This woman took a bath for the first time in her adult life: 'It was everything'

Yahoo Lifestyle

When Ruby Van Leuven sank into a bath for the first time in her adult life, she wanted to share her triumph with the world.

The makeup artist from Adelaide, Australia, was born with arthrogryposis — a disability that disturbs joint development and limits limb mobility. Despite her condition, Van Leuven leads a full and meaningful life. Simple pleasures, like taking a bath, however, are far and few between.

“Bath time is back!” (Photo: rvbyallegra/Instagram)
“Bath time is back!” (Photo: rvbyallegra/Instagram)

Having a bath was “always without a doubt my favorite thing when I was little,” she said in an Instagram post. “The warmth, the bubbles, the weightlessness of the water. It was a safe space and a space which provided relief from chronic pain.”

But by the time she was 10, her soapy sanctuary was no longer practical. “By this time I had become too heavy for mum and dad to carry safely, so bath time stopped,” she said.

Close to 15 years later, Van Leaven made the return to her happy place. She shared the moment with more than 24,000 Instagram followers earlier this week.

Yesterday. Yesterday was a milestone day for me. I had a bath. Seems simple, I know. But it was everything, and more. Bath time was always without a doubt my favourite thing when I was little. The warmth, the bubbles, the weightlessness of the water. It was a safe space, and a space which provided relief from chronic pain. Up until probably about grade 4 or 5, my parents used to lift me manually into and out of the bath. By this time I had become too heavy for mum and dad to carry safely, so bath time stopped. Almost fifteen (15) years later, I have been loaned a lifter with a sling (pictured in the second image), which allows me to be hoisted in and out of the bath with ease. Bath time is back!! Last night I shared a three (3) hour bubble bath with one of my beautiful best friends @emillie.jayne and it was glorious and warm and bubbly and sparkly and magical. Rest assured bath times will now be a regular thing. I’m coming for you @lush_ausnz 2018, the year of accessibility. ♿️ #accessibility #cripplepunk #mobilityaids . . . [Image descriptions: Image 1 – Ruby is sitting in the bath, covered in bubbles. They are looking down with a big smile and holding a glass of red wine in their hand. Image 2 – Ruby is in the bath in a sling attached to a hoist, with a huge grin across their face. Image 3 – Photo from the side of Ruby sitting in the bath playing with the bubbles. Image 4 – Ruby is resting their head on their arms over the side of the tub, with their eyes closed. The bath water is blue and sparkly.]

A post shared by Ruby Allegra (@rvbyallegra) on Feb 20, 2018 at 3:08pm PST

“I have been loaned a lifter with a sling, which allows me to be hoisted in and out of the bath with ease. Bath time is back!” she captioned the images.

“Last night I shared a three hour bubble bath with one of my beautiful best friends @emillie.jayne and it was glorious and warm and bubbly and sparkly and magical. Rest assured bath times will now be a regular thing.”

Van Leaven has never allowed her disability to dictate her destiny. The 23-year-old made headlines earlier this month while pushing for disabled visibility in the beauty industry. The art student and activist, who has long been vocal in the fight for equality, dedicates her life to inspiring others.

The trailblazer closed her post by declaring “2018, the year of accessibility.”

Go, Ruby!

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