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Monday, 24 January 2011

The first few days as a disabled person in a mainstream world

I was born in 1981 into a world of uncertainty and of course a conservative government. Through the posts that follow I will talk about what it is like to grow up with a disability and the issues that I have had to deal with throughout my life. So how did my life start? I was my mothers second child and so she thought she knew what to expect. During her pregnancy she was sure there was something not quite right with her baby and as such she regularly told the doctors this. As was the case then my mum was told not to be so silly and that there was nothing wrong with her baby. This still happens now but with technology as it is now, this happens less frequently.

When I was born, my mum was proved right, as soon as I was born I was taken and put in an incubator. My mum at this point realised that she had been right all along and that I had Spina Bifida. My chances of survival were not good, only being given a few weeks to live. 30 years ago it was common place to put babies into care without a second thought. Within hours of me being born my parents were asked if they wanted me to be put up for adoption. As you can imagine, my parents had a lot to deal with at this time but one thing they did know was that they would never do that to one of their children. So their answer was obviously no, thankfully for me.

So . . . I survived longer than a couple of weeks, at which point it was decided that I should be given the operation to close the hole in my back, to prevent infection and limit any other problems that this may cause. After the operation (as a result of waiting) I then developed Hydrocephalus which meant that are shunt was inserted to drain fluid from the brain. (future blogs will include the problems this caused in my childhood). My parents were then told the likelihood was that due to my health problems I would not live past 5 years old, again I survived past this age and I am now here to tell the tale. This is a simplified version of my first few years which I will talk about in more detail later so please come back and follow my journey that I have made. 

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