Disability Pride

80489597_s copy_FotorYesterday was my first occasion participating in New York City’s Disability Pride Parade and I couldn’t have been more proud and inspired by the very best New York City has to offer as I marched with Mount Sinai Rehabilitation. As our joyous celebration wound its way through the city streets on a hot Sunday – 5,000 richly diverse human beings strong – we forgot the pounding sun as we shouted our disabilities from the rooftops.

“Disability Pride” teems with an inherent irony: Take pride in a lack of ability? Yes, we announce ourselves with pride and incite inclusion. What is more empowering than accepting – and loving – ourselves, imperfections and all? We puff out our chests in celebration of how we persevere…and more…notwithstanding our disabilities and of all we overcome amid the daily muck muddying but by no means devaluing our lives. Whether we’re wheelchair bound, deficient in sight, gait, hearing or speech, struggling with learning or mental deficit, suffering from a disability that is “hidden” or glaringly evident, we take heart in our robustness of spirit as we bend and sway but never break in response to the challenges we face and conquer.

I am Pamela Sloate. I have Dystonia and I’m proud!

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6 responses to “Disability Pride

  1. How awesome! My extended family could be a float. We have several rare disorders and many not-so-rare, like my PD and dystopia. Perhaps we should have a parade in Seattle.

    • Hello, I wish every city could have a Disability Pride Parade. I didn’t even know New York City had one until my friend invited me and at first I thought it must be the Gay Pride Parade. It wasn’t until I learned the Gay Pride Parade was 8 days ago that I realized I was participating in the Disability Pride Parade, and what a joyful experience – and so uplifting. It is my deepest hope the Parade comes to your city one day, perhaps you should contact the Mayor’s Office, which runs ours. Sending you my very best, -Pamela-

  2. Denise Gaskell

    I love you Pamela, you’re extremely inspiring to me! WTG!

    • Denise, I love you too and you should give yourself a great big pat on the back for all you do for the dystonia community. How have you been? I certainly miss my dear friend. My love to your husband. xxx -Pam-

  3. Yay, Pam! Love the expression ‘robustness of spirit’. Thanks once again for the inspiration :- )

    • Monica, always so lovely to hear from you and I hope life is treating you well. The Pride Parade was the true inspiration and my post practically wrote itself. Enjoy the summer months and please take care of yourself. Sending you lots of love. -Pam-

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