Dear young Vanessa,
I know you’re about to undergo another operation, in fact I’ve lost count. You were born with a congenital deformity, despite having many surgeries, it’s a long- term condition but I want you to know things are going to be fine.
Your unseen disability does not define you! Your journey maybe longer than everyone else’s and you will have many setbacks, but you’re going to do well in life.
According to statistics, the odds are against you, a young black girl with a disability growing up in Hackney, but with your faith, family and friends to support you, you will surpass all expectations!
Let me tell you about your future…
Your journey will not be like the typical teen that leaves school goes to college and straight to university. It happens, but over a period of time. In fact you go to university as a mature student in your 30’s, but don’t be alarmed it was the right time in your life.
You will go through bouts of depression because of your disability and feel that you are not accepted by society, you will feel intimidated and suffer with low self-esteem, but with your determination, perseverance, and tenacity you will overcome many hurdles.
The turning point in your life will come when you read your medical notes “Vanessa has not accepted her condition” you will be angry and in denial, but the moment you accept your condition little do you know that your metamorphosis will begin.
You home in on your strengths and begin to believe in yourself, which will lead you to pursue a career in law. In 2013 you will complete a law degree and secure a job at EIP as a Patent Paralegal. Within this role you will be promoted twice within 3 years you will participate in the recruitment process, mentor new patent paralegals, lead projects and help to drive initiatives forward and you will travel across the world to represent EIP.
Who knew young Vanessa that this was possible or even achievable when you were laying on a hospital bed? My final piece of advice, set yourself no limits and be proud to be…you!
Written by Vanessa Johnrose, Executive Paralegal, EIP.
At EIP, we are committed to diversity and inclusion. We believe in equal opportunity in all areas and we are proud that diversity is a core part of our culture.