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By Taking a Risk I Found My Community And So Much More

After learning about my disability at 16 years old, I waited about a year to let all the information I received from the consultation with my doctor sink in and process in my head.

That next year, I turned 17. The idea of wanting to come out publicly as a person with Cerebral Palsy was in the back of my mind constantly, but I wasn’t quite ready for it yet and was trying build the courage and strength in myself to do so. It was not easy by any means whatsoever. I was scared, nervous and anxious about what would happen and where it would take me when I felt ready to come out publicly.

That time eventually finally did come. In July of 2016, I decided it was time. No matter how hard or painful it would be. I didn’t care where it would take me good or bad. I decided it was time to come out publicly as a person with Cerebral Palsy and I was ready to take that risk!

But wait, there was only one problem though:

I didn’t even know where to turn to or who to go to come out into the public in the way I wanted to I kept asking myself over and over in my head,” Where do I go and who do I turn to.”

God or somebody must’ve heard me. The next day, I was just scrolling around Facebook like normal. I spotted a women’s blog on disabilities and other things being shared all over Facebook. People were raving about how great and informative her blog was. My gut told me to go look at it, so I did.

When I looked at this women’s bio, I saw she had CP like me and she was a little older then me, but that didn’t bother me at all. I reached out to her, introduced myself and asked to do an interview for her blog which she agreed to. I was extremely happy about that for sure!

The next month the interview went live. I looked at it and my first thought was, “What the heck did I just do?” I got so anxious seeing it up there I wanted to have it taken down because I didn’t know how viewers would react to it or take it.

I didn’t take it down though…I kept it up there and didn’t care one-bit what kind of comments I would get.

When I saw all the positive comments and feedback I was getting regarding the interview, it made me feel warm and happy inside, and I had the biggest smile on my face!

It pushed me to want to do more with CP and become an advocate to spread awareness for it.

Little did I know, doing that interview would open so many doors and opportunities for me as an advocate. I also had no idea my life would be changed for the better in so many amazing ways!

I would find my community.

I would meet and connect with so many other parents raising children with CP.

And who knew that just year after doing the interview, the most life changing thing would happen to me……

I would be pushed to become a published writer. Then, just after graduating High School my first ever published story would be going live in a few days.

Being able to work with so many other talented writers every day has been a big blessing and privilege.

A lot has happened 2 years after doing my coming out as a person with CP interview, but I wouldn’t change the ride for the world!

Readers, take those risks that scare you and do the things in life that scare you! No matter how difficult big or small the things may be. I did and like I said I wouldn’t change it for the world! You never know where the risks may take you.

Want to read my interview? Click here!

Juliana Ruggiero

Juliana is 18 and fresh out of High school. She graduated with High honors. Writing is something she really enjoys doing and everyone that knows her tells her she has a gift for it. Juliana is a hopeless Italian food addict, loves meeting new people and making new friends. She is very laid back and easy going. Juliana is here to inspire everyone and give it her all. She doesn't have a bad bone in her body. Her career began in July of 2016 after reaching out and offering to be interviewed for The Abler Blog. Since that interview, after seeing all the positive feedback she was getting from everyone, it pushed her to do more with her writing! Pushing herself to do more has lead Juliana to some of the most kind and supportive people she could ask for! She is grateful that she took that "leap of faith."

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