I notice a lot of people post to Facebook daily during the month of November, with things they are thankful for. That got me thinking about my "Disability Thinking" blog, and how generally negative it is. For awhile, it felt good to be an unshackled complainer rather than a booster, but I think maybe the balance has gotten out of whack. Thanksgiving might be a good time to start working on that. So, here it goes:
I’m thankful that my disabilities have for the most part not included chronic pain.
I’m thankful that I was born with my disabilities, which means I never had to go through the traumatic period of loss, adjustment, and even identity crisis that people do when they acquire their disabilities later in life.
I’m thankful that I was born into a progressive, loving, supportive family that never did or said anything to seriously undermine me, either intentionally or inadvertently.
I’m thankful that my family had the financial resources to provide me with a plentiful childhood, a great education, and a financially secure start in life.
I see that these are mostly about difficulties I haven’t had to cope with. It doesn’t mean that I think my life would have been horrible or impossible if things had been otherwise. It doesn’t mean that I pity or devalue people who can’t be thankful for these things. I'm pretty sure they've got things they are thankful for that I can't claim. I guess what it amounts to is that for better or for worse, I am thankful … on average … for who I am and turned out to be.