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Chloe, age 14

I have had hemiplegia since I was born in 1994. I spent 99 days in hospital. At nine years old I went to hospital and had an operation in the summer holidays. I am pleased to say I am walking the best I have ever done.

It was not my hemiplegia which was bad, it was the other problems I face in life. I don't like school because of the people, I get ignored all the time and then I have to have help all the time because of health and safety. But I do like the teacher in the sports because they treat me the same as all the rest but if you don't or can't you don't have to.

I would say this to other children with hemiplegia: A day is a battle but you are not the only ones who have to face the battle, whether it is getting dressed or your class mates. Think of all the good times you have had or look forward to... a dinner... shopping or watching TV. I know about how hard school is but I am lucky because it really only affects my leg but always try and try again.

Parents, I will say this: Give us time and help when we need it. Make your child feel needed. Love them and don't wonder what they could have been like. You must realise it is a battle for your child but you have got to help them in school like with homework and do your strength exercises because they really help. UNDERSTAND THAT SOMETIMES I AM WEAK AND NOT JUST LAZY. And get your child to join HemiHelp. It is great because you can do cool things and meet people who are like you. Mums and Dads you can ask questions and meet parents which are in the same boat. 

Here is a poem that I wrote:

Don’t pity me for my problems,
admire me for how I can cope with them.
If you notice the weakness of my body,
also notice the strength of my spirit.
Don’t feel bad about my struggle,
Respect me because I never stop trying.

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