Thursday, January 28, 2016

CP IS IT A BLESSING OR A CURSE?

I received an email from the Cerebral Palsy Foundation.   http://yourcpf.org/?_ga=1.179573420.927339233.1449772670  In conjunction with their "Just Say Hi" Campaign, which shows videos of people with CP as well as non disabled people telling the best ways to start a conversation with someone who has a disability.(For me the best way to start a conversation is to say hi. Then, tell me what your favorite book, classic television show or Cher song is.) They also wanted  to know how Cerebral Palsy impacts your life. There was a blank space on the submission form for my story, but I felt it was a good blog topic. I hope no one at the CPF will mind.

I have Spastic Cerebral Palsy. All  four of my limbs are affected.I have been given the label of Severely Disabled. When I was little friends were able to walk with crutches. They tried to teach me how to walk with crutches, but because I didn't have balance, if the therapist lot go of me I would fall. I need assistance with just about everything. And, because, many people with Cerebral Palsy are mentally challenged as well, I am constantly having to prove to others that I have a good mind and make my own decisions. All of this sucks. 

Some days I deal with my limitations better than others. But there is one thing that is the most difficult for me to deal with. Not being able to take myself to the bathroom. That is the worst part of having CP for me. It limits what I can do. Sometimes it takes forever for someone to come and help me/ It is so frustrating. There are some days when having CP is exhausting both physically and emotionally.

I am thankful that even though I have CP, God gave me a good mind. I  can think and put my thoughts and ideas in this blog and share them with you.

I think having CP has made me more sensitive to the struggles others may be having. I accept peoples differences. We can learn something new everyday from someone else. We just have to listen.

People have told me how much I inspire them. That makes me feel uncomfortable. I am not doing anything that unique or special. I am just living my life.  Just like all of you.

Having CP and living in a facility has made me appreciate the assistance I receive  from the staff. I hope I am more humble. I took the help I received, when I lived in my house,  for granted.  I take nothing for granted now. And, I never forget to say thank you to anyone helping me.

My CP is neither a blessing or a curse. It is my disability.I continue to deal with it and learn new things from it everyday.













Wednesday, January 20, 2016

COLORFY

When I was little I couldn't draw. I had difficulty coloring too. I guess you  could say my not being able to stay inside the lines meant that I was more creative than the other kids in my class, but  i was six years old, all I cared about was being to do what the other kids in  my class were doing. 

All I could do was draw circles and scribble. The teacher wanted us to draw and paint. How could I do that? I was having enough difficulty trying to print name. When I did try to draw the other children laughed at my efforts.

I would beg my mother to teach me to draw, but she couldn't draw either. My grandmother showed me how to draw a house, grass, the sky, trees, flowers and some stick figures.  Finally, I could draw pictures like everyone my class!

When  I began using an electric typewriter I learned to draw a Christmas Tree with it. An older student, who typed with a headpiece that had a pencil sticking out of it, could draw more elaborate pictures with the typewriter than I could. I was happy with the Christmas Card I made for my parents  My Christmas Tree was on the front of it. 

I am always looking for new Kindle Apps. When I heard about an app called  Colorfy that allows you to color pictures on your Kindle, I knew I had to check it out. I love using  this app.It lets me put different color combinations together to create beautiful designs. I can finally stay inside the lines.

Coloring.  it is such a simple thing. As a child coloring was not fun for me. But, as an adult, thanks to Colorfy, I am leaning how much fun coloring can be.




Wednesday, January 13, 2016

THE COOL TABLE

I was not mainstreamed. As you know, I attended the same school from the age of six to nineteen. The only thing that my high school had in common with other high schools was that we had a prom one year. But, thanks to the magic of television, I have some idea what it's like to attend high school with students who are not disabled.

I know about the cliques. The Jocks. The Geeks. The Popular Girls.. And, there had to be a Cool Table where all the really together people sat.The ones who dressed well and looked as though they had their act together all the time, even when didn't. 

I would have been part of another clique. The Nerds. I was called Virgin Ears because i didn't use profanity. The girls in my class thought I was strange because I was not boy crazy.  I didn't fit in anywhere.  The fact that all of us were disabled didn't matter. In the seventies, that saying about kids being cruel, applied to kids with disabilities as well. At least, in  my high school anyway..

Fast forward to the present. There is one main dining room here.  Residents from a smaller dining room have moved to the main one. I had been eating at the same table with  the same resident for a number of months. We were told we would have move because our table was needed for the other residents. 

After trying several tables and not feeling comfortable, I went to a table with two residents close my age .My former table mate was sitting at the table too. I had been waiting meet the other residents for a while. I thought we would have things in common and we do, we like to watch movies. 

I was happy. We do get along well, but I don't like the fact that the one resident makes fun of my former table mate.  They call them  names and say how annoying they are. 

It's true that my former table is not the happiest person. Neither am I. I guess that's why I understand their behavior. They do have issues,, but everyone here does. The person  doesn't know they are  being talked about. it bothers me that another adult would act that way. I have been called names since I have been here too. I have been talked about by other residents. The old feelings from high school resurfaced. They didn't stay with me long, but,I must admit, It hurt for a while.

I enjoy the meal conservation most of the time. The other two residents are funny and we talk about movies. I hope someday they will learn to be  a little more understanding of another resident. We don't know what issues they may be going through.

Then our table will really be The Cool Table.




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