My name is Stacey. I’m a Georgia, USA, peach. I was born and raised in the metro Atlanta area. I am an academic. A political scientist to be exact. I was born with cerebral palsy. My incredible mama contracted listeria bacteria while pregnant with yours truly.
It is found in under cooked meat and imported cheeses. Mom didn’t eat a lot of meat, while pregnant, because it made her nauseous. She did eat plenty of imported cheese though. At the time, women were not told imported cheese was not a good idea if you were pregnant. A little over two months before full term, mom went into labor. The doctors tried to stop it, but her body was fighting to save itself by expelling me. We both almost died. In fact, the doctors told my parents to say goodbye to me.
I’m a fighter, clearly, and a literal miracle. I was diagnosed at a year old because I wasn’t progressing like others my age. The diagnosis? Spastic quadriplegia cerebral palsy. All that means, essentially, is all four limbs are in on the party and I have too much muscle tone. My muscles get really tight and it can be extremely painful. I have toddler like balance and get tired easily. For those reasons, I use a power wheelchair in my daily life… mostly. I have been driving since age 6.
People tell me I’m an inspiration. To that I say thanks, but no thanks. It makes me squirm. I’m just a woman who does her best to live her life in a manner God and everybody else who loves me are proud of. Today marks a leap of faith…A giant one. I’m jumping off a metaphorical cliff feeling nervous and happy. This journey is going to be interesting, to say the least, but I’m happy to be taking it. I hope you’ll come along.