My name is Gabby and I dress so brightly you can probably see me from space. You can find me rolling around Adelaide. Just look for the glow on the horizon. I am also a disability advocate, wheelchair user, law nerd and animal rescue addict.
I’ve been in a wheelchair for about the last ten years so I have loads of experience with the good, bad and the ugly of wheelchair life. Maybe I have been lucky in as far as most of my experiences have been good but not going to lie the bad ones hurt and it doesn’t take many to shake my confidence.
When I don’t feel confident I find it hard to trust the outside world and retreat into this super unhealthy (and unsustainable) warrior mode.
I think the solution is conversation.
This might be wishful thinking but I choose to believe that any short comings in disability inclusion are due to a lack of education. It makes sense, if you haven’t lived it how could you understand it. So, I’m more than happy to share my experiences and enter into what often turns into awkward conversations with the aim of moving the needle forward. Firmly believe if we don’t talk nothing changes.
Once we get everyone talking then I can learn to trust more as the rest of the world figures out disability inclusion.
I’ve always been, shall we say “high volume” which is super helpful in the disability inclusion space.
Firstly, I think puts me in a great position to lead some of this conversation and information sharing and that’s what I try and do on my Instagram page @theadelaidehipster.
Secondly, one of the big issues with disability inclusion is representation. I dress like somewhere between a parade float and a Christmas tree ornament. I am extremely visible, even when I try not to be. If you check out my Instagram you will see there is a lot of me there….me being extra in a wheelchair which I love. In person I just get louder (but in the best way possible). There is absolutely no reason why a person with a visible disability can’t be in the spotlight and that sentiment is doubled when the person in the spotlight is me.
I love getting messages from people saying that they thought they had to sit back in the shadows and just accept what they were given, until they saw how I conduct myself and now they want out of the shadows and to be living their lives in full color.
Beyond my love of shiny things I am a secret law nerd, don’t get me started about privacy law, data collection/processing and how social media platforms are taking over the world. I can literally talk for days. My sainted husband has sat through many a “discussion” and has only barely survived.
Similar warning with my rescue babies. I just cant say no to an animal in need so there is always some fur babies floating around the house. I am the exact stereotype of super child obsessed mum when it comes to my fur babies.
Looking forward to sharing more experiences on this forum.