I may now be an adult and legally responsible for myself, but that in no way means that I am ready to be dumped like yesterday’s garbage on the curb and forced to face the world alone. Luckily, I have a great support system, that won’t happen. But for some disabled teenagers facing their eighteenth birthday, its a reality. And it is terrifying. I look into my future and I have a few years, some time to figure things out. These kids, and they are still kids, have mere months to file for disability, get insurance, find affordable housing, apply for colleges, go to school, work a job if they are physically able, all while maintaining their health and balancing doctors appointments with homework and treatments.
This may be more of a rant post than an actual blog post this time around, but I am seeing it more and more in my support groups now that the school year is coming to a close. I want y’all to know I see you. I want others to know that we are not pieces of trash you throw out just because we got “too hard to manage”. You are our friends and our family. You are supposed to believe in us, help support us through the times where we are unable to support ourselves. Even if that is mentally, physically, emotionally, or financially. We won’t take it for granted. We never do. We appreciate everything you do for us and we want to pay you back ten times over.
But right now we can’t. We are just starting our adult lives. We are fresh out of the gate, yet we are already behind. They say “Don’t let your disabilities hold you back”, but how can we do that when we can’t hold down a job and can barely graduate high school? We can’t do this alone. Not yet anyway. One day we will be strong, some of us will even be fully independent. But we can’t get there without a leg up, and that comes from you.