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  • PH Columnist Discusses Acceptance & Disability Pride

    Posted by christie on July 28, 2022 at 5:00 am

    Pulmonary hypertension columnist Mike Naple shared this piece last Disability Pride Month, hitting on a lot of the nuances of coming to accept and identify as a disabled person. He discusses feelings of pressure to not be disabled in society, and how people perceive him differently when he uses a nasal cannula–a visible cue to others of his illness.

    As he grapples with ableism in the workplace, and in his personal sphere, Mike also recognizes a deep resonance with “disabled” as an identity. As someone who had a slow entrance into disability–not a “physical detonation” as he puts it–Mike has found the journey to acceptance to be one of finding the language to associate with his feelings and the courage to claim space in the world as a disabled man. 

    What language helps you to understand and explain your disability to yourself and others? Do you feel like you suffer from internalized ableism? How can we be more compassionate to ourselves and others in their disability/chronic disease journey?

    christie replied 1 year, 7 months ago 2 Members · 2 Replies
  • 2 Replies
  • joeb

    July 28, 2022 at 5:34 pm

    It took couple weeks to accept IPF as an added condition to my life. With my doctor a plan was put together about what we would do now,later and future. With a plan comes understanding and acceptance. At first I would pay attention to peoples reactions to using portable oxygen some negative some pitiful. But after a few weeks unless someone stopped me for questioning I stopped noticing reactions. This means my acceptance had strengthened. It’s been over five years and IPF is so part of my life that it’s submerged into my daily life style. Acceptance is the psychological hump you have to master to go forward with your style of life. Thanks for your writing.

    • christie

      July 28, 2022 at 7:05 pm

      Thanks for sharing @joebwharton, I think a solid plan always helps to relieve anxiety, at least, which can be a barrier to acceptance. Knowing what the next steps are and having plans in place to keep doing “the next best thing” as they say keeps you moving forward.

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