Disability — it’s a word that makes every other deaf person I know cringe, anger boiling in them as they protest the label being applied. They are separate from those people, they can do anything but hear, they are not limited by deafness. They see the word disability as a scarlet letter, as it if were a slur negating anything positive.
The summer after I left high school, I finally got over my self consciousness and asked my grandmother if I could have her old cane. Her knee surgery had made it too difficult to use it any longer, so she used a walker. The old, claw-foot mobility aid was bestowed upon me, and I quickly wrapped it in rainbow duct tape I had bought from a nearby dollar store.
Slipping knee braces on seemed to push in all the throbbing in my legs that meant walking was a challenge…
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