I have CP. (Or I'm a Ceep, but sadly that term has yet to catch on in mainstream dialogue.) I have a Bachelor's Degree and am pursuing my Master's. I am in a committed relationship (with another Ceep, but we can have relationships with able-bodied/nondisabled people as well!). I have presented at conferences all over the country. I generally look like I have my shit together (whether or not I actually have my shit together is an entirely different story). None of this, in any way, means that I have "overcame" my CP, as if CP is a hurdle to jump over and, once cleared, is simply a distant memory.
I inhabit my CP body every day. Contrary to popular opinion, this is not a tragedy. I move about as comfortably in my body as any of you do in yours. Now, this isn't to say that it isn't hard sometimes, or that CP is all sunshine and roses. I spent half the night last night sleeping on the floor, because the lack of space on my bed to stretch my legs properly was preventing me from falling asleep. I have chronic pain and fatigue. But this is my body, as odd and "abnormal" as it is, and I wouldn't trade it for the world.
Without CP, I would not have discovered the bright and vibrant disability community. I would never have met my best friend or my boyfriend. Come to think of it, I would never have met most of my friends. I would never have found my passion for disability studies and justice. I would not have started one of the only (if not THE only) groups on Facebook exclusively for people with CP - a group that has over 1,000 members and is growing every day. Without CP, I would not be me. Without CP, Cara would be someone completely different.
I am not a target for your misguided inspiration. I do not need any God to bless me. I am a 22 year old young woman living her life to the fullest and that, in itself, is a radical act.
[Image description: My boyfriend and I on the Coney Island boardwalk. We're leaning into each other and holding hands. I'm white with light brown hair with sunglasses pushed up on top of my head, wearing a lime green t-shirt and a denim jacket with denim shorts and hot pink Crocs. My boyfriend is Hispanic, wearing jeans and a dark blue Doctor Who TARDIS shirt with a red baseball cap worn backwards. We both are using power wheelchairs.]