An anthology that everyone within the disability community, and the particular spaces I'm in have been talking about for a while now. Diversability: First Person Stories From the Twenty First Century is an anthology from more than 35 authors that identify as having a disability and/or impairment.
Growing up, I didn't see a lot of people with disabilities in the media and in books; this had a real big impact on how I saw disability as a whole and if I was really disabled. I didn't know I was different until the fifth grade when people started ignoring me and stopped including me in activities and social gatherings outside of school. This anthology highlights both the good and negative parts of living with a disability or even identifying as a disabled person. I believe that everyone is unique, and different in their own way, and that we as disabled people should have the same respect as our fellow non-disabled peers.
My favourite chapters
Here are two chapters that brought a jump to me, the first one is about Sky finding their way through the fashion world as it's in-accessible to disabled folks, and the second one is about Ellen finding how to love herself again after permanently injuring herself.
Radical Visibility: A Disabled Queer Clothing Reform Movement Mannifesto
Sky Cubacub (they/them) talks about their journey navigating the clothing industry as a non-binary disabled person. When Sky was 21 they stomach out of nowhere stopped, working so they had to start wearing adaptive clothes. They took some time off to recover from their injury when one of Sky’s friends suggested them to start their own clothing brand with no sizes and is accessible to everyone. Sky says, “Rebirth Garments is unique and it celebrates the non-binary experience, making it more visible. Rebirth fosters a community that makes a space for the self-identification of gender. Whatever it may be.” If you want to find out more about Sky’s brand, Rebirth Garments go and check out their website.
Six Ways of Looking at Crip Time
Ellen Samuels (she/her) Ellen continues to seek doctors for a cure. Despite her dignies she still fights for a cure as she suffers from her disability. Ellen explains that she looks at Cript Time as a time where she can jump back and forth into a non-disabled Ellen as well as the current Ellen, who is disabled. The Ti-chi instructor kept telling Ellen how to align her hips, she felt that something was wrong, but Ellen’s instructor wanted her to keep going. Only a few days after this session Ellen got a book, from her bookshelf, and she felt her hip separating from her body. Ellen thought she was getting better, but she was declining. Ellen was never able to walk as much as she could prior to her injury.
These two chapters really stood out to me in this anthology, as I can relate to both of them. If you've seen my Instagram or Facebook Page, you can see that I love clothes that aren't quote on quote "normal clothes". The funky and the groovy are things that I like. Secondly, I didn't really see myself as a disabled person growing up. It is only now that I identify myself as being disabled.
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