The Wolf Finally Frees Itself - a column by Brianna Albers

dream, cybernetics, meditations, disability visibility, early start times, truth

Brianna (she/her) is a crip cyborg storyteller living in Minneapolis-St. Paul. She was diagnosed with SMA Type II at 9 months of age and lives with co-occurring physical and mental health conditions. By day, she works as an advocate, bridging disability and mental health awareness to empower people to live their best lives; by night, she dabbles in imagination, and is in the process of making the book of her heart, “#WaningCrescent,” the best it can be. Find her online at www.briannahopealbers.com and on social media @briehalbers.

I’m Taking My Time Returning to Normal

It’s not just the closeness, the sudden proximity to people other than my parents. It’s not just the dearth of mask mandates. (You’ll pry mine from my stone-cold, long-dead hands.) It’s not even the sense of possibility — for the first time in over a year, I can go places,…

Naming Disability as a Space of Possibility

A few days ago, I linked my friend Sherry to an article on spatial abolition and disability justice. I knew a few paragraphs into the article that I would be sending it to Sherry. Given her interest in disability justice and accessibility, it seemed like a match made…

Pride Cometh Before the Side Effects

It’s not that I didn’t think I’d have side effects. I hoped. Just like I hoped that COVID-19 would wind down by late last summer; just like I hoped “The Rise of Skywalker” would be, like, tolerable. But I knew better. It was a vaccine, after all, and a gnarly…

The Green-eyed Elephant in the Room

Let’s talk about the green-eyed elephant in the room. I’m a naturally jealous person. The therapist in me is convinced that my childhood has something to do with it — all those hours on the playground watching the kids on the monkey bars, wishing quietly for a body like…

As SMA Treatments Advance, History Has Its Eyes on Us

I’ve dreamed of cures. Miracles that occur in the blink of an eye. One minute, I’m sitting in my wheelchair, and the next, I’m standing, walking, running. I’m wobbly on my feet, of course, and crying, because everything has changed, and I’m probably overwhelmed by the newness of it all…

The Evrysdi Chronicles: Full Speed Ahead

According to my mother, my columns are the first result when you Google “Evrysdi (risdiplam) denial.” Which isn’t surprising. I’ve written several scathing columns about the application process, from verifying my diagnosis to correcting blatantly false insurance claims. The squeaky wheel gets the grease, or so the…

3 Melatonin Pills a Night Keep the Hallucinations at Bay

I see things that aren’t there. The writer in me realizes that, at first blush, this sounds like the opening line of a young adult novel. Take, for example, Maggie Stiefvater’s “The Raven Boys,” which opens with, “Blue Sargent had forgotten how many times she’d been told that she…