Contributing opinion writer
Ben T. Elwy
Ben T. Elwy ’23 lives in Quincy House. His column “Living a Disabled Life” appears on alternate Tuesdays.
I didn’t choose to be disabled, to be mentally ill, to be queer, to want time to stop. But that’s how I am, and I’d like to be proud of that. So at this moment, I want to understand how to move on from uncertainty, regret, and pain, within the limits of this world; how we define and accept ourselves through the smiles we choose.
If my writing has made you imagine anything you’ve never imagined before — made you question yourself and your world, made you uneasy, made you uncomfortable — don’t push that away. Think about it, talk about it, bring it with you on your own path; live it, remember it. Those are dreams.
Living a disabled life means that I fall, and as I lie stunned, I see my reality of existing in this world reflected on a mirror of concrete or tile. But it’s a broken mirror, cracked by many falls; and in its brokenness, it refracts light into a million component shades, revealing not only my struggles, but — if I focus beyond my newly-acquired scrapes and bruises — all the smiles and tears of my life.