It all started when…
I was nine years old. I had just been blindsided by a medical diagnosis that would change my life forever. I learned that I had a rare heart condition which soon worsened, causing organ failure. By eleven, my family and I faced the unthinkable: I would need a kidney and heart transplant. Through my weakened physical state and disease I was introduced to the complex world of having a hidden disability and the many challenges associated with my new identity.
I became inspired me to use my second chance at life to give back to my community through advocacy—But my health challenges didn't stop there. Nearly a decade after my first near death experience I was diagnosed with cancer. Subsequently, I became a wheelchair user. Like most people, I thought "This will never happen to me.”
But it did. Living with a visible disability meant I was subject to unequal treatment not just from racist or ableist prejudices, but by laws and institutions. I was motivated to become a disability rights activist because I believe we are more than just our disabilities; we are people first who deserve all the freedoms afforded to the the able-bodied. Whether it’s been for equal rights or my very own life, I have always been a fighter. Now, join me in fighting for a better America.