As my Twitter profile says… “Father, husband, Baseball Coach, part-time motivational speaker, & full-time Web & Senior UI/UX Engineer at Quicken Loans.” But there is one very descriptive thing missing from that… Extremely good looking! No for real, what’s missing is the part about me being disabled, and being born without hands. Well I keep that out for a reason, and that’s because I don’t want you to see me as a guy with a disability I want you to see me as who I am… Someone that has never let anything stand in my way, a guy with a passion for helping people and showing others that with positive thinking anything is possible.
There’s been many things written about me over the years but one of my favorites is a mini-bro written by a good friend of mine, Mr. Jim Mcfarlin (@wordgrouch).
Mini-Bio Written by Jim Mcfarlin
The earliest memory Ryan Hudson Peralta can bring to mind – the image that in many ways has defined the whole of his life – is the sight of his mother, Kimberly, explaining to him what the doctors had told her about his condition. “It’s almost unbelievable I can still remember this, since I was only about 2,” Ryan says. “Maybe even younger.”
Perhaps it was his mother’s emotional sobs punctuating her words that make the vision so memorable. “She was telling me, ‘They say you can’t do it, but I know you can!’” he recalls. “When I was born, they told her, ‘Your son’s never going to be able to go to a regular school, or have kids, or get out of a wheelchair, or drive a car. He’ll never be able to use a regular this or an electric that.’ Basically, they said I was going to be in a bubble my entire life. They asked my mom if my parents even wanted to keep me.”
That’s because Ryan was diagnosed with a birth defect called Congenital Limb Deficiency, which gave him severely shortened arms without hands and legs that stopped growing above the knee. Now in his thirties, Ryan has proved those physicians and all doubters wrong while validating his mother’s faith in his resolve.
A gifted and creative web & graphic designer, using a standard computer mouse and keyboard in place of hands, Ryan has designed more than 450 Web sites for professional clients nationwide through his own company, NewMedia3, served as creative director for two Detroit-based magazines, worked for 5 years as a civilian employee of the U.S. Army and is currently working for Quicken Loans in downtown Detroit as a Web & User Interface designer. Most important to him, Ryan is a devoted husband and father; he and his wife, Carrie, have two healthy and active children, Myranda and Noah.
He has improvised ways to perform everyday tasks that most of us take for granted. Not only does he drive his own vehicle, but Ryan also refuses to let his disability keep him from enjoying life to the fullest. He rides jet skis and four-wheeled ATVs, and can’t wait to get back in the air again after flying a plane for the first time in 2010. A passionate baseball lover and Detroit Tigers fan, he regularly manages his son Noah’s travel baseball team, the Eastside Niners. Fulfilling yet another lifelong dream, in 2010 he was offered an acting role opposite Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul in the independent movie Right Angle that was filmed in Metro-Detroit. He cherishes his independence and refuses to let any obstacle get in his way.
“No matter what happens in life, it could always be worse,” Ryan says. “I’m just doing what everybody else should be doing. My motto is, ‘If you can’t fix it, forget it’ – and I’m not talking about your car, either.”
An aspiring motivational speaker, Ryan Hudson Peralta has made several speaking engagements around his native southeast Michigan and is eager to expand his message of perseverance and self-reliance to audiences worldwide. He is presently working on his first book, a chronicle of his life and experiences thus far.
Its working title? Look, Mom – No Hands.