July 11, 2022

Rachel McCrickard, LMFT

From our Founder

Each week, our founder, Rachel, writes about her learnings and reflections in our newsletter, Mondays with Motivo. Sign up below to receive it in your inbox.

Remembering what's true

July 11, 2022

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By: Rachel McCrickard

Hi, friends!

My sister is an avid reader – she reads like 5-6 books a month. She is always recommending books to me and I always say, “sounds interesting” and then I never read them. 

I prefer podcasts. I regularly send her links to different podcast episodes and she says, “sounds interesting” and then she never listens to them.

A few months ago, she said, “Can we just agree that you are never going to read the books I recommend to you and I am never going to listen to the podcasts you recommend to me?”

“Yep, agreed.”

However, there is one exception – recently, I broke trend and read Sitting Pretty – a book my sister wouldn’t shut up about. She knew I would love it and she was right.

Sitting Pretty: The View from My Ordinary Resilient Disabled Body is a memoir by Rebekah Taussig, who shares her experiences as a writer, teacher, mother, and wheelchair user. She also shares mini-memoirs on her Instagram page right here.

Taussig became paralyzed at the age of 3, following a battle with cancer. However, as she describes in the book, her parents were pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps types so they didn’t add any accommodations to their home, or even obtain a wheelchair for her until several years later.

Instead, Rebekah was treated exactly the same as her siblings. She learned to climb to the top bunk of her bed, crawl to her neighbors house, and empty her own catheter.

Here’s how she describes the early years of her life…

“During this window of crawling in the mud and scrambling to my top bunk, I believed that I was royally beautiful, valuable, and fully capable of contributing to the group.”

In subsequent chapters, Rebekah goes on to share how the world quickly informed her that she was different and “other” with our stares, insensitive comments, and general preference toward ableism in almost every scenario. The way she describes airplane flights, pool parties, and school dances provided helpful visuals to me of what life might look like from one disabled person’s view.

I gained a lot from reading the book, just like my sister said I would, but the thing that has stuck with me most is Rebekah’s innate, untarnished view of herself before she began to venture out into the world.

She believed that she was a person of worth and value – just as she was. And she only began to doubt that when the world told her otherwise.

Rebekah’s story resonated with me on personal level. I’m sure I’m not the only one who can think back to little (or big) moments in my childhood where I was told something about myself – my body, my voice, my personality, that I decided to adopt as truth. Even as an adult, a conversation or comment might cause me to question my inner knowing. 

Rebekah’s words inspired me to pause and ask myself, “What was true of me before the world told me otherwise?”

Or perhaps better yet,”What is true of me that I stopped believing along the way?”

I believe that Rebekah’s words about herself are just as true about every single one of us – that we are “royally beautiful, valuable, and fully capable of contributing to the group.”

I’m going to carry this knowing into my week- and, if it’s helpful, I hope you will too.

As always, I love hearing from you so if you have anything you’d like to share, please feel free to reply to me here.

 Warmly,

Rachel

Rachel McCrickard, LMFT
CEO/Founder, Motivo
[email protected]

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