As many of you know I live with a chronic illness and one of my saving graces has been the amazing community that I have been welcomed into. So I was deeply saddened to hear of the death of Stella Young. Stella Young was an amazing disability advocate, activist and very funny to boot. She wasn't afraid to call out inspiration porn and tried to change peoples' opinions of disabled people or crips as she affectionately called us.
"People get all up in arms when I describe myself as a crip because what they hear is the word 'cripple'... Crip is a word that I find empowering"Stella was born with osteogenesis imperfecta, a genetic illness that courses the bones to break very easily. OI isn't an invisible illness as you can often see the affects but she is still highly regarded in the chronic illness community and she did so much to get our voices heard. She challenged the idea that disabled people were an inspiration because as she said we don't do anything special we just try to live normal lives.
She came onto my radar when she gave her TED talk about 'inspiration porn' and living life as a disabled person. Her talk spoke to me on so many levels and really made me think differently, I too still don't understand when people call me brave and strong but I've come to accept the compliment and use my voice to raise awareness of Chronic Illnesses. I have Stella to thank for empowering me and so many others.
Rest in Peace you fierce babe