Invisible in a visual world

Welcome, I wanted to share with you the amazing doors that have been opened in my life and the opportunities I have been given. I also wanted to tell you a bit about a struggle I’m dealing with because of those opportunities its what made me feel so inclined to do a blog about it.

First of all though, I think I should explain a little about me. I am a 22 year old male who lives with my parents with several rare diseases who had a stroke when I was 4 and the doctors told me I’d never live past 5. After the stroke they didn’t know if I would ever walk or talk again. Well, Now I’m proud to say I’m throwing, and making pizzas by scratch!

About three months ago I got a job at a place called Pizzability. It is a pizzeria that hires people of all disabilities, medical, developmental, or intellectual. Pizzability has literally changed my life. I went from a person who never thought he could make it in this world because of all my medical and developmental disabilities to one of the chefs at at Pizzability. Their specialty is not only to hire disabled people and teach us life long skills and how to make a sustainable income, but also they cater to the disabled customers with special utensils for people who need the additional support and they will blend up the pizza for people with g-tubes, it is wheelchair accessible etc. Pizzability just opened a new business called Brewability. It has the same owner, concept and everything, only its a brewery and we will be bartending, talking to people and developing our social skills while our managers teach us how to do everything to the best of our ability.

Anyways, back to the topic, and how it made me feel so inclined to write this post.

Since customers know my employer hires almost all disabled people, I’ve actually had people ask me to my face, “What’s your disability?” Now I’m very open and happy to answer that question, but it just makes me sad and breaks my heart a little bit because invisible disabilities are not understood in this world and there is very little awareness or education about invisible disabilities. Also I’m pretty open to share, but someone else may find it a bit rude to ask that. I’m comfortable with it because I want people to better understand Invisible disabilities, but know, not everyone is.

Yes. I don’t have Down syndrome and I’m not in a wheelchair, I can walk and I can talk so people don’t see me as disabled. Some people don’t even believe me when I say I have disabilties. It’s like I have to prove it. I really want and need people to understand that not everyone’s struggle is easily seen on the outside.

I’m sick and fighting rare diseases. Aree you supposed to make yourself look sick so people will believe you are disabled and not question you? If you don’t do life with me you may not see what is hard for me to do that is easy for others.

My thoughts on this issue. I don’t see any way around it. How are you supposed to make people believe you so they wont question your integrity? To be honest its just an issue that we will have forever i think the way around this is just believing the person. I mean why would anybody make up a disability? I would rather have no disabilities at all. I’d love to go to college and learn to drive, but I can’t. I have to live with my parents (I have a super sweet tiny house though) because I can’t take care of my medical needs. I need people to help me with them and need someone around to make sure I don’t get sicker or struggle to breath. I can’t eat like normal people because my stomach and intestines don’t work right. My parents bring me to work everyday because they are awesome and want me to have the fullest life and learn these amazing life long skills and how to make a sustainable living like a normal person. I think people just need to be more educated on knowing not all disabilities are visible. There ARE people who can look completely “normal” but have so many disabilities. You just never know! Everybody is fighting their own battle you cant always see it on the outside but you may find out by spending some time with them. Don’t just assume stuff! That’s what’s dangerous. Assuming is bad! We need to take time to understand each other and not judge so quickly.

So, that’s what I felt so inclined to say with this post: Don’t just assume peoples story, you have to realize that visible disabilities are not the only disabilities. Keep an open mind! Your not fighting their battle, so you can’t assume what you don’t know.

I’d also like to explain a little more about Pizzability and how it has literally changed my life so much. I went from a person with absolutely no hope for being a “normal” person to having this amazing job that teaches me these useful skills and my coworkers have truly become a second family. I LOVE them all so much they are all so positive, and that makes me positive! Brewability is the new sister company of Pizzability. It Is a brewery that will teach us even MORE skills and just open more opportunities and doors. Maybe even give others the idea that hiring people who aren’t like them is a good thing. We are so appreciative that we work really hard and love our jobs so much that we usually show up to work really happy. I have been working so hard to get better and better at my job. To constantly learn something new. The manager taught me how to flip pizza dough and two hours later I could actually do it without ripping the dough. Because of all my hard work, my first month they asked me to be the assistant brewer of Brewability. I’m so honored and excited that I’m going to learn something new. You know the day you stop learning is the day you die. I am SO happy my life is turning around and I am no longer defined by all my medical struggles but rather my abilities and hard work. This place literally changed my life for the good and i cannot tell you how happy I am! This is truly God working in my life. I went from depressed with just a few friends and really no hope of life getting better. I would sit and dwell on my pain, my job lets me distract myself from it. Before my job, I didn’t have a purpose. And now I do!

Please come visit me at Pizzability and Brewability! I’ll make you a pizza with love or pour you a beer with it, then I’ll introduce you to my new friends. I think you’ll really like them.

If you want to contact me about coming to see me, have any questions I can answer, or you want to tell me what you think about this all please comment down in the comment section and I’ll get back to you! Also if you have any ideas on how to spread awareness about invisible disabilities that would be amazing.

Thank you so much for reading this I hope it helped and if not I just hope you enjoyed reading! Please follow me and come back again. I hope to post more soon. PS: keep warm its getting cold outside 🙂

God Bless.