"Today is a Cane Day (And I'm Going To Have To Learn To Be Okay With That)" Oaklee Thiele October 18 - 24, 2020
"In 2017, I was diagnosed with C-PTSD and paired with a medical alert service dog to mitigate the severe flashbacks and anxiety attacks that I was experiencing on a daily basis. In the years following, I developed Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) coupled with chronic muscle pain that has made it difficult to write, walk, or stay conscious for more than a few hours at a time. As a result, I currently use a mobility aid part-time. Having lived the majority of my life as an able-bodied female, I have had to relearn a lot of things. Perhaps the most difficult- I’ve had to learn to mentally cope with being visibly disabled. My disabilities are invisible however; my newly acquired service dog and mobility aid are dead giveaways that I am in fact disabled. My current work explore my disabled identity as a young college student, the ableism and discrimination that I face because of my medical equipment, and the relationships that I have with my medical alert service dog and mobility aid."