Hi! I'm Maylan Chavez, I'm 22 years old and from Miami, FL. I'm a student, patient, daughter, fiancee, and friend to all. As a disabled woman of 22 years, I've faced more struggles than most others ever should. I grew up in a world just not built for me, and constantly broke any barrier put in my path. Thanks to my parents who never imposed limits on me, I learned to be strong even when all else told me otherwise. Through school, friendships, relationships, family, travel, and interaction, I've risen above the known stigmas, and it was as easy as accepting who I am. I love me for me, and my most important lesson was learning that disability is not an obstacle, but rather a different way of living life.
I constantly remind myself of my one, absolute truth: happiness is a choice. You must choose to be happy. Proactively, unequivocally, unfalteringly — happy. And though it will always be easier to be anything but, being happy is the only choice that is worth it. I promise you. Be happy in the face of adversity, and the sun will always shine again.
If you are disabled like me, please remember there's nothing you can't do. And if you aren't, please remember that we all share this experience called life, and there is never any difference between you or any other human being. But please, above all, never let anyone, from a person to society, impose their views on you. Be all that you love yourself for, unapologetically. Always.