So. I did a thing. I did a boudoir photo shoot. And I am flaunting it and proud! I did this shoot for many reasons. The first reason is for MYSELF and not for anyone else, but I’m happy to share it with you guys! The second is that I wanted to be able to do something sexy and not only feel sexy but I want to show people that it’s possible for people with disabilities to be sexy. The third reason is because the Groupon I found was a great fucking deal. Often times, people with disabilities are not seen as sexual beings and quite frankly it really pisses me off. One of the most popular questions I ever get when the subject of my disability comes up is, “Can you have sex?”

Yes. People with disabilities can have sex. Believe it or not. For those of you that don’t know how sex works……………. I won’t go there. BUT, it’s a ridiculous reality people with disabilities live in everyday. People with disabilities have to work twice as hard just to show people we are capable of being sexy or scoring a date or having relationships. Now, I’m not saying it doesn’t happen… but it’s not always as easy as it can be for able bodied people.

Why is this? Why does sitting down constitute the inability to be or perform sexually? We’re not frozen solid and our asses are not nearly glued to our seats.

Society has molded what sexy is, who sexy is, and how sexy is.

But it’s such a limited view of the reality of sexy.

I’ve come to a point in my life where I am confident enough to say that I am in charge of my own tomorrow. I am Muslim, so I grew up in a very conservative household. It’s interesting growing up in this sort of household when you have a disability because it makes it a little more difficult to find yourself, especially in America. For example, growing up I wasn’t allowed to wear shorts or tank tops because a woman’s body is not meant to be shown off. It’s a sign of respect for yourself and to God. Since I have a disability and need help getting dressed, I didn’t really have too much say in what I wore. Plus, my mom also had terrible style so it made it that much harder.

Anyways… being able to find myself and become confident took a long time. Surrounding myself with people that love you and themselves and can truly make the biggest difference.

Learning to love yourself is not easy. It took me a very long time to get to where I am now and it can be mentally draining at times. I love being able to feel good about myself and my body especially having a disability. I’ve got what me and alex like to call “SMA body.” I have prominent ribs, rods in my spine, hip and knee contractures. Not your typical hourglass body. This alone makes it hard for people with disabilities to feel sexy or pretty because of what society has perceived to be a perfect body. There are some people that go through extreme workout plans to get that perfect hourglass body and have that option. I don’t have that option. I don’t really have any options to change my body to look “beautiful.” Being able to accept your imperfections makes you feel and look more beautiful; because at the end of the day, your imperfections are what make you your own perfect. (Super cliché… I know)

I’m not a perfect person. I have my insecurities too, but I would just much rather focus on what I love about myself which ultimately helps me accept the “not-so-perfect” parts. This photoshoot wasn’t just a confidence booster for me. It helped me find another part of me. It helped me figure out that my wheelchair doesn’t always have to be a part of my image, physically and figuratively. Yes, it is a part of me but it definitely can mask some really great bodily features. E.g. My ass.

Kidding. Kind of. Not really. It’s a great feeling to show people that my ass actually isn’t glued to the seat…. mind blowing, I know.

For those of you that didn’t just scroll to the bottom to see my photos… thanks for reading (:

Crippling Reality of Love

Letter to myself when I fall in love: 

You’re in a good place. I never thought this day would come honestly. Sure people tell you you’re pretty all the time but it doesn’t compensate for what love can make you feel. For years there was no one you were even remotely interested in. And other years you found yourself just settling for whatever came your way. It was all because you never thought it could or would become a reality. 

You’re confident. It shows. Some may call you conceited. Sure. You don’t really care. But what people didn’t know was that you didn’t believe a man could love you. And see you for you. And accept your idiocy sometimes. And your weirdness. And dramatic rants. And your ADD. And lastly…. your disability. 

It’s so fucked up because everyone knows you as this person that does not by any means let your disability get in the way of ANYTHING. Yet, love is the only thing in the world that made you mentally confused and torn. You tell yourself your disability isn’t what defines you. That you’re just like everyone else. That you can do anything. So why did you think this?

It’s because that’s the way YOU think. You are confident in yourself. But you were never confident in the male population. To think the way you think. To see the things you see. To accept you the way you accept yourself. 

Sure you got along with guys and can make friends with the snap of your fingers. But to get a guy to see you in a way that’s more than just a cool girl to drink with… is very difficult. It’s a special kind of effort. 

You had to love a little extra to prove you’re capable. To show him that it’s not scary to be with someone that has a physical disability. That, yes, you can have sex. 

Enjoy the love he gives because you’ve earned it. You deserve nothing but the best. You deserve love and respect and honesty. 

I’m proud you didn’t settle because you thought you had to. I’m proud you found yourself. I’m proud that you’re happy. I’m proud you finally learned what true love means.


Perspective time. 

All an able bodied girl needs to do is wear a low cut shirt and a mini skirt and walk by a man and instantly get looked at sexually. The love part usually comes after this initial encounter.

If I wore a low cut shirt and tight skirt and rolled past a dude it’s not like I can catwalk past him and strut my stuff. And the only ass he’s seeing when I roll past is 300 pounds of steel and wheels. 

The more I think about it, I’m not insecure in myself finding love. I’m just skeptical about every guy that walks by. For some reason, I’ve convinced myself that I’m not capable of love. I convinced myself that a guy who’s trying to flirt with me is only doing it to be “nice.” I convinced myself that guys will have sex with anyone so that doesn’t lead up to love in my case. Because what guy would love me. Society somehow made me believe that no one will ever truly love me because of something I can’t control. But I’m wrong. 

I’m not in love with anyone. I’m not sure I’ve ever even been in love, but everyone has their flaws and love is still everywhere. We can hold off on marriage for a while… but when I love something or someone, it’s strong and true. There are so many loving couples out there with baggage and flaws yet all that stuff doesn’t matter if it’s real and unconditional. It makes me sad that I actually feel this way. It makes me even sadder that it’s a common misconception that most disabled people feel.

    I believe in you. 

    “Dear Julianna” is a campaign that was created by adults with neuromuscular diseases to help kids with the same neuromuscular diseases feel more confident in the skin they’re in. Julianna is a 5-year-old girl with CMT (a type of muscular dystrophy) who ultimately wants to choose “Heaven” instead of living through a life with her disability in the event that she gets too sick and has to choose to fight through it or give up her life. This campaign was made to show Julianna, and other kids like Julianna, that life with a disability can be challenging but worth living and fighting for. These adults are sharing their stories and hardships within these letters and showing these kids that we are still living, and very happily, at that. I wanted to join the movement and wrote a letter to Julianna that I wanted to share with you. Here’s a link to the news story about Julianna if any of you haven’t heard of it or are curious.

    CNN-Julianna News Story
    Here’s my personal letter to Julianna. Enjoy! 

    Dear Julianna,

    Everyone is unique in their own way. Including you. And you should share that with the world. You are the best person out there that can tell your own story. Your story is like no one else’s. And people can learn from you along the way!

    Every person with or without a disability is like you in some way or another, so you don’t ever have to feel alone. A lot of people are afraid of what others will think of them if they feel like they don’t fit in or are different. Just know that if you think you’re weird, the person next to you might be weirder and you’d have no idea. So don’t be afraid, the world isn’t as scary as people make it out to be. The world is only scary when we focus on all the reasons the world CAN be scary. We’re all trying to find our place in this world to make us feel like we belong. Your mission is to find your own happy ending. To figure out where in this world makes you happy. And your disability is only going to help you find that answer. Your disability will actually make you stronger. It will empower you to think differently. To be a keen observer of society. To really appreciate things that seems so minuscule like curb cuts or spacious public bathroom stalls. 

    I could sit here and tell you about my disability and how it’s helped me become the person I am today. But this isn’t about me. This is about you. I want you to really be able to grasp the person you are and embrace it. Just because you have a physical disability it does not make you any less of a person. It does not make you mentally incapable. It does not make you incapable of doing. And finally it definitely does not mean you can’t face obstacles that seem close to impossible for a disabled person. The key is to believe in who you are and who you want to be. You’re the pilot of this plane. Now, just think. Where do you want to go?

    It’s up to you to decide how far you wish to push your abilities. Even if it’s just picking a pencil up off the floor. Are you going to wait for someone to come home to pick it up? Or are you going to try and do it yourself first? Using a back scratcher maybe? Or sticking tape to the end of stick/or ruler and grabbing it? Or what about living on your own as an adult? Do you want to live by your own rules and feel as independent as possible? Or depend on your parents for every thing? Do you want to put yourself out there and open up to the idea of finding PAs on your own? And living by your own terms?

    Your disability is made out to what you make it to be. Don’t let your disability control you, you control it! If you tell yourself “I can’t,” then you won’t. If you tell yourself “I’ll try,” you’re brave. If you tell yourself “I will,” then you will. 

    Having a physical disability is completely subjective. There’s not a default way of completing a task. There’s no instruction booklet on how to tie a rope to a doorknob and pull the string to shut doors. Or how to use a broom to reach high things. There’s no single person that can tell you what you’re capable of doing or how exactly it should be done.

    Just know this, just because you have a unique way of completing a task that’s different from able-bodied people, doesn’t mean you’re doing anything wrong and it doesn’t make you any less “normal.” Nobody is “normal” whether it’s clear to the naked eye or not. There isn’t even an accurate definition of the word normal when it comes to society. You do you. And be proud of your independence you’ve worked so hard to gain. Be proud that while everyone else around you is doing things in black and white, you’re doing everything in color. Be proud that you are you. Be proud that you found a way. Be proud that you believe in yourself. Be proud that you’re brave enough to face the world on your own. Be proud that you’re not letting your disability define you. Be proud that you have control. 

    While everyone’s posting pictures of themselves, I want to share a special symbol with you. 

    Before I tell you what this symbol means to me, I want to think about what it would mean to you. This is the 3E Love symbol. Stands for embrace, empower, educate. 

    The meaning of this symbol is created through your own interpretation. 

    To me, this symbol means acceptance. Independence. Unlimited possibilities. Happiness. Confidence. 

    This symbol, to me, reminds me that I am who I am and there’s nothing wrong with that. It shows me my disability does not define the person I am. It shows me that I am strong enough to do whatever I set my mind to. It shows me that I can’t give up when all odds seem against me. 

    So, my final words to you is to never stop trying. Stay you. You are not alone. And you, most certainly, can do whatever it is you set your mind to. As time progresses, society is becoming more and more accessible to the needs of people with disabilities. There’s always a way around an obstacle. Your job is to find the alternative path. 

    I bid you good luck on this journey. I hope I was able to shed some light. 

    If you believe in yourself, the rest of the world will follow. 
    Yours truly,

    Saws. 💙

    If anyone is interested in reading more letters here is the link to the campaign.  Don’t be afraid to like and support the movement on Facebook as well!

    Dear Julianna Website
    Dear Julianna Facebook Page

    Take What You Can Get.

    I know I’m not the strongest person. But I’m as strong as I can be.
    I know I’m not the smartest person. But I know i know some things that others might not.
    I know I can’t walk. But I know I can rock a wheelchair just as good as a girl in yogas.
    I know I’m not perfect. But perfectly imperfect.
    I know I’m not normal. But I don’t care to be.
    I know I’m not the most popular person. But I have a small amount of best friends that I love way too much and would never switch them for more people.
    I know I’m not the most religious. But I have my own beliefs.
    I know I’m not the prettiest. But that doesn’t mean I can’t be confident.
    I know I’m not the most creative. But I like to act like I am.
    I know I’m not the best singer… Not even close. But the hell it’s gonna stop me from singing.
    I know I can’t help everyone that needs it. But I like to believe I can.
    I know I’m not most open person. But I love to let people in and figure things out.
    I know I’m not the happiest person. But everyone needs a shoulder sometimes.
    I know I’m not the nicest person. But I would never do anything to intentionally hurt someone. Ever.
    I know I don’t always have the best ideas. But I love contributing.

    Just because you’re not ‘the best’ or ‘the most’ at something… Doesn’t mean you should stop doing it. Just know what you’re capable of and hold on to it. Cuz chances are… There’s probably someone worse than you. 😜


    Mirror, Mirror. Are you the fairest?

    It’s interesting to know what people see when they look in the mirror.
    Confidence is so important. I can’t stress it enough. Confidence, to me, means that you stick to what you believe in because it correlates with you, personally, not your friends or family or soulmate. Confidence is saying a different answer that isn’t the popular choice. Confidence is seeing what makes you better than the next person. So I must ask, are you confident?
    Id hope the answer is yes.
    I believe I’m confident. I really do. I sometimes find myself being really insecure or unsure about the world, but I think that’s completely ordinary. People have their days, right?
    But in general, I am confident. I’m confident in what I believe in.
    What do I believe in? I believe in being a good person. I believe in everybody having their own faith. I believe that everyone has a voice and opinion, and I love to hear them. I believe that there is more than one answer to any problem. And lastly, I believe in myself.
    When everyone else in the classroom says yes, I find a reason to say no.
    I like knowing that I can have my own voice and others will listen. I like knowing that I can look in the mirror and smile at what i see.
    I know I sound like a total fruit, but there are a lot of people in the world who aren’t as confident, so maybe this can help.

    Now. I’m making this up as I go along so bare with me. Hopefully some of you will try this too.

    Look in the mirror. What do you see? Not just physically.
    When I look in the mirror I see, starting from the top:
    A strong girl, mentally of course. No makeup and unbrushed hair.
    A huge heart, lots of love, and a pretty laced bralette.
    A bigger appetite than perceived but willing to give up the food on my plate for my little siblings that ask for some.
    And tiny legs that are pretty useless but then I see a $45,000 bedazzled wheelchair that makes me feel as normal as possible. Seriously. I’ve had friends forget to hold open doors for me and then say “sorry I forgot you were in a wheelchair.” Because when they see ME they don’t see a disabled girl. They see Sawsan.

    Confidence can control your life and you won’t even realize it. The only person fighting back from you being confident, is yourself. Find yourself. Make a day of it. Write it down. Change your wardrobe. Bake a cake. Compliment a person you don’t know. Ask someone on a date, if you get rejected then all the more reason to ask the hotter guy out next door instead. Kiss a hobo… Not really. But I won’t judge if you do.
    I use my confidence to inspire people and to make them happy. That’s what makes me confident.