Why the AHCA has me worried about my future

Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. 

It's a motto many Americans live by every day in search of the American dream. 

Including myself. 

Every since I was a kid, my family instilled in me the drive and work ethic needed to succeed in life. 

Go to school, graduate from college and get a job. 

Everything was going to plan; graduate high school, check. Graduate from Arizona State University with a Bachelor's and Master's degree, check. After college, get a job and start my career in marketing and journalism, check. 

It seemed like my pursuit of happiness was on the right path, but it seems we've come across a road block that could be unpassable. 

Now my story is no more significant or important than the millions of other Americans living in this country, but the recent political climate has urged me to share my story. 

I am one of the estimated 56 million people with a disability in the United States and my future, along with many other Americans with disabilities, is in serious jeapordy. 

The recent developments of the proposed American Health Care Act could have disastrous implications for those with disabilities, including severe cuts to Medicaid

If passed, this bill could take away services and eliminate insurance for more than 23 million people living with disabilities. We could also see increased institutionalization of people with disabilities if this bill goes through.

Medicaid is a necessity for low income families and people with disabilities as they rely on this service for assistance with insurance and other necessary programs. 

For me, this new bill could severely hinder my ability to do many of the day-to-day activities many take for granted. 

As a quadriplegic, I rely on Personal Care Attendants to assist me in virtually every daily task. 

From taking showers to going to the restroom, I require help from attendants to ensure I can function effectively. It's a service that if taken away, could drastically impact my quality of life. 

Without this service, not only would my quality of life suffer, but it would be a good chance that I would also not be able to hold any type of steady employment and even be forced to live in a group home in the future. 

Even though I've used an electric wheelchair for almost 20 years, I've been gainfully employed since graduations college in 2006. 

From working at an online high school to a digital marketing company, to my current job as a Social Media Producer at 12 News, I've thankfully never known life among the unemployed. 

But that could all change if the new American Health Care Act passes. And it's a future I hope never comes to fruition. 

Not having a regular care attendant means not knowing when I would even be able to get out of bed everyday and possibly never having the ability to even regularly leave my house. 

Right now, my father provides the care I need to be a successful, contributing member to society. But one day, his ability to give me care will be gone and I will be at the mercy of companies providing attendant care. 

But if there is no Medicaid, these services could be limited to non-existant. 

This isn't a red issue or a blue issue. This isn't about cutting corners to save money. It's about providing simple human decency to those who need it the most. 

The biggest questions I deal with shouldn't be if I'll be able to go take a shower or even go to the bathroom that day. They should be about how to get that promotion at work or what to say to that pretty girl across the street. 

It's very much an uncertain future as we await the decision on the American Health Care Act.

In the meantime, I urge everyone, both people with disabilities and able-bodied people alike, to call their senators at (202) 224-3121 and tell them to vote NO on the American Health Care bill

As I join the millions of others with disabilities waiting to learn the fate of the AHCA, I will do what I can to live the American dream for as long as I'm afforded the ability to do so. 

I will continue to fight and show that a disability shouldn't mean the death of liberty.

Those living with a disability should be afforded the ability to pursue happiness just like everyone else.

While our limbs may have failed our bodies, our strength, courage and hope for the future will never keep us from making the American dream a reality.