Living and laughing with a disability - cerebral palsy; ordinary life, extraordinary circumstances.

Friday, April 21, 2006

New Products

New Products for the disabled from the Naidex show in England. I like "The Camel", which helps a person get up when they have fallen.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006


Blogging against diablism is set for May1st.

Disablism is a term new word to me linguistically, but its meaning is something I have known since I was old enough to realize people were staring at me because I was different, laughing at the way I walked, focused more on the strangeness of my speech rather than trying to understand what I was saying.

Retard. There's a disablism that still makes me wince. For some reason, it's the term I most frequently hear from people who are inclined to make fun of me.

The term seems barbaric and loaded with hate.

Perhaps people who call me "retard" because my disability make them uncomfortable, or it might be a chance for them to lift themselves up.

"Crippled" is a term I don't care for, but some people, particularly older people, use it as a descriptive term without meaning it as a slam.

"Retard" is a slam, whoever uses it.

I don't like that word!

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Am I really disabled now?

Am I really disabled now?

I took my scooter to work this week. I work in support at a state social service office.

Our office is in a strip mall, and was formerly a grocery store. I sit in the front on one side, and the restrooms are in the back on the other side. It is a hike for me.

Four years ago or so I had back surgery for a herniated disk. It took away most of the pain that I have, but no all.

I have cerebral palsy. I free walk, but my gait is very unsteady. Walking distances has gotten tougher for me.

A couple falls of late have increased the pain, hence I decided to take my scooter to work.

People look at me differently when I am on my scooter. A look of pity, a look of sadness. It seemed like a look as if I had lost something.

I'm not sure how much of their reaction was their perception was theirs and how much of it was my self-consiousness reading into it. It made me feel funny that I was even concerned by it.

When I walk, I have trouble with people running into me. I get cut-off a lot. People race in front of me or around me, and I have trouble stopping on a dime. It usually does not upset me---I know people are in a hurry. Sometimes I wonder why people can't just spare me a second so as not to trip me up.

Now, when I am on the scooter, I am not in the way, but rather the other people are. I just need to learn how to navigate around cube-ville better. I slow around the corners and when I pass openings, but now that I am not at eye level, some people run into me.

One thing I don't like is people hoping on my scooter and going for a ride, as if it is a cute toy. I am suprised that people ask...and some just do it. I need to learn to say "No," a word I am not use to saying.

Taking a trip to the copy room and to the restroom requires much less effort these days. It is proving to be very useful at work.

Is this anything worth dwelling on, a new stage in my life? Or should calm acceptance rule?

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Words and Stones

Last Saturday, 4/8/06, I was sitting on the edge of the deck watching the pups. The kids from the house in back of us were out.

The saw me, one was moving under the bushes to watch me. Since the bushes have been trimmed up, he was in plain sight, but he acted like I did not see him.

The other kids started calling me "retard"---I have been called that before, so that was not new. But then, they started throwing red rocks at me. Lots of rocks landed on out roof; I could here them rolling down. One landed right in back of me. I don't know if it was a direct hit or if it rolled off the roof.

A few weeks ago they were throwing smaller stuff and I asked them to stop. It just egged them on more. Eric had his friend Austin over a few weeks back. Both boys, but mostly Austin from what I could see, had been batting pinecones over into their yard. We told Eric that cannot happen anymore.

We drove around to the other culdesac and Jodie spoke with the dad. I think that will solve it.