OTHERS

I'm Paralyzed and Have Scoliosis, But I'm Proud to Be Me!

Scoliosis

Maureen Kartika

They thought I was a healthy baby girl

Hi, my name is Maureen. I was born in Jakarta, Indonesia in 1994. I'm the only daughter in my family, so my family was very excited when I was born. One day, my mother found out that I couldn't walk because my motor skills were weak. That news broke my family's heart, but it didn't stop them from trying to find a way for me to walk. Even after all my family has done for me, I am still unable to walk today, and I use a wheelchair.

Another storm came

After everything that crushed me and my family, there was still another storm coming toward us. At the age of 10, we found out that I had scoliosis. Since then I had to wear a brace everyday, but still my scoliosis got much worst. The doctor told my parents that I needed a surgery, but they were too scared at that time, so they decided not to do the surgery. They were afraid that the surgery would take me away from them.

Be happy and smile

Even though I know I'm "disabled" and have scoliosis, it doesn't stop me from living my life to the fullest. I went to a normal school and I have so many true friends who accept me the way I am, especially my boyfriend. We've been together for almost 10 years and he always supports me in everything I wanna do. Today I'm a student in one of the best universities in Indonesia, studying psychology.

He always has the best plan for us

In 2013, my scoliosis got to 120 degrees and it made it very hard for me to breath. My family was still afraid for me to get any surgery, but I decided that I wanted live and the only way to stay alive was by doing the surgery. I started looking for the best doctor to do my scoliosis correction surgery. One day I finally found him, and had my surgery in May 2013. My curve went from 120 degrees to 70 degrees.

The storm is coming back

After having the surgery, my life was as perfect as possible. I was happy living my ordinary life, studying, and having fun with my family and friends. Until one day in 2014, I got sick and suddenly I was back in the ICU. I got pheunomia, and I couldn't breath without help from many machines. Still, my family and I wouldn't give up, and the only way I could get out of the ICU was to get a tracheostomy.

Stay happy and keep smiling

For me this was the hardest time in my life. I felt so ugly with the 70 degree scoliosis, wheelchair and now tracheostomy. I stayed at the hospital for a month and I was in home care for 6 months more. The only place I went was from home to the hospital for monthly check-ups. I was depressed, but with all the support I received from my family and friends, I was able to get up, and go on with my life. In 2015 I went back to pursuing my degree in psychology. Not only that, now with the love I have for makeup, I'm starting my own YouTube channel to share my not so professional makeup techniques. I share this on my Instagram. Today, I can love myself just the way I am, no matter what. For me, as long as I believe and have a will, then I can do anything I want no matter what my condition is. There will always be a way to pursue my dream to be a psychologist and maybe one day a professional makeup artist.

EMPOWER OTHERS!

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