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I was going to be the kids’ superhero.

I was going to be the kids’ superhero.

Selcan Kankul

My difficult, moving, hospitalized story began when I was 6 months old. When I was a healthy kid until the 6th month. We were living abroad because of my father’s work. And 20 days after we left for Turkmenistan, I embarked on a difficult life.

One evening, my parents saw my face slither to the left, but also when I was dressing up, they saw that my left-sided arms and legs had no muscle strength and was immobile like a dead man. They rushed me to the doctor, but the doctors there called I got the flu and sent me back home.

Turns out I was having a convulsion and my left side was paralyzed. When I had a fever and no life in my arms and legs, they tried to bring me to Turkey. Of course, back then, there weren’t planes there every day, so they had to wait two days for a plane (I might have been a lot better off if we could go earlier but thanks to god anyway)

When we left, of course, I was in a coma for a month in Istanbul Çapa hospital. The doctors told my parents to be prepared for anything at any time, that at best I could be 90% disabled. Even when I opened my eyes and reacted, the doctors said, “That’s what it looks like to you.” As soon as I left the hospital, my beloved Physiotherapist Speacilist Pt Feride Bilir came into our lives. I always say she is my superhero, my idol. I don’t know exactly how old I was, but I’ve been in this business for as long as I can remember. The answer to the first question, “What will you be when you grow up?” Was the physiotherapist. I’ve always dreamed of it. My parents didn’t give up on me for a day, they tried harder on the word of those doctors, they got more hope and I have nothing but mild speech disorders right now. One way or another, I studied physical therapy and rehabilitation at Inonu University, fulfilled my dream and became a child physiotherapist, despite those who said you can’t do it, you can’t communicate with patients.

Now to my work life. As an individual with cerebral palsy, I knew from the beginning that it would not be easy …

Job anxiety is a big problem for every graduating young person. And if you are a disabled person, unfortunately this problem is greater than ever. When I had nothing physical, I was prejudiced just because of my speech disorder and didn’t get a positive result from anywhere. Then somehow my path crossed with “TURKEY SPASTIC CHILDREN FOUNDATION (CEREBRAL PALSY TURKEY)” and touched my life like a magic wand… I am also a member of the “TSÇV CP awareness group”. What our little group of 4 have in common is that we have cerebral palsy and we all have jobs. As a group, we talk about cerebral palsy, participate in awareness activities, raise awareness.

And the happiness that came two years later. On October 8, 2019, after the “October 6th World Cerebral Palsy Awareness March”, Mrs. Zehra Zümrüt Selçuk, Minister of Family, Labor and Social Services, accepted non-governmental organizations in her office as part of the World Cerebral Palsy Day. I was there with Ismail Kemal Gürleyik, our Executive Chairman of the Spastic Children’s Foundation of Turkey, and Nigar Evgin, our General Director. After I explain myself, Prof. Dr. Orhan Koç and Minister Zehra Zümrüt Selçuk made me a very nice offer and a beautiful door was opened. I can’t describe my happiness at the time, my surprise. Imagine you’re studying the profession you dreamed of, but you can’t because of prejudices. And one day, we’re given the opportunity to step into the profession that is our life. October 8, 2019 is already among the dates I will never forget. I am currently working as a Physiotherapist at Mersin Disability Care Center and I am guiding and giving hope to children who are facing the difficulties I have experienced.

Other than that, I take private patients, give motivational speeches by telling my success story in various universities and various institutions, and try to give hope to many families.

HOPE, PERSEVERANCE, FAITH. There’s nothing we can’t do after these three words.

I’ve been in this business since I was 6 months old, and like my superhero, Feride, I was going to be the hero of the other kids. I would read, knowing that there would be obstacles, and I would be the superhero of the children.

And I finally did…