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Embracing impairment

May 22, 2012

I finished the first draft of a powerpoint presentation regarding disability studies and the social model of disability yesterday.  The presentation is for my co-workers.  I want to share how shifting my perspective on impairments and disability is helping me to shift my practice.  I want to inspire some of my co-workers to consider doing the same.

I shared this presentation with my occupational therapy student today.  She told me about the video that I am going to try to embed in this post.

http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/en/aimee_mullins_the_opportunity_of_adversity.html

I am considering just showing this video of Aimee Mullins rather than using my presentation.  Ms Mullins says that technology may be “revealing what has always been true.  Everyone has something rare and powerful to offer our society.”  I believe that about every child with whom I work.  My ‘real’ job as a child’s occupational therapist may be to help that child to see their beauty.  To see what makes them rare.  To see their power.  To see what they have to offer society and then to assist them to offer it.  My ‘real’ job is probably that I see it so that I can counter those of us who intentionally and unintentionally disable them.

This video says so much of what I want to say so much more eloquently.  Please watch it and tell me what you think.

Sheila

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