I Was Born This Way, Part II

After my recent blog, “I Was Born This Way…Or Not”, I was very enlightened by all of the responses that I got. It is very intriguing how two people who live the same circumstance, living life with a disability, can have such opposite perspectives. The majority of responses I received were from those of you that were born differently-abled.

One comment in particular, really stood out to me.  Here is the response from Andrew Pulrang:

This is a tremendously important topic, though at the same time, I'd hate to see it become divisive. That said, as someone who has had physical disabilities all my life, I think one way of differentiating the two experiences is by picturing two kinds of mixes.

You know those dishwasher pods that have two or three cleaning substances kind of swirled together, but separately enough so you can see each one in its own segment? To me, that suggests how someone who acquired a disability might view how their disability mixes with the rest of their personality and life history... all together, but also somewhat separable.

Whereas, for me, it's more like water and Kool Aid after it's been vigorously stirred. Theoretically there are different substances, and you can imagine them as separate, but you can't actually ever separate them. I can think back at what my life might have been like without my disabilities, but then I find my imagined self is no longer me. I sometimes do wish the more inconvenient and painful aspects of my disabilities could be done away with, but then I have a hard time picturing who I would be anymore.

I think that's why many of us are ambivalent about the topic of cure and even prevention. In the abstract, yeah, these are worthy goals, but I have a hard time personally relating to them. If I were to suddenly acquire another disability ... say, lose my sight ... I bet I'd feel differently about that condition, at least for a good while.
Thanks for raising the question. It's interesting to read what others are saying. And so, another question begs: How would you deal with acquiring another disability?

Would it change your perspective?

To read the great comments on “I Was Born This Way” click here.

-Erika