Living (the early years)
I am in the middle of my fifth decade of life. I acquired my disability at the age of two and one half years old. Living with a disability is a mighty challenge for anyone.
My disability happened early in my life, so I have always been a member of the disabled community. Identification as a “person with a disability” is a relatively new development/stage of disability.
For most of my life, persons with disabilities were identified by the non-human nouns used to describe a condition or state of being: crippled, handicapped, physically challenged, differently abled, disabled, and many more names that are too objectionable to give ink.
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