A disabled man from the US and his able-bodied girlfriend want to remove the stigma around disabilities by documenting their relationship on a vlog called Squirmy and Grubs, Independent reports.
Shane Burcaw (26) – who suffers from Spinal Muscular Atrophy, a genetic disorder that affects voluntary muscle movement – and Hannah Aylward (25) first got in contact three years ago after his now-girlfriend saw a documentary about his life made by actor Rainn Wilson (52) and decided to message him, Metro reports.
After the pair got to know each other through texting and phone calls, Hannah – who lives and studies in Minnesota – decided to visit Shane, who lived in Pennsylvania at the time.
After spending just a few days together, they knew they wanted to be together and make their long-distance relationship work.
In 2018, they started their YouTube channel, highlighting the funny moments in their relationship and addressing some assumptions people make when they see them in public.
“Our goal is to normalise disability and relationships such as ours,” Shane said in an interview with Daily Mail.
He noted that he felt anxious and excited after getting Hannah’s text.
“I’ll never forget the way my heart felt so light and beat so rapidly as I willed my atrophied fingers to type out a response as quickly as they could manage,” he said.
“I knew right away that I needed to know this person,” he added.
Shane has authored three books, all of which highlight his light-hearted view of life and his disease.
His latest offering, Strangers Assume My Girlfriend Is My Nurse is expected to be on shelves as early as April 2019.
The happy couple currently live together in an apartment in Minnesota while Hannah is finishing off her degree.