Unashamedly giving voice to lessons learned from living with disability

By Staff Reporter Time of article published Dec 3, 2021

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CAPE TOWN - As the World commemorates the International Day of Disabled Persons, wheeling ahead of current standards to show the world an inclusive way of living, Chaeli Mycroft (27) in her auto-biography Unapologetically Able, shares tales of daily living and unashamedly gives voice to the lessons learned from her disability.

She invites readers into her astonishing, yet totally ordinary world, asking them plainly at one point: “Are you ready for another important and confusing conversation?”

The constant battle for equitable treatment collides with personal insecurities, culminating in Mycroft’s introductory admission that “being disabled is hard”.

The lens through which she sees the world around her gives meaning to readers’ understanding of disability, a life experience that remains largely invisible in mainstream culture.

“Creating safe, supportive and accommodating spaces is the goal of inclusion: a simple and profound vision for a world that embraces individual difference and celebrates common humanitarian goals.

“I’m 100% fine with confusing people into a state of awareness,” she said.

Refusing to submit to conventional thinking means that she – as an ability activist – lives her work daily by ‘occupying unexpected spaces and challenging preconceived ideas of what disabled people ‘should’ be doing’”.

Illustrated best by her determination to compete in the Comrades Marathon, in 2016 Mycroft became the first assisted athlete to complete the event.

Mycroft lives boldly, saying: “I choose to hold myself to a higher standard than society’s expectations of me.”

Unapologetically Able is available on Takealot and at Exclusive Books.

Cape Times

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