For some reason, this seemed easier when I was a kid. I guess it was because I never thought about it much and that I was that, a kid. I did the same as the other kids. Maybe not as well, nor the same way, but I was not treated any differently than my brothers and sisters, or my friends. My parents and the other parents in the project, took the let him be; a “let him try” philosophy. They never put expectations on me and neither did I. Although I couldn’t always do everything. For example, I couldn’t do things like ice-skating, which I quit after trying to improve over three or four years without improvement. It was a great childhood.
It was during my teens, and high-school, when I first began to feel “different.” I had teachers who would tell me I couldn’t do this, or I couldn’t do that. Unfortunately, I began to listen to them, and I started even giving up trying. By the end of high school, I had low self-esteem, low confidence, and I suffered from depression because of the “woe is me attitude” and self-pity.
I cannot blame it all on others, after all, where would we be if we continued to blame others instead of taking the responsible for our own choices, and actions, or non-choices, or in-actions? No. I take ultimate responsibility for my life. I am the master of my actions and/or reactions to the events in my life.
Tragically, in my late teens to early twenties, I suffered from depression. I got ahead of me and I could not pass through this phase on my own.
After hit rock bottom, my family did a small intervention, and I sought assistance in the form of a government training programme called Vocational Re-Habitation Services (VRS). With me having a very mild case of CP, the program was a little too beneath me. I believe it was designed for persons with more impairments. It did; however, teach me word processing, it aided in my search for meaningful work, and it got my foot in the work force and some much need job experience (something I could not do on my own after the recession).
Overtime, my confidence grew. I returned to school got a degree, then a programming certificate, an IT job, and after I was downsized, I landed a government job, which allows me free time to write where I self-published my first book over a year ago.
I learned a lot of things about dealing with life (and it has nothing really to do with living my life with CP, although in my case that is a given). I learnt believe in myself; I learnt to try everything at least once. I learnt that if I wanted something badly, then I had to try harder either I would succeed, or I would fail. I learnt there is no shame in failing, if I gave it my all. I learnt to be positive because no one wants to be around a negative person.
I usually succeeded when I was confident, and I was positive. I leant that negativity never got me anywhere. Besides being negative never solves anything, so I remained positive.
As I said in the beginning of this page, “We might have our bad days, but most of them are good.” I do not know about you, but I am going to live my life as positively as I can.
—Robert Confiant 8 April 2017 (mod 25 March 2018)