INTRODUCTION TO MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY
My name is Abby and I am 16 years old and a sophomore in high school. I have a rare form of Muscular Dystrophy. Muscle Dystrophy is when your muscles get weaker as you age. I have a story just like everyone else, and I hope that by telling it I will inspire others to be themselves, and to not be ashamed of who God has made them.
LIVING WITH MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY IN MIDDLE SCHOOL
I have always hated myself. I would find the littlest things about myself that I hated, and I would become depressed because I thought I was just so ugly. In middle school I was so ashamed of who I was. I wouldn’t tell anyone that I had Muscular Dystrophy. It’s not like I could hide it, but I would just avoid it. When people asked me questions of why I couldn’t do something, I would just say “I don’t know” and move on. As of now I use a wheelchair, but that’s not because I have gotten weaker, it’s just that I’m not as ashamed of myself as I used to be. I would force myself to walk in middle school because I didn’t want people to judge me or look down on me in any way. People were still very rude, but now I look back and see how much stronger it has made me.
CAMP FOR KIDS WITH MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY
Through the hard times in middle school I have always had MDA camp, which is one reason why I am who I am today. I saw all these kids at camp, and they were so happy to be themselves and they were unashamed of who they are even with their circumstances. It made me question myself “why am I ashamed to be who God has made me to be?” Every time I went to MDA camp, I grew as a person mentally and physically. I have met so many great friends and I myself was inspired by so many people. I’m very excited to be blessed with two more years to experience the great adventures, and meet others with Muscular Dystrophy.
HOMESCHOOLED DUE TO MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY
I was taken out of public school my 8th grade year, which was GREAT. I had so much anxiety and depression being in middle school that I really needed a break, and God obviously took care of me. I was homeschooled from 8th grade through my freshmen year of high school, which were the years I grew the most in my faith with Jesus Christ. In homeschool, it was difficult to always be at home and never leave the house. I’m not an extrovert, but I also didn’t want to always stay at home. In my free time when I felt lonely, I just prayed, read my bible, and found inner peace that is unexplainable. After being homeschooled for two years my family was no longer able to continue, so I knew I had to go back to the one place that gave me very low esteem. Not only was I going back, but God had called for me to use a wheelchair.
MY CURRENT LIFE WITH MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY
I was very nervous about going to high school using a wheelchair. I had to fully trust God and his plan for my life. I was so scared that people would judge me for being myself, and I thought that I would have no friends. I prayed hard and trusted God completely. I am now very thankful that I trusted him because I have made very good friends that embrace me for myself and the doors have opened up for me to speak about Muscle Dystrophy, which is mind boggling because before I couldn’t even say those words without cringing- now I’m speaking about it!
BE YOURSELF: MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY HAS MADE ME A STRONGER PERSON
I’m not going to sit here and say that I am completely confident in myself because I’d be lying. However, I can tell you that Muscular Dystrophy has made me stronger as a person. It has taught me not to care what others think, to be my best self, and most of all to trust GOD completely because without him I wouldn’t be writing this. I would probably be in a dark hole full of hate, anxiety, and depression if it weren’t for God. He is my rock and the one who has turned my weakness into a strength.
He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Isaiah 40:29
Follow me on Instagram: @godisstrength12
Abby Elizabeth McCage
16//Muscle dystrophy//Jesus lover//James 4:8.