Erika Griessler is a nature lover, dreamer, author – and a stroke survivor. For her, it was self-evident: nothing can stop her from doing anything because of her spastic hemiparesis. Today, she uses social media to promote greater understanding of physical and psychological impairments. Which other topics are important to her and how she otherwise rolls, she tells us on REHACARE.com.
Name: Erika Griessler Age: 31 City: St. Veit an der Gölsen, Austria Occupation: Nature conservation officer Impairment: I have been living with spastic hemiparesis since a stroke shortly before my eleventh birthday that paralyzed the left half of my body.
Erika Griessler: A lot of things. I am quite easy to amuse and in principle I laugh a lot, but almost certainly about my friends and funny animal videos.
What have you always been wanting to do and why have you never done this so far?
Erika Griessler: There are some trips I would still like to take, but I am concerned that it would be too physically demanding for me. That would be for example a Scandinavia round trip or a journey to the USA. Which person has influenced you most? And why?
Erika Griessler: Probably my mother, whom I would describe as an absolute superwoman. She was always able to master any situation despite very adverse circumstances and never lost her positive attitude towards life. For example, for many years she cared for my father, who became bedridden due to a brain tumor, and on the side she ran the farm alone. She was and still is the absolute teacher for me when it comes to resilience.
You have the chance to become the Commissioner for the Disabled. What would you do first?
Erika Griessler: Since it was a big issue for me, it would be an initiative to make it easier for people with disabilities to study. Possibly develop a new scholarship including intensive support.
What is especially near and dear to you? Erika Griessler: As can also be read on my website, it is my concern to draw attention to physical and psychological impairments and bring them into people's consciousness. So that there are no more strange looks or even hurtful reactions. But writing is also a great passion of mine.
I would like to be once...
Erika Griessler: published author.
To which question would you like an answer?
Erika Griessler: Why is there still so much envy and resentment towards people with disabilities?
What I wanted to say...
Erika Griessler: My favorite quote and at the same time my motto in life: "The thoughts we choose are the colors we use to paint the canvas of our life." (Louise Hay)