Here are a number of true situations about people with disabilities, mostly about me, whose lives were turned around by an education. And if you happen to have a disability, such as anxiety, rest assured there are ways to master any setback. Education is key.
First, an education led me, a person with extreme workplace anxiety, to a job I loved more than dining out, going to the cinema, traveling to Hawaii, getting a massage, a job that paid her more money than I ever imagined. And I felt passionate about my work, so much so, my severe anxiety rarely surfaced.
Second, an education did more miracles for me. Consider a disabled woman who worked in an employment shelter, earning five dollars total per forty-hour work week, doing menial tasks such as cutting strings or stuffing envelopes. An education helped her earn a salary above and beyond the wages made by many professionals. And her career felt like playtime. That was me.
Third, an education helped a mentally ill programmer, my friend’s boyfriend, gain the confidence to apply for an unlikely job and become a Chief Technology Officer of a bank, earning six figures. He now doesn’t shy away from applying for top roles when looking for a career.
Fourth, an education rescued a disabled person from a stagnant rehabilitation system, one that forced her to attend a hospital daily, participating in classes she never seemed to pass, such as training in basic communications skills. An education helped her bypass the system, proving that she can not only pass a communications course, but also claim a graduate degree. That, too, was me.
Sixth, an educated female with disability (me again) helped a friend’s child deemed a vegetable regain her life, go to school, and prove there are no such things as human vegetables.
Seventh, an education transformed me from my dying state with chronic disease. The principle of lifelong learning led me to read books on diet, ultimately transforming my disease. Once recovered, my education helped me earn a high enough income to fund a diet necessary to sustain my health.
Eighth, an education took a disabled woman referred to by many as “the stupidest person” and transformed her into the top performer in university science. That, too, was me.
Disabilities held me back. But it’s education that’s enabled me to move beyond it and find success.
Indeed, an education can perform miracles in all of our lives, regardless of our perceived limitations. No barrier can hold back a soul with a desire to achieve a so-called impossible dream. And nothing is impossible when we claim our right to an education.