In March 6th this year 2015, Mr. Diego Rivera posted this at Facebook. A friend of mine that I have wrote something about here tagged me just today and it’s only now that I have known of this. My friend says she feels very sad for the kid for having a hard time eating (yet managed to finish the serving on her own). I would love to know this kid more and talk about her here. I hope this post will inspire more people to treat us better and to respect our rights and privileges in the society. Through this, my friends and I hope to stop discrimination, promote social awareness, and rally for equal opportunities (particularly with employment) for people with disabilities.
We call them freaks. We pay money to see them make fools of themselves.
We make fun of them as if their feelings don’t count. As kids, we harass them the first
chance we get. Because we have no tolerance for the askew, the crooked, the odd and
the physically gross or absurd. We think of them as non-human. Maltreatment and
injustice are only a common form of torment. .. (in this era wherein ‘beautiful’ is
defined by the perfection as to physicality, elegance and sophistication,and largely
depends on the carats of gems on the bejeweled class of the society where the rich and
the famous choke on over dosage of fame and overwhelming wealth).
In an age and time where everything gets fixed or “converted” into
something new and beautiful (at the right price) in the ultimate quest for the
preservation of youth and for aesthetics’ sake, some of us born rather ‘differently’ seems
to have been thrown in the backstage. Amidst the clamor and din of this fast and furious
rat race, these least of our brethren have been, since time immemorial, considered
We tend to forget that amongst us, between the living and the dead, there
thrives a breathing, feeling faction of our race that silently, in the shadows, desperately
struggles to outlive a cruel, indifferent civilization where only the best, the brightest
and the most able have the privilege to rise up and hear the bells.
What does it mean to be congenitally defective today? True, more and more
consideration for the physically disabled and/or “special people” have never been better
with the rise in growing social awareness for the physically challenged members of our
society. Special seats, lanes, marked lavatories, especially designed walkways and
tracks, custom- made prosthetics, gadgets and what-have-yous became commonplace in
our feeble attempt to show them we care and that they count.
Truth is, these attempts are just to quench the guilt deep inside us. We
should be convicted and hanged for enjoying so much while they suffer in the shadows,
out of the limelight, unwillingly bathing in shame at the mercy of the bonds of
insecurity, hopelessness, envy and hate-forever stuck, forever needy and forever
irrelevant and useless. We should be fined and punished for the awesome feeling after a
nature trail hike where we got the chance to bask in the glory of seeing the world from a
different light and being able to fully experience all of its wonders. We should be
tortured and made to suffer for the awesome sights and sounds that travel makes
In the end, nothing can ever make up or suffice even, for the feelings of
deprivations and the pain and suffering of the physically unfortunate. These are beyond
reimbursement. Nothing can ever make up for the torment, grief and the sorrow that
inability and disability gift wraps them with at birth.
But everything gets to be alright
when we are loved. The world seems better, brighter. To quote anew, LOVE is the KEY.
Special people, like the mentally retarded and the physically disabled, in the olden days, were considered second class citizens who ought to keep out of sight. Despicable and shameful, they were treated like animals, left to rot in oblivion to live out their lives in misery and suffering. Whether they are indeed accidents of nature, borne of the scourge of the gods, or some kind of genetic anomaly, one thing is for certain: it’s not their fault how they turned out to be.
It has been a long time that I have been messing with the web, but it never occurred to me to seek out people with the same condition, or to even just research about it. Having been born with a congenital defect, at 37 years old, it was just last week that I decided to explore the world where one-half of me is an endemic inhabitant.
Initially, I surfed, read, followed links, to no avail. My oddity, so to speak, cannot be found. Images, images, images- my eyes watered and I burnt candles for nights-but, nada. The gross and the macabre were in front of me (thank God I only have this kind!); my heart broke to see worse persons than I am.
Browsing for images yielded no positive result, so I turned to reading until my eyebags got swollen and my eyes bulged like burbots‘. It’s so elusive- there must be something! What, I’m not even among the categories and types? Later, I realized that I had a hard time because I wasn’t using the right tags. But how could I, since I myself was at a loss as to what my deformity was called like!
Finally, I got to Adams-Oliver Syndrome and then eventually to Amniotic Band Syndrome. I could fit in to either of them, but I still need more time to delve deeper. One fact, though; whichever syndrome I get to ‘fit in’, I am the only one with this kind of foot defect. For, NO TWO CASES ARE EVER ALIKE.
Consequently, I will be spending more time learning about my deficiency. Prior to last week, I’ve never encountered both syndromes before. I guess I didn’t really give much thought to my defect as much as I should have, in my feeble attempt to ‘belong’ with the masses. Nevertheless, I’m grateful for having had such understanding family and friends to have had the chance to be considered ‘normal’ in spite of what I truly am.
For that, I am very grateful; and I feel truly blessed.