Disability and Fashion – Cerebral Palsy
My name is Brett Reynolds and from wearing baggy clothes to wearing a coat all day and even not wearing short sleeve shirts for over a decade I have tried it all to try and hide my disability. I lacked confidence, self believe and never thought that fashion could change this. I have Cerebral Palsy.
Could you imagine at age 27 struggling to do up buttons, tie your shoe laces or even hold a bag in 1 hand and not being able to open the door with the other? Not only that but getting a blank look when you tell most food chains that you can’t cut your own food… crazy hey
Ok I won’t lie, I still wear the jackets and the shirts ( mainly long sleeved) baggy but I have learnt how to dress this up to make it look like its meant to be. I have found a release in fashion and have even been known to spend days getting the right look that doesn’t show off my disability and hides it instead. It’s a struggle that I feel goes unnoticed in the fashion world.
I go through these shoes much quicker than the average gent
I struggle to find shoes that don’t affect my ankle and find shirts that don’t emphasis that one of my arms is much smaller than the other but when I do its heaven. I once bought 5 pairs of Vans just because they fitted so well and luckily still have a pristine pair in my wardrobe. Another issue is I go through these shoes much quicker than the average gent due to my foot being on an angle which in turn means I scuff the front of one but at the same time the heel keeps looking brand new. Trust me the likes of ASOS are probably bored of me abusing their returns policy until I get it right.
I also do a lot of fitness and trying to disguise my disability. I feel that my fashion sense helps me hide who and what I am.
With Fashion comes fitness in my eyes. Because of my grip I have to tie my hand to the bars that I use but I am determined to look “normal” no matter what it takes and hope to one day get noticed for my determination. Remember its not disabled its disABLEd