Letter to my younger self

Tim, 62

Well hello! I know you are expecting words of wisdom but I doubt that will happen so perhaps let’s look at the experience gained over many years. I know that life hasn’t been perfect there were many missed opportunities to experience a fuller life. I experienced much doubt and lacked the courage to attempt things, please don’t do that.
Life is full of surprises so grasp each day with a vengeance and enjoy.

You have a disability, what do you know about it? Probably not much. Well it is time you found out. I’m not saying this to make you despondent but to educate you so that you can have that fuller life.
Get used to the word “disabled” and be proud
Always do your best. Do not be afraid to fail, everyone fails at something and in failure we learn and carry on. Yes, you have limits, we all have limits, but be the best you can be within those limits.
You will meet detractors and those that treat you as inferior. Those that seem to gain enjoyment from your discomfort. You are better than them. You will need support. So here is the big thing… FRIENDS.

Friends are your buddies through thick and thin. When you are having a bad day they will understand. Yes you will have some truly awful days, there is no sugar coating this, so be prepared. Your friends are your community.
Keep your friends close because as you get older you will need those friends. Go out of your way to create friendships, they will lift you up. Friendships are the greatest gift anyone can give and with friendship comes LOVE, a defining experience.
You are unique, make the most of your life through your uniqueness. Your uniqueness creates innovation as you will strive each day to overcome your limitations.
The word of the day is HAPPY. I think the saying goes “smile and the world smiles with you” and many days that is not easy.
If you can travel, go and see the world, experience the joys and wonders that are on offer. It is a remarkable world. It is your world.
I recently read a letter by Aubrie Lee and I doubt I can end this any better than what she wrote-

“To a younger me, and to any disabled child of this world: You are beautiful, you are powerful, you are perfect”.

Remember to love yourself for who you are.

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