Peace be with you, Cerebral Palsy!
For almost thirty-two years, we have co-existed in the same body. You came into my physical body as an infliction from the devil—an attempt to steal my soul from God the Father. However, the Lord has used us to bring him glory. The devil’s attempt to make it difficult for me to move and speak clearly has only caused me to do things differently.
You make it difficult for new listeners to understand my speech, and yet the Lord has given me the gift of the written word. When it is too difficult to speak, I sit down quietly at my desk and type the thoughts that go through my mind too quickly for me to speak. Sometimes I get so frustrated from not being able to speak clearly all the time, which causes me to cry from being overwhelmed with feelings trapped inside. God has blessed me with the written word as a way to unlock those feelings and allow others to know my thoughts and ideas.
You make it difficult for me to move, and yet the Lord has blessed me with an electric wheelchair, adoptive technology, an accessible home, and supporting friends and family. The Lord still calls me to do his work, and through our suffering and blessings we are able to demonstrate his glory in the world. Even on days when we are battling each other, you are blessing me with knowledge, insights, and strength to use against the devil. For everything the devil with your help has take away from me, God has blessed me three-fold.
You, cerebral palsy, are only apart of me, not the whole me. I am also a Christian, a daughter, a sister, a cousin, an aunt, a New Testament scholar, a cyclist, a writer, an author, an advocate, a colleague, and so much more. The Lord has used you, cerebral palsy, and me to bless others. I am able to related to other with physical disabilities on a personal level. There is power in saying to an individual with physical a disability, “Yes, I understand what you are going through, and here is how you can overcome those limitations and frustrations.” I can also explain feelings, needs, and struggles to others who are not disabled to understand those of us with physical disabilities as whole individuals. There is power in saying to any individual, “This is how you can help me…” My ability to name the frustrations, needs, and joys of people with physical disabilities becomes a weapon against the devil, which I would not have without you, cerebral palsy.
Therefore, you, cerebral palsy, are a pun between the Lord and the devil. When others choose to view you as a curse, I view and use you as a blessing. Without you, cerebral palsy, I would not have been led down this path, at least not right away, as an advocate and a New Testament scholar. I would not understand pain and suffering as a constant battle. I would not have met half of my friends, especially those involved with adoptive sports or my personal caregivers because I would not need to know them. You, cerebral palsy, are a blessing, because you have given me a prospective on life that very few enjoy. Thank you for blessing me with your presence, even on days when we are battling each other.
Many blessings, E
PS. Let’s continue to kick the devil’s ass.