Hey folks! My name is Saumyaasiny Vijayan. I am 22 and I have a neurological condition called as Spastic Triplegia Cerebral Palsy.

My family consists of a strict father, a mother who always pampers me, as well as an elder sister and brother who always instruct me to do this and that. Despite my physical condition, I was never treated as a special child at home.

Spastic Triplegia Cerebral Palsy is a neurological condition which involves insufficient oxygen supply to a part of the brain resulting in physical abnormality. At the age of 3, my parents enrolled me in a spastic school which had all the facilities I needed, such as physiotherapy and occupational therapy.

However, there were no any curricular activities at school, as all I did was watch television and color. After observing me, my parents knew that I was mentally normal, so they decided to send me to a normal pre-school when I was five. I was excited to get a normal education.

I was then looking forward to joining primary school, and the first challenge in my life began. Yes, I got bullied when I was seven. After my father (who was a teacher in the same school) found out about it, it was smooth sailing from then. Going to school daily was really fun, as I was famously known as the "teacher's daughter".

I made sure I finished all my homework on time, as if I did not, the teachers would update my father about it. I thoroughly enjoyed my primary school days. I studied round the clock for my Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR), and I was awarded third place in the category of students with special needs in Johor (in the year 2011).

Then came PT3 (Pentaksiran Tingkatan 3), of which I was the pioneer batch, and SPM (Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia).

During my school days, I did not have the chance to hang out with my friends. This is because they were afraid to come out with me since I'm disabled. Nevertheless, my friends were quite helpful, especially when it came to understanding subjects we have just learned in school.

Today, I am a final year student in Bachelor’s of Psychology (Honours) at Raffles University in Johor Bahru. I am also an amature public speaker who has represented the Toastmasters club for the International and Table Topics speech contest during the term of 2020/2021.

I would say that I have a great love for pets, nature and music. I am a very straightforward person and a girl who loves to make friends. You will realize this once you try to make a conversation with me. I do not like to be compared with others. This is because I believe that everyone is unique in their own way.

I had to prove my abilities in every bit of my life since I was young and I still have a lot more to work on. All I need is some strength to strive through it. To the people who are reading this, remember... life is never easy. You are the master of your battles! So, stand tall and shine as bright as you want to!

This story by Saumyaasiny was originally featured on The Unique You Facebook page and has been reproduced in Astro Ulagam.

Photos source: The Unique You Facebook.