TaLisha Grzyb is a disability advocate and Youtube Creator of Rolling Through With Life With TaLisha that has garnered over 850K views. From the outside, you see a woman in a wheelchair but you can’t see her superpower of strength and tenacity. Diagnosed at birth with Congenital Muscular Dystrophy (CMD), a condition that causes her to have weak and stiff muscles. It can also involve spinal curvature, respiratory insufficiency, intellectual disabilities, learning disabilities, eye defects, and seizures. Her mission is to show that individuals living with disabilities can accomplish their dreams and live fulfilling lives.
In addition to managing her YouTube Channel, Grzyb published her first book, “Rolling Through Life With Mommy“, a heart-warming book of love, family, and overcoming disability. There are millions of parents but not all of them have a story like TaLisha. The story is told by her three sons (all under the age of 3) who take the readers on an adventure of a day in the life of a wheelchair-bound mother. It shows a new perspective of a struggle many endure but now in the eyes of their children. One of the highlights of the book is to showcase that the adventure is not about where you go, but who you go with. The book can be purchased on Barnes and Noble and Amazon.
Fun fact! Grzyb dreamed of swimming with dolphins and it became a reality with the support of her husband. She contributes her success to having loving family and friends. Grzyb’s love story and ability to live a full life is proof that Henry Ford’s words are true, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.”
Check out our interview with her for some inspiration.
MD-EN: Are you open to sharing your disability that you live with?
Grzyb: Yes, I’m definitely open to sharing the disability that I live with. Hence the reason I decided to become a Disability Influencer.
MD-EN: How does your disability impact your daily life and career?
Grzyb: To be honest, my disability doesn’t at all impact my quality of life. The obvious impact that my disability has on my overall daily life is that I’m unable to walk. Due to this fact, I have weaker muscles so things such as lifting my children and dressing myself I have difficulty with. However, with the help of my amazing support system, I’m able to complete all my tasks throughout the day despite the limitations that my disability may place on my overall independence.
MD-EN: What employment barriers or barriers does society place on people who live with a similar disability? And how do you overcome those barriers?
Grzyb: As far as barriers are concerned, people with disabilities are protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This federal legislation protects the disability community from being discriminated against due to the nature of their disability. Because of the ADA barriers rarely exist within the employment setting. When barriers do arise, the disabled person just has to ask for accommodations which would make it easier to complete their job duties. This could be anything from requesting a modified work schedule, extended break times, or voice recognition software to help with typing duties.
MD-EN: Are there any myths that you would like to dismantle when it comes to people who live with a disability and their ability to gain full-time employment or pursue entrepreneurship?
Grzyb: Many people assume that persons with a disability are not able to work. With the right support, people with disabilities can go on to have promising careers of their choice.
MD-EN: What inspired you to start a Youtube Channel?
Grzyb: My reason for wanting to start a YouTube is simple — I wanted to not only talk about, but rather show that people with disabilities can and do have fulfilling lives. This includes attending college, getting married, and starting a family. I wanted to inspire others by giving them hope while watching my videos.
MD-EN: How are you able to follow your dreams? What motivates you to keep going when you get discouraged?
Grzyb: I’m able to follow my dreams because I have such an amazing support system. This has been from the beginning. Since I was born, my mother has always encouraged me and supported me to follow my dreams and anything that I do. The support system that I have has only extended as I’ve gotten older. What motivates me when I get discouraged is knowing that I’m blessed no matter what because people always have it worse than you do.
MD-EN: What words of encouragement would you give to people who feel defeated by their disability and believe they will need government assistance for the rest of their lives?
Grzyb: The words of encouragement that I would give is that just because you may be a person that needs government assistance, it doesn’t mean you are less than anyone. It just means you need help and everyone needs help. You can still be positive, and great. It doesn’t take a rich person to change the world. Everyone has the ability to make a positive impact in their own way. Become a volunteer in an area that you feel passionate about. Network as much as you can because no one has achieved success on their own. Your circumstances don’t define you, faith does. If you believe, you can and will achieve.
Watch Grzyb’s love story by clicking here.