Can-Do-Ability: Answers and Solutions from my personal experiences of living with a disability

Cherie Barry embraces her individuality

18 Feb 2013Cherie Barry has struggled to gain confidence her whole life. She is now comfortable and happy at age 20.

Here is a Q & A I did with Cherie

What is your occupation?

My current occupation is a fashion stylist.

Who/what inspires you?

I am inspired by the people around me, my friends and my family. Seeing them succeed motivates me to work hard to get what I desire. This is why I'm always happy to help others because it also helps me.

What is your disability?

My disability is that I have a full left leg amputation as a result of cancer (Osteosarcoma) at the age of 7.

How did your disability impact your life as you were growing up?

As I was growing up I had some serious issues with my confidence. I wouldn't like being in public because of the large amount of attention I would gain - the comments etc. I was extremely shy and always wanted to just slide under the radar.

What message do you want to give people?

The message I want to give people is that you should embrace your individuality and put things into a perspective where it's positive. Where I previously hated being in public because of the attention, I now embrace it as I just think about how some people go to extreme lengths to have such attention/exposure drawn to themselves. I have had people tell me I'm an inspiration just for walking with my head held high. If something as small as that can have an effect on others, I'm happy to keep doing it. Many people suffer from a lack of confidence and self-esteem but it's all down to what you let effect you. Everyone is different and that's perfectly fine. What's different in you can be what someone else is needing to see/hear about to help them.

What are your plans for 2013?

For 2013 I have plenty of plans. I have recently moved to Melbourne so one of my first goals is to get into my own house. I want to be able to have the opportunity to work with several artists that I admire and to have my first styling magazine publication go to print. I am also looking to share my story with as many people as possible and interact with as many people as I can, utilising new outlets to do so. I have a desire to work with children so this is something that I am also pursuing. Plenty to keep me busy!!

Photographer, Michelle Grace Hunder, did a photo shoot of Cherie recently. Cherie wanted the shoot to show that you can be attractive even with one leg. Cherie asked Nacho Pop (dancer and choreographer) to be in the shoot with her. Check out these gorgeous photos.

Photographer: Michelle Grace Hunder

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