Yesterday was World Cerebral Palsy Day. I have lived with this and hydrocephalus all my life, and have had so many different experiences throughout my life so far. 4 years ago, I decided to start a YouTube channel called cpchick about my experiences and as a way to raise some disability awareness. I knew I was not the first person to do this. My videos started off short and got longer, and cover a variety of topics, from awareness videos, to my experiences and also makeup and beauty product reviews. Aside from this, around the same time, I created a Facebook page, Katherine Hayward my Life with Cerebral Palsy, and an equivalent page in Spanish, a language I am fluent in. (Katherine Hayward mi vida con Parálisis Cerebral). The views on my videos vary, and making videos is enjoyable. I sterted a blog with the same name as my Facebook page in English. I worked on the page as much as I could despite other commitments (books, reading and life).
Last night, as I uploaded my video for World CP Day 2016, I thought of rebranding my work- of changing focus. Facebook, and YouTube, are full of people spreading awareness in their own ways- of quotes and photos of their lives. I have been closely monitoring my Facebook page stats and video views, but have not been satisfied for quite a while. I felt this way this time last year but thought I’d give it another yeear to see what happens, and to see if my stats improve, but they didn’t. I have expenses in my daily life that mean I have to prioritise. I have made the decision to take my old pages down, and rebrand the way I show my life online.
I’m keeping my Youtube channel, because of the time I have spent making videos, and because I know how time consuming (but enjoyable) they were to make. Thanks to everyone who sent pictures for my video. I had a few pictures that did well on my page yesterday, but other than that, nothing. I shared it around as I usually do, too. I’m just myself in everything I do, but realise that my definition of awareness has changed:it’s not about just wearing green for a day or posting quotes. In the grand scheme of things, for me it’s about really showing me as I am, and my world as it is, in a way that people identify with, and that gets noticed. It’s also about real changes being made for people with CP in every area of life- education, health free time activities and offerings employment and housing . As an adult with CP, those are my real concerns. It is this that would make me happy, and feel the world has changed, for it is about going beyond “awareness.”
I ended my World CP Day this year feeling disappointed. As with anything in life, I’ll be back, just rebranded.