Monday, December 19, 2011

Disabled persons are not freaks

When a differently-able child comes into this world, parents go through traumatic experience. There are lots of blame games played by close family members and friends, most of the time, mother is blamed for conceiving not-so-normal child. Because of such pressures from society, guilt sets in and mother goes through bouts of depression. She may be forced to give up her social life, personal commitments, her job and other activities to give full time attention to her child.

Lucky are those who get family support and help her pass through the first hurdle of shock and put her on route to acceptance, to help her to accept her child as he is and to think about how best to adjust to such disability, and move on.

Because disabled children are not freaks to be pitied, accommodated or ignored while planning a difficult task, they are also humans who are simply differently able

Some parents are too clingy and protective to their child. They won’t allow their child to grow and be independent. When Harpeet Kaur was admitted to our school SBP-School for Mentally challenged, her mother carried this 11-year-old child to school and we believed that she could not walk. But after month, I was surprised to see her strolling in the school compound. She had overcome her fear of falling and was inspired to follow her class mates.

The differently able person can do wonderful things if given an opportunity. All they need is understanding and compassion, we just need to stand close enough to offer help but far enough to allow the child to spread its wings.

At only five years old, Shayaan Qureshi has come up the perfect response to the many people who stare at him - a big, toothy smile.
"I just look straight at people and smile," said the little Bahraini resident, who was born without arms. "I tell them I don't have hands but I can do everything."
Shayaan has dysmelia, a rare,congenital upper-limb disorder. His family was recently in Dubai to meet a support group for people with special needs and their relatives.

 I had met Malini at Oxford Book Stall few years ago when I had attended Caferati Read-meet. She communicated with me through typing in her machine and I was amused by her sense of humor. I admired the way she has conquered Cerebral Palsy and is the crusader for rights of disabled persons.  She has been awarded the national Award as a role model by the Ministry of Social Justice.

Did I have my own personality? Was I just another disabled girl who needed things done for her? I knew that I was different and trapped in a dysfunctional body, but did others realize I had a spirit and a mind separate from this body? My body did not work like others, but did they realize that my mind was normal? Did they consider thinking that my desires were just the same as theirs? Writes Mailni in her book titled ‘One Little finger’

And how can we ignore Stefen Hawkins?

Neither can we ever forget our famous singer Steve Wonders who sang “I just called to say I love you, and I mean it from the bottom of my heart…”

Wonder is presented the Gershwin Award for Lifetime Achievement by United States president Barack Obama

Once the differently abled people who are gifted with special talent are integrated into the mainstream, they are able to compete in the society and show their worth. It’s just the question of acceptance and will power.

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