As we wind down the clock on #DisabilityPrideMonth2023 I’m filled with a multitude of emotions: exhaustion, amazement, and definitely pride!
It is approaching two years since I devoted my efforts to running The Alycia Anderson Company full time, and today I am filled with some senses of accomplishment, although I know that I am far from finished on this path.
This month was busy.
I held four live events (two in-person and two virtually), published an article in RIMS Magazine and launched my latest project, a #Podcast, Pushing Forward with Alycia! All, strategically planned to honor Disability Pride Month, the anniversary of #ADA and to highlight the power of disabled perspective.
And as I look back in reflection today, I’m grateful & proud. There was SO much fear in embarking on this journey, especially the podcast.
It’s one thing to get up on a stage and do my thing as a #Speaker. My keynotes are well practiced and seasoned. I know the path. My speeches are award winning. They are tried and true. The content has been received by my audiences over and over and again and again. And, I know for the most part where I start, where I end and what my audiences will ask me afterwards.
But a podcast is an organic process. Yes, there is a plan, but the conversation each time seems to end up leading to itself on its own. The process takes you places you might not be expecting, and that was what I was afraid of initially. Afraid I would say the wrong thing or not know an answer. Afraid the content would not be received or that I was not the right person to lead this conversation.
BUT what I actually have found is fears may come up and that’s ok, it’s all part of the process.
The path of this work is needed to progress our understanding. I’m seeing shifts already. Whether it is someone in my own circle recognizing inequities and speaking up about them, or leaders in corporate positions of power sharing the message with their teams, and even young girls doing projects in school on #DisablingAbleism.
I take pride in the fact that if I can help make the smallest effect on someone’s journey, I know the work I’m doing is worth it.
I am proud of myself for being more accepting of who I am, the way I am, in the process as well. That is what #DisabilityPride means to me.
And to close this Disability Pride Month with one more thought before it comes around again next year, I would love to share that what I’m finding in this short amount of time is… this work is very important and pushing through fear, awkwardness and accepting the hard work opens up a path to new understandings to self growth and our collective growth as a society.