33-year-old woman who has never driven a car isn't letting her disorder stop her anymore
Hoover, Ala. —
Driving to the store is often viewed as just an errand we check off our to do lists. But for one local 33-year-old woman the thought of driving to the store brings a huge smile to her face because she's never done it before.
Wilma Brown calls the scars on her arms her "war wounds" from having her bones break about 200 times.
"I was born with a condition called Osteogenesis Imperfecta, it's a brittle bone disease, it just means by bones break really easily," says Brown.
She's had surgeries to correct the deformities from her bones breaking so many times. But with her disease it takes a long time for her bones to heal. Her leg is still healing from surgery in January. She does not get out much.
"I'm so dependent on whoever would want to pick me up or take me somewhere," says Brown.
Growing up Brown lost both her parents. That's when her home schooling stopped and she sat back and watched her sisters live their lives.
"I so didn't want to be a burden, that was my fear, I kept looking at myself in my condition and the best I could do for my family was to let them do the best that they can."
Brown says with her Osteogenisis Imperfecta she didn't think she was worth it. Now she's had a change of heart.
"So many other people with my condition they're just not sitting in a box, they have jobs and families and I came to a place where I thought why is that not me?"
She's now taking GED classes, wants to go to college, and get a job. She also wants to be more active in her church. Most of all she wants independence. Brown believes learning to drive a handicap accessible vehicle with hand brakes will give her freedom.
"It makes me feel so hopeful just because I never really saw that for my life. I never really saw myself just leaving my house and getting in a car by myself and going somewhere."
And eventually she wants to return the favors and drive her sisters somewhere. "Maybe give them some rides for once you know like I'll take you to Walmart!" Brown does have her driver's permit now. She says it will probably take between six and eight months for her to learn how to drive with hand brakes before she can get her license. Her biggest hurdle now is getting the $60 thousand handicap accessible vehicle to learn on and drive once she has her license. She's set up a GoFundMe to help her reach her goal.