My name is Harriet. Up until I was 9 years of age I was the type of child that would want to be on the move 24/7. My main objective was scaring my parents to death with all my sporting activities and mischief. However, at the age of 9 my world changed. This is when I became disabled. My disability was no-ones fault, it was just one of those things.
For the last 10 and a half years I have lived with a neurological condition which has left me with many problems, including bladder problems, impaired sight and becoming a neurological paraplegic. The newest of all the problems has been becoming semi-paralysed in my left arm. Though doctors are still baffled by what my disability is or what caused it, over the years the illness has been stable and then gotten worse and then become stable again. There have been many tests and investigations which have knocked me down. However, once I have been knocked down, I refuse for it to keep me down, and subsequently get back up and fight even harder.
One of the things which helps me get through whatever this disability is, or as I like to call it ‘Harriet Little Syndrome,’ is sport. Sport has had a big impact on me both mentally and physically over the years. Thanks to sport I have been able to meet some amazing people and do some amazing things. As well as sport, I have used volunteering work to aid me through my disability. My feeling is that if a charity has helped me then I want to give all I can back.
The last 10 years of living with the unknown, has had its highs and its lows. However, if I’m able to help guide or inspire another young person in the same situation as me, then its all worth it.
I am currently at university, and have already started to inspire and make a change for the better in peoples lives. The degree I am doing at uni is Sport, Coaching and Physical Education. This degree has never had a disabled student before. So as well as them teaching me, I am having to not only teach my lecturers but also my peers. Even though I’m in a wheelchair and have a disability I’m still able to do all what they can. The overall battle with universities and disabilities has just begun, but its one which future disabled students coming through will help change for the better!
So, this is just a very quick introduction about myself and a teaser of what future articles will be about.