Hello. My name is Chloé, the creator of DisabilityMe.
DisabilityMe came to life when, during some of the hardest experiences of my life, I was left with the realisation that we still have a way to go in creating a world of equal opportunities and free of stigma for those affected by mental health, disability and chronic illness. We have already come so far, but where do we go from here?
I was born with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome: type 3, a hereditary disease which causes chronic pain and frequent dislocations throughout the body.
Some years ago, I was involved in an accident in which I fractured, compressed and herniated 3 of my spinal discs and the full impact of what my body could and couldn’t do hit hard, as I was left unable to walk for a time or even sit up by myself.
Thanks to those around me, friend, family, doctor, nurse, I adjusted to my disabilities, I live a wonderful life and have embraced them.
They give me strength and a set of qualities completely unique to myself.
Despite the many, many people who believe I should limit myself and my life to prevent more injuries, stop adventuring, stop running and jumping and dancing; I won’t.
I want everyone to feel that way.
Not everyone gets the chance too.
Throughout the years, the hospital trips and treatments, I have had the honour of meeting some of the people who have not been as fortunate in their health and situations, as well as the professionals who dedicate their lives to supporting and helping them.
The strength, courage, laughs and tears of these connections are what has lead me here today.
Some of those stories already have their endings.
I lost my mother to heart disease several years ago. My idol in life, she always taught me to fight the bad times and appreciate the good.
I want to share our stories and interact with like-minded groups and people who want to connect and help lead the discussion on how we can help enable those affected by mental health, disability and chronic illness overcome the barriers which prevent many from leading wholesome, fulfilling lives.
And so, DisabilityMe is born.