Hi, I am Jack. I’m 24 years old, and I live in Essex, England. I was born with Spastic Diplegic Cerebral Palsy. I was born on the 28th of September,when I was meant to arrive on the 25th of December. I always say I didn’t want one set of presents. I weighed 1lb and 15 ounces, the same as a bag of sugar, for perspective. I never thought I would be writing this,well what a cliché opening line, but honestly I didn’t think I would be writing this as a blog post, because I had no intention of writing a blog. Sounds like a great start, but let me explain. I had an idea to make an Instagram page to share my experiences, because I had not seen any pages talking about Cerebral Palsy,however, now I see creating a blog was the natural progression. Here’s a little bit about myself. I attended mainstream education, all the way through all the way up to four years at University of Bedfordshire. I have a Masters degree in Physical Education and Sports Pedagogy. I have never let anything stop me in my life. I have built up resilience and confidence, I mean this is a display of that, putting this out there. I’m going to be upfront and honest, there are good days and bad days. While it all seems rosy, there are negatives too, after all, we are human. I have challenges just like everyone else, escalators, the London transport system, and carrying a cup of tea,which I’m still working on. I love sports and I believe physical education should be an inclusive and enriching experience for all. The power that physical education has can bring people together, it can create friendships, and teach strong values and morals. It also keeps you healthy. I love to travel and watch football; I’m an Arsenal fan. I also love wheelchair basketball and I played on the university team, University of Bedfordshire. I love music, mainly rock and metal, and anything with good lyrics. I want to enjoy life as much as I can, and if I can help others along the way, that will be the greatest part of my life. I work as a teaching assistant at a college in the South East of England, where I support students with additional needs on their own journey to find employment and life skills. I love making others happy. I love spreading positivity and feel that is one of my biggest qualities. I believe from time to time you are allowed to give yourself some credit and accept your disability. I want to share my journey of having Cerebral Palsy and hopefully help other young people, or at the very least, put a smile on a few peoples’ faces. Fair warning, I love quotes and will be posting some. I have built up a small, but growing group of followers on my Instagram account, which is called PositivelyCerebralPalsy (Shameless plug please give it a follow). Thank you to everyone who follows it already. I would say that I am an ordinary person, but I believe in the power of story and the shared experiences. I believe this has the power to create extraordinary results, and form connections that can hopefully change peoples’ lives. I have been lucky enough to see this first hand. I have given speeches at black-tie events talking about how sports has changed my life, the importance of inclusion, and the opportunity to break barriers down. I have had the opportunity to play sports that most able-bodied people can each day. What I want to achieve from this blog:
1. I want to help and share my success and challenges to help other people with Cerebral Palsy.
2. I want to give support to families if they are unsure about their young person and give my personal experience as a guide.
3. I want to create a community and spread positivity to make peoples’ lives happier. I want to say thank you to my amazing family and friends that have supported me through the good, the bad, the ugly, and everything in between. Without you, I wouldn’t be in this position; you are amazing and I love dearly. I hope everyone is ready for this adventure on whatever path it takes us. Wishing you all the best and sending positive vibes your way.