Keeping It Real: Soren and Rindi, Part One

Thu 21 Mar 2024

Keeping It Real: Soren and Rindi, Part One
By Soren and Rindi

We recently connected with Rindi Cullen-Martin and her son, Soren, and asked them to share their personal experiences with cerebral palsy. We’ll share Soren’s story first and Rindi’s story will start next week.

Soren, describe what it’s like for you to grow up with cerebral palsy. 

Growing up, I’ve had a lot of support from family and friends, both physical and not. I think I have a pretty good life, although I think some things could be better. I’ve been to physical therapy in the past, but not too recently, and I have had 2 surgeries, one recently for my feet specifically, and another before that did things for different parts of my legs and feet.

What’s your relationship with your cerebral palsy?
To me, my condition is something like an annoying teammate; we have to work together, and though I try my best, it always seems to make it harder.

What kinds of things do you do for fun? Do you have to make adaptations to do them?
I love gaming, which doesn’t require much accommodation, and I also like hanging out with friends, which I do need help to do, whether it be helping me go the bathroom or just get somewhere to meet with them.

on the left is a smiling boy with brown hair and braces, wearing a red t-shirt with white writing. his smiling mom with dark curly hair leans into him. she's wearing a sea green shirt

Soren and Rindi

What achievement are you most proud of and why?
I would say that the achievement I’m most proud of is being able to walk better, specifically with better posture and foot stability, since it was a major accomplishment for me in my goals to be able to walk without assistance.

What do you hope to achieve in the next few years?
I would like to finish high school with good grades and keeping improving my walking.

What advice would you give your younger self?
Don’t wait to do the work. DON’T PROCRASTINATE.

What do you wish other people knew about what it’s like to have cerebral palsy?
I wish they knew just how hard it is to figure out how to do things differently. Just to be able to achieve the same goal, because often there is no easy remedy or work-around for most obstacles we face in daily life.

What advice would you give others with cerebral palsy?
Do whatever it takes to achieve your goals, whether that is exercises or whatever you may need to do; don’t wait to do it.

Is there anything else you’d like to share about yourself?
I try to be as open and friendly as possible with anyone I meet, although I can be shy at times.

Thu 11 Apr 2024

In the first part of our newest Science Spotlight blog, learn how scientists can harness electricity to help with movement disorders that sometimes accompany cerebral palsy.

Thu 04 Apr 2024

Check out the final part of Rindi and Soren’s story.