diciembre 17, 2012 | North America: New Hampshire

Special Olympics has changed my life as an athlete

By Jenifer Calo

Me playing sled hockey, that I wish Special Olympics would make an official sport.

My name is Jeni. Since i Joined Special Olympics in 1999, I have changed as a person and as an athlete. At first I was rowdy and didn't know how to act and got really mad when I didn't win a medal. Now I compete in all sorts of sports inside and outside of Special Olympics. Take Sled Hockey. I joined sled hockey 4 years ago and ever since i have been a part of practices, I have noticed that I am determined in learning how to play all aspects of the game. Before Special Olympics I was always bullied in school so I was quiet, shy, and sometimes could be attention-seeking because of it. Now I am outgoing and always willing to try new sports. I am now trying to spread the word that, yes, we may be different but we can still do anything others can do but just in a different way. It may take us longer but we still complete the task at hand. That we dont need help unless we ask for it and that we don't need to be treated like we are babies. I am living my life to the fullest now thanks to Spe

About Jenifer Calo: Hi my name is Jeni. Yes, I am mentally challenged and proud of it. I do not let my disability get in the way of anything that I do. Yes, I may have to do some things differently or it may take me a little longer to figure out some things. I still can do it just like you can. I know some people call me a RETARD but you know what they can hate me and call me names all they want because it doesn't hurt me anymore. I have learned that many people do not accept people with any type of disability because they say it's not normal for a person to be in a wheelchair or use crutches or need hearing aids or need a guide dog or need extra help in the living world they consider us to be vermin that should be erraticated from this planet but you know what GOD created me and everyone else who is disabled for a reason for a higher purpose and that is to teach the world how to be accepting of everyone no matter if they are different.
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