I am not someone who you might think of as living with disability. But I am someone who lives with disability, a hidden disability – Reactive Hypoglycemia.
Before I acquired this hidden disability, I – like many – took my independence for granted. I did what I wanted, how I wanted, when I wanted. Now every day I walk a blood sugar tight rope. I wobble along it hoping I won’t be tipped over the edge, and rendered effectively useless for the rest of the day.
1 in 5 of us will acquire a disability in our life
And I am one of them. My life has been flipped upside down over the last year, and will never be the same again. Every single decision I make – like the choice to see friends, exercise, go away, eat out – can become a challenge, and often a non-event, because of it. There are good days, and there are bad days. There are days when I hardly notice it, and days when I am next to defunct. It’s too easy to become frustrated by the chaos that silently reigns inside my body. Every day I work fiercely to make it a day where my body is on my side. Where I can push through and live a close to normal life as is possible.
That’s why I am shouting loud about Leonard Cheshire’s new hard hitting film “Journey to Independence”, and the launch of a new nationwide campaign ‘Together, Unstoppable’.
The 60′ film – created by award winning creative agency Don’t Panic and produced by Stink Films – takes us through the journey of one man’s recovery from accident to job interview. Focusing on the different stages of rehabilitation, the film aims to convey how people can be supported in each sequence of this story. To live, learn and work, and the monumental impact that such an experience has on an individual.
“Eight in 10 people living with disability weren’t born with it. Everyone will know someone, a friend or a family member, who has experienced this. It can happen to anyone and often is as a result of accidents, strokes, heart attacks or other health conditions” said Sonia Triki, Head of Individual Giving at Leonard Cheshire.
Supporting Journeys towards Independence
Leonard Cheshire’s new overarching strategy of ‘Supporting Journeys towards Independence’ details how they aim to support people living with disability. So they can live, learn and work independently.
Whether people are born with or acquire a disability, everyone has the right to live as independently as they choose, regardless of circumstance. Having the right support and understanding can make ALL the difference through what is often a very isolating and difficult experience. This is something I know only too well from my own personal journey. Living with a disability is one of the hardest things many people will have to face. That feeling of isolation, and people’s surprising attitudes towards you.
Live the life you choose
Thankfully, Leonard Cheshire is there to support them. They believe that everyone, whatever their ability, should get the same opportunity to live the life they choose. I do too.
Throughout the campaign, Leonard Cheshire will be asking the UK public to rally and support disabled people through this journey. You can do this by adding your names here and sharing their own stories. An amazing way to educate our society about disability don’t you think?
For disabled people, the hard work never ends. It’s time society worked harder for them.
Let’s join together in providing people living with disability with opportunity, choice and support, and all of the things so many of us take for granted in life. Because together, we are unstoppable.
What do you think of this campaign to raise awareness of people living with disability? Are you someone living with disability? Or perhaps someone close to you is? Do leave a comment and share.
*This is a commissioned post