So, let's get a few things out of the way here:
1. I am autistic
2. I have fine/gross motor issues, dyspraxia, & dyscalculia
3. I have PTSD, ADD, and anxiety
4. I am pretty lucky to even be writing this. I was born at 24 weeks, back in the 80s. Not exactly the best survival odds. Statistically speaking, most of the above are probably caused by my prematurity, save for the PTSD/anxiety.
My medical records are ridiculous. We're talking 3" thick of just...Stuff. You wouldn't believe the amount of testing I've had to live through. Occupational therapy, physical therapy, 6 years of eye patches thanks to retinopathy of prematurity which required surgery, countless IEP's & 504's in school, years of group therapy to try and force me to interact with other children, therapy to attempt to force me to look people in the eyes when I talk to them (talk about traumatizing a young autistic kid, folks.) I have to go to an ophthalmologist yearly in order to ascertain if the blood vessels attaching my retina to my f*cking eyeball aren't detaching/drifting/moving in ways they shouldn't. As of the last time I went, they're drifting. Slowly. We all know what that means. If my retina detaches, it could mean I end up blind in that eye. Fun! (that's sarcasm)
So all of that lovely information means that I have oh-so-many deeply personal stakes in the "magical cure" trope. Too many to even think of. Every single one of those are something I live with daily, though the most severe examples of "magical cure" trope that affects me is the autism. You thought it'd be something else? Nah. I can't drive without my glasses. I take medication to manage my ADD/depression. You don't notice my motor issues unless you're talking/walking with me. I notice people wanting to "cure" autism. All the time.
As an adult, I notice it more then I did as a child, because I see the signs of people wanting to "cure" me of my autistic traits. Eye contact, awkwardness, social interactions. I don't know what possesses a school to put a 12 year old in therapy with a stranger while being forced to look at someone they don't know while they talk to them. Thanks for that, school. I was too different. I was making people uncomfortable. I was 'being rude' by not looking at people even though it's actually physically painful for me.
You can't cure autism. I read a headline last year where some woman claimed that she cured her son's autism by going paleo. Please kindly stop talking forever, lady.
Louder for the people in the back: You can't "cure" autism. Nor PTSD. Or vision problems. You can correct vision, but it will never be 'perfect.' You can treat depression, again, it won't be perfect. You can accommodate fine/gross motor issues, but the people living with them notice the stares and whispers when people think they shouldn't 'need' the accommodations they are using.
In DAYBREAK RISING, Celosia + Kayvun never "overcome" their disabilities. Celosia has PTSD. Kayvun is blind. Always. Celosia has panic attacks. She has burn scars. Ianthe has a fine/gross motor issue in one of her hands from frostbite. None of them ever gets a 'magical cure' for their disabilities. Kayvun can 'see' the paths under her feet in the Spirit realm, to the extent that they glow/emit light--which she can sense. She can tell when it's night/day or see bright light, such as said paths. She's still blind. She can't see faces, her hands, anything other than changes in light.
Using a 'magical cure' is lazy writing. It means you didn't think about your character's life long-term with their disability. It means that you didn't do your research, or that you just don't care. In case it escaped your notice, characters with disabilities can and do live happy, fulfilling lives. To 'magically cure' them into your ideal of 'normal' is beyond inconsiderate to those living with that disability in the real world.
Every morning, I take my meds, find my glasses [please put, "Have you seen my glasses?" on my tombstone], and steel myself for another day navigating social norms as an autistic person--I didn't even touch on navigating the world as an agender person because holy shit navigating a binarist, transphobic society on top of all that? It sucks. This post's already too real as it is.
To erase the things I mentioned here is to erase everything that shaped me into who I am. All for the sake of some idyllic 'normal' happy ending? I'll stick with imperfect.
In case this was somehow unclear: Don't write ableist 'happy ending' tropes where disabilities are magically cured.
Kiran Oliver is a 31 year old writer and author residing in New Zealand with his wife and their cat, Ember.