I think I’ve always been a writer in a sense. I’ve always been a storyteller. It’s genetic. My aunts are storytellers so I learned from them. I retold their stories and then I told my own.
I started writing when I decided to become rich and famous. I wanted to be part of telling good stories so I wrote the stories I wanted to tell. However, it never occurred to me to become a writer.
When I started writing online the last thing I wanted to write about was my health. Cerebral Palsy doesn’t have the most positive reputation in the public eye so I wrote about anything but that.
In 2008 I was looking at major orthopedic surgery so when I sat down to write that’s all I wrote about. I wasn’t living much else and I wanted to put my experience out there as a catharsis. I didn’t care if anyone ever read it, and very few people did.
Then one day a blogging friend who has a child with special needs sent me a link to another blog by a mom of another special needs child and asked for my thoughts. I typed out a quick response and left a longer comment on the blog itself.
And as they say, the rest is history.
I never set out to be a health blogger. I’m still not too convinced that I am one. But when almost all the personal accounts you find about your condition are one sided (or clearly incorrect) you can’t help but say something for “your kind.”
What got me started was writing my own posts in response to other peoples’ posts. It was a great starting point that got me thinking about I thought people should know or what I thought they’d want to know.
There aren’t many Cerebral Palsy blogs out there. That is there aren’t many blogs out there written by people who have CP themselves; most are parents of children with Cerebral Palsy. We exist; it’s just a minority of a minority.
There’s another reason why I write about my health. I’m a female who has Cerebral Palsy. Being a girl and growing up is hard, being a girl with Cerebral Palsy is like being in a cornfield. You think other people are out there, you just can’t find them.
I would’ve preferred to be in the background and watch but with a lack of voices out there I can’t do it. I can’t sit back and let others like me think I’m not right there with them.
*A similar version of this post was written on April 1, 2013
I’m participating in WEGO Health’s Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge. If you want to find out more about Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge visit their blog, Facebook, Twitter. You can find more posts by searching #HAWMC.