An illness is not automatically a punishment, but a chance to discover oneself anew. This insight means a lot to Christiane Schweiker, because her own quality of life is near and dear to her. As long as possible she wants to be able to take care of herself independently and to be responsible. If and to what extend mean tripping hazards impair her doing this, she tells us on REHACARE.com.
Name: Christiane Schweiker Age: 41 City: Mainz, Germany Occupation: not working Impairment: I am hosting a Multiple Sclerosis, a fibromyalgia and also a celiac disease combined with an irritable bowel syndrome.
Christiane Schweiker: I laugh a lot and I really like it. Humor is a good filter in order to not wallow in self-pity. Actually there is no day without laughing heartily – at least once.
What have you always been wanting to do and why have you never done this so far?
Christiane Schweiker: I always wanted to do a photo shooting. And there have been several offers but I did not dare so far. I think I am not very photogenic. Although everybody around me tells me I am.
Which person has influenced you most?
Christiane Schweiker: Above all my son Maurice. He taught me a lot about myself. He held up a mirror to me so many times and it was good this way. I could come to terms with my own childhood because of him. I am a mother who can admit mistakes and who was the talent to emphasize with him. We understand each other perfectly and are always honest and straight with each other.
You have the chance to become the German Federal Commissioner for the Disabled. What would you do first?
Christiane Schweiker: I would eliminate all cobblestones in sidewalks and streets. No person with disability needs these mean tripping hazards. Driving across cobblestones with a wheelchair can be extremely dangerous. I made this experience in 2011 and it was really not a nice thing.
Your life is made into a film: Who would represent you?
Christiane Schweiker: Because of the fact that I cannot think of anybody, I will have to do it on my own.
I would like to be ...
Christiane Schweiker: painfree. One day without pain would be dreamlike.
Which questions would you like answered the most?
Christiane Schweiker: Why are ill people frowned upon?
What I finally want to say...
Christiane Schweiker: Dear people out there, being healthy is not a privilege! Everybody could be the next to get ill. So please be so kind and stop giving us, who are “not healthy”, good advice or treating us like lepers. Every single day we are trying to make the best out of our situation and we know what is good for us and what we are worth. Thank you.