Happy birthday to Stacey Park Milbern, my disability justice hero. She would have been 35 on May 19. I didn’t know her, but I love her. She’s my disabled ancestor.
The morning of her birthday, Ming and I listened to her crip socks essay that I read aloud and posted on my soundcloud. I hugged Ming as I cried and cried. He cried also. I’ve read and listened to that essay countless times, and it still teaches me. What a brilliant person.
I cried because Stacey Park Milbern died at such a young age. Wow, what amazing things she might have done into middle age and old age. I cried because I need the truths she shared so badly. The truths beak open the lies I was told most of my life about what is strength, what is community, and who has worth.
I cried because it’s almost just chance that I even know who she is. It was fat liberation work that helped me learn about her. Our culture doesn’t teach us so much of what we need to know.
I was interviewed about what’s most important to me the day before Stacey Park Milbern’s birthday. My acquaintance Dabby Longlegs interviewed me–it will probably be shared in a month. The picture I include with this post is a selfie I took in an excited mood right before the interview began.
Thank you to Ming for sticking the disability justice sign back up on the wall. And thank you to Ming for supporting me in getting ready for this interview. Thank you for helping me clear my calendar and keep my stress low before and after, to do the work of telling my truth on camera.
happy birthday to Stacey Park Milbern
Ming wore his Disability Justice is Love shirt to the serving site this morning, and two people asked him about it. Luckily I’d made this card beforehand for him to show anyone who asked. Kinda like a meme, but analog!
She actually died on her 33rd birthday–I got that wrong.
Thank you to everyone who works for justice in all the ways you do. Thank you for seeing me and many disabled people as worthy, valuable, and valid. I love you!