This section is dedicated to posts written by Bryanna who lends hope and inspiration to those with disabilities. Bryanna is a member of our Adult Day Program (ADP) and is a member on our board. We hope you enjoy the light Bryanna sheds on those living with disabilities!
Hello! My name is Bryanna Daniels, and I have several disabilities of my own. I have a visual impairment, seizures, and a hormonal disorder all due to several underdevelopments in my brain. Like any other person with a disability(ies), I have my ups and downs, and these ups and downs can sometimes be a struggle. I believe and practice the saying of "treat others the way you want to be treated". I'm independent for the most part, but there are times where I need support, and like others in the disability community, I need a boost. This is why I desired and earned a position on the board; not only to help my piers and the disabled community, but to also shed some light on other aspects of life for those who have disabilities.
A Little Bit About Me and My Disabilities
I was born with a visual impairment, along with other issues due to underdevelopments of my brain. As a result, I spent the first few years of my life in hospitals and doctor's offices due to medical scares and several rare disorders. I was born with Optic Nerve Hypoplasia (ONH) and Septo-Optic Dysplasia (SOD). These two rare conditions go hand in hand, and even though visual impairment or blindness are the most well known factors of this disorder, there are other disorders that come with it as well. There are three parts to my brain that did not fully develop; my optic nerve, my pituitary gland, and one of the bridges in my brain that connect the two halves together, called the septum pellucidum. The optic nerve connects from your retina (which is at the back of your eye) to your brain. In my case, however, my optic nerves are smaller than they should be, resulting in lack of vision in both eyes. I also have what's called panhypopituitarism), which is a condition where your pituitary gland (the master gland that tells all the other hormonal glands to produce hormones) doesn't function properly (sometimes not at all). As a result, I've had to take hormone supplements for the majority of my life, and I'm constantly monitored by an endocrinologist. Without replacement hormone therapy, my condition is fatal and can lead to death due to an adrenal crisis. An adrenal crisis is when you have a severe insufficiency of hormones, especially cortisol and adrenaline. Cortisol is a stress hormone that your adrenal glands produce on a daily basis to get you through even the easiest normal tasks and activities; doing laundry, taking a walk, getting together with friends, going to work, etc. Without it, my wellbeing is drastically effected, causing my blood glucose to drop to dangerous levels, causing me to have seizures and can put me at risk for becoming comatose or even result in death. However, while this sounds extremely frightening, I've learned how to manage my condition over the years of my life. I've gone down a rough road, to say the least, but I take each day as it comes, and I'm still able to live a great life.