At the end of the week, I am turning 20 however, before I look forward to the third decade I wanted to reflect on my last decade and talk about what I’ve learnt. I was debating discussing everything that I’ve learnt in the past 20 years but then I realised that it was only around the age of 10 or a bit before when I started to understand a bit more about what having a disability meant (I was actually 9 in this cover photo but it looked cute). Not only this if I did the whole 20 year’s I think we’d be here a while, we all know I ramble at times.
If I could have a conversation with my 10-year-old self now I would have a lot to tell myself about my disability, I’d probably overload myself we all know I can talk for England. But in all seriousness, I wish I had the perspective now of my disability at 10 because it would have made my life a little easier. On the other hand, I don’t because I’ve never hated my disability I just used to get a lot more frustrated at it. I guess there’s a pattern to most things, for example, bereavement. If I was born as someone who was never fazed by her disability than who to say that it wouldn’t have affected me later? They’re still good days and bad days, however knowing what I know now and having the attitude I do these bad days are certainly less bad.
But I think the biggest thing I want to tell myself is too keep, on going and be motivated. For example, I always believed that I was never the most academic in school and I’m not saying that now I am, but this belief came from the sets I got put in and the environment. But, now looking back I am better academically than I ever gave myself credit for-story time… When I started secondary school I was put into the lower ability sets, only until a year later I got moved up and one teacher turned around to me and said: “I’m so sorry Georgia, we judged your academic abilities based on your disability”. At the time I was shocked but also a bit smug in the nicest possible way, and if I was to talk to my 10-year-old self I just said work hard, stay motivated because it’ll all be worth it in the end.
At 10 I did start noticing the gap between myself and my peers and it is hard because I couldn’t do my work fast, I’d always need a scribe and one-to-one but what’s that matter because without that input I wouldn’t be where I am today. If my primary school one-to-one is reading this, I love you! My one-to-ones at secondary were also amazing but my primary one-to-one had such a big impact on my life!
Yeah, I stood out and got more support but the one thing I’ve realised in this past decade is that I deserved that support and it’s taken me a long time to realised that but now I no longer feel guilty.
On the flip side of this, I would also like to tell myself that at times it can be tough, and as positive as you try to be, they’re days where insecurities get the better of you. Teenage insecurities, insecurities about university and placement and the biggest one being relationship insecurities. But it’s okay everyone has insecurities disability or not. The teenage insecurities are hard as I’ve already mentioned the gap between peers gets bigger and they’re nights when I cried myself to sleep as all I’ve ever know changed; that’s life and I can now say at 20 I’ve never had so many friends. School friends, university friends, friends from CP Teens up and down the country and friends through social media, the list is endless, I’m a lucky girl!
Now I have different insecurities- when I was in my teenage years it was more about friends and friendships whereas now, I’m 20 I have more insecurities about relationships that, to be honest, I’m still not ready to share. But what I would tell myself is not to get too worked up over that- I never really did as a teenager it’s more so now but I would still tell my teenage self not to worry and just be focused because now I don’t even have time for a relationship even if (though) I want one. Side note, if you follow me on Twitter you will know that this is something I don’t talk about as much as I should, but I’ve skimmed over it in this blog so baby steps.
Lastly, everything is a battle, so I’d tell myself not to give up and be determined! I mentioned this before in my blog about Unexpected Battles (which was also my birthday blog last year, maybe there’s a theme here). But even when it gets hard just keep going because the ending will be more than worth it (this attitude is not always the best though and this is why I’ve not written a relationship blog but hey I’m not that bad). All jokes aside whatever challenges I have faced the end result is always worth it!
Thank you for reading,