Shwetha Rosario, diagnosed with cerebral palsy, believes in following her heart!
Shwetha Rosario, 33 years old, works with Enable India as a content writer in Bengaluru. Shwetha who lived in the Middle East for more than 25 years moved back to India a few years back. She talks about the lifestyle differences of a person with disability in both the countries. Most importantly, Shwetha lives an independent life now in the ‘garden city of India’.
‘A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles’. This quote by Christopher Reeve aptly sums up Shwetha Rosario’s life. This 33-year-old was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at a young age. Shwetha who lived at Qatar in the Middle East throughout her childhood moved back to India with her family a few years work. She now works as a Content Writer for Enable India, an organization that works for people with disabilities.
Childhood days in the Middle East
Shwetha, soon after her birth, had health complications because she was born as a premature baby. The family was in Qatar at that time. Shwetha says that there was a lack of oxygen to her brain which led to her condition after which the doctors confirmed to her parents that she is going to have a life-long disability. But they couldn’t diagnose the condition at such a young age.
By the age of three years, Shwetha started having difficulty in walking or even moving around and that is when she was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Ever since then, her parents and siblings have stood by her as a strong pillar of support.
Shwetha completed her studies at a regular school. “When you live as an expatriate, there are no special schools for you there. Those are mostly for the locals. So I studied at an Indian school in Qatar where I only had good memories”, she says. All her siblings were in the same school which made things easier for her. “My teachers, other students and peers were good to me. I never faced discrimination based on my disability. All of them took good care of me”, she says.
Her school encouraged her to take part in even sports and other extra-curricular activities. Though she was the only child with a disability there, Shwetha never felt sidelined.
A return back to the roots
Shwetha and her family moved back to Mangaluru, their hometown, in the year 2010. Having spent 25 years of her life in Qatar, return back was India was hard for her, but not as much as she had expected.
Shwetha says being in the Middle East was a comfortable space for her. For instance, she had to rely on her family for transport. But here she has to manage on her own, though there are a handful of accessible modes of transport. “It took me at least four years to get used to India. It is a different life here. You are supposed to be on your own. Even when you go for a stroll or walk, there are ways to connect with others. But it was different out there”, she says.
Living an independent life
Shwetha has been working with Enable India for the past three and half years. She moved to Bengaluru in the year 2014 because her of her job demands. She works as a Content Writer, mostly on training material and content for people with visual impairment who are learning computers and soft skills.
Shwetha also focuses on her physical and mental well-being. She meditates and even goes for walks. “On weekends, I used to meet friends. But now, due to Coronavirus crisis, I spend most of my time indoors”, she says.
According to this youngster, it is important to know what you want in life in order to pursue it. “I don’t believe in going according to what others ask you to do. Work on what you want and that is how you achieve things in your life”, she says.
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