and significant ways. A number of your friendships will be profound. Show gratitude for these opportunities to be lifted up and lift others up too. You pretty much have a free-for-all card to be exactly who you are & want to be around them. Embrace these new friendships and the outpouring of love you receive. This will be one of the most freeing feelings ever. You don’t need to fit in to feel good about yourself or to think you belong. You belong to yourself, you know this. And that feeling is amazing.
5. When the going gets tough, the tough get going.
I want to share this poem with you as it changed my life forever.
The Faith That Moves Mountains by Winifred Emma May
When you know not where to turn,
stay still, just where you are.
There is something yet to learn.
Be careful lest you jar the threads that
fate is weaving in a pattern you can’t see.
Trust the Hand that works the looms of destiny.
Though it is your wish to set things right
and put things straight,
Choose the wiser way.
With patience watch and wait.
There’s a purpose in it all,
as time will surely prove
And when you least expect it, you will see the mountain move.