Life One Handed

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When Disability Becomes Embarrassing – Part 1

Published September 17, 2018 by helentastic67

When Disability Becomes Embarrassing

When Disability Becomes Embarrassing – Part 1

There are many times my disability has been embarrassing or humiliating. However, this is one of those occasions where I was standing in front of a large room of people with a microphone shoved into my hand and all I could think was – “FARRRRKKKK” (you will forgive me for that shortly)

Microphone in hand

Then I was thinking, rather swiftly I might add. “What just happened? Who did that? Where did they go? Help! Now what? How do I get myself out of this situation?”

What just happened

Now, to back up a second, I will put this situation into perspective. I was in Bendigo a few years ago at the ABIAW (Again: Acquired Brain Injury Awareness) week event. I had travelled to Bendigo from Melbourne with my mum, who had driven three and half hours to get to Melbourne, so she could carpool others around also from the ABI Group in Melbourne, I was part of.


So, mum was there also and we shared a room in the hotel we all stayed at.

The first day was a long one, lack of sleep and we went to sessions and heard people speak, we mingled, we ate, we collectively drank bad coffee and the first night we gathered at a dinner to mingle and socialize.

Mingle and Socialize

Now, mum and I retired to our room, like many others for a break before we went to the location for the dinner. Needless to say, my mum and I are both on a different page when it comes to tiredness.


I like to be early to be on time. My mum is much more lenient and we are both very stubborn on this.

By the time we arrived, the people we knew there from our group in Melbourne were spread over two big tables and there were NO SPARE SEATS and no one had thought to save us any.

Crowded table

The guy upon entering, suggested we could join another table to make some friends or sit at another empty table on one side and that table would likely fill up soon enough.

Single Girls Table

I dubbed it the single ‘girls table’. Oh, hell why not?

Here’s where mum and I differ. I was completely okay sitting there out in the bitter lonely cold, but mum wanted to join another table. Soon enough a younger ‘normal’ woman joined us and I enquired if she was single or not.


Sometimes, I can be such a Nona. Nona’s very prone to want to match you up with someone’s son/nephew, whoever.

She claimed to be single (turns out that was a lie), she soon decided to find secure and encourage us to abandon our single girls table and join another table with conveniently three empty seats. This table was front and centre.

Front Row Seats

I had already had a comment about the man facilitating and Master of Ceremonies. While it wasn’t bordering on sexual harassment, it might have been a bit wrong.

Master of Ceremonies

“Let’s give single girl a name, Stacey and let’s call him Fred. Again, Fred gets such a bashing, doesn’t he? So, Stacey spoke to Fred and as she returned to her seat Fred came up to me and…

Deep Breath 2

Wait… Deep breathe,

Deep Breath

He announced to the room there were single ladies at the front table and were there any men looking?

To be continued

To Be Continued



Published September 14, 2018 by helentastic67



OK! While I’m writing this straight after I’ve written my “why I blog post” where I mentioned “Roadkill”. That post jumped the queue and now we have resumed our normal programming.

Back to normal program

To all the single ladies, past, present and future. Roadkill is that term I have for when being single gets monotonous and in order to not being alone or ‘so-alone’ we drop our perceived standards of who is acceptable to date.

Single ladies

I’m not at all suggesting, we only want to date millionaires with boats (sorry yachts) or a castle (it’s never too late) however.


No job, no car, no home, no furniture? (ok that’s a work-around) however.

Our mentality is, we see them by the side of the road with a broken leg or completely flattened and smeared all over the road (Just got ‘dark’ didn’t it?) and the nurturing part of us thinks.

Roadkill 1

“It’s OK, with a little TLC (tender loving care) and a little work, he will scrub up OK.”


You can help them get a job, get a care, etc…

Eventually, they are fixed enough to take them home to meet your mum. You follow? Yeah No!

Helen does not do Roadkill anymore!

No More Roadkill


Published September 10, 2018 by helentastic67



Sometimes with depression it’s good to appreciate the little things to help us get through life, because we can’t all climb mountains, or save the world or have beautiful children to make us feel like we have achieved greatness.

Achieve Greatness

For me it’s all the little things and that I have a decent memory and can use Hellonwheels to share those stories.

Here’s todays example…..

So, before my diagnosis, I worked in admin, you know that generic term for the wench in the office who does all the stuff no one else wants to do etc.

Office wench


At the time of one particular Census I was an admin wench doing the work of a TPO (Training Placement Office) and living with my fun housemate. B!



We decided to sit on the couch to do the Census together, to make it easier.

Here’s the thing, the Census asks lots of repetitive, ridiculous questions and most were harder for me to answer than B.

Census questiions

Job Description. Sure but…..

Describe tasks you do every day? Bam. There you go. That last one, I was very perplexed. My answer went something like this….

Job Description 1

“Answer calls, deal with clients, negotiate and liaise between government agencies, hosts, sponsors, management, email etc.

Job description

B and I looked at each other and we discussed what he should write. We settled on these three words.

“Lifts heavy things.”

Lifts heavy things




Chronic Pain

Published September 7, 2018 by helentastic67

Chronic Pain

Chronic Pain

Remember when this

Webstercare Pack

Remember when our grandparents had these and we thought it was a sign of being old?


OK, I’m going to be blunt

WTF happened?

WTF Happened

Since when was 40 old?

40 Years old

Good Times

Published September 3, 2018 by helentastic67

Good Times

Good Times

So, I’m the first to tell you, my mum and I haven’t always enjoyed our time together which is harsh to say, because she is my biggest, well, most of the time, the only family member to support me. There are times we really don’t hold back in telling each other where to go.

Mum and I

My mum is known to give me her first “whatever” within minutes of arriving and then I inform her exactly how soon she has given me a “whatever”. Mmmmmmm


Today, while out in the car. No Young John, as I had my mum taxi. Out on the road, she asked where we were going? Yet she chooses when she wants directions for how to get there. Everything was fine, she insisted if she needed directions, she would ask.

Mum Taxi

Not much later she was driving into a carpark and she fudged it and I said nothing. Until, she insisted I could have “helped her”.

Parking car

So, I started to commentate “I wouldn’t have done it like that!” “Too deep.”

That really was just the surface. “She laughed”

I had previously explained my younger carers that take me shopping, often feel very self-conscious about their driving, so I feel the need to explain I didn’t drive before my disability and there have been moments when I have been sitting in a car in my own driveway diagonal to the street. And I have been wondering “How the fuck did this happen?”  But all I could do was take a deep breath and pause.

How the fuck did that happen


We arrived at my chiropractors and I shared this experience with my Chiro, who explained it was hard to drive into carparks (parallel carparks) and I replied. “Mum used to drive into carparks when she drove a Ford Falcon station wagon on Chapel Street!” followed be “Game on wench!”

Parellel Parking

She just looked at me and laughed.

On the road again and mum spies some guy crossing the street, she comments “see that guy with the backpack on?” I looked confused? “You mean that guy with a child on his shoulders?” Oh, so it is!” mmmmmmm

Child on shoulders

Have I mentioned my eyesight? And that I’m not allowed to drive? To be fair, I wouldn’t drive with all my other physical deficiencies. It would just be stupid.




Published August 31, 2018 by helentastic67



It’s always odd when I’m thinking to write and cover a particular topic and something really nice or sweet happens, that pushes me over the line to cover a particular topic.

Something nice

I am often faced with people asking me if I need help and if I’m offended when people do because I so rarely take people up on their offer, but would prefer people to offer because I won’t always ask if people don’t think to.

Do you need help

Helen, can I help you get to the toilet?

Helen do you need me to wipe your bum for you?

Wipe your bum

OK, to make a point, one of those (which has never been offered to me) is too much. I hope you can tell which.

People don’t really offer to do much at all for me. Family, friends, anyone, because they assume I’m OK. I mean I’ve dropped my purse in the entrance to a train station and I was going to struggle to pick it up again. The train was pulling into the station and a younger woman hell bent on getting that train just stepped over my purse and I took a moment to compose myself and thankfully someone else stopped to pick it up for me.

Catching train

I missed the train, but seriously, catching the train without my purse was not going to get me far.

Today, while in the city heading to my new Real Estate agent, I had gotten off the tram one stop too far and had further to walk, as I was walking up the street, a guy stopped to ask if I was lost or knew where I was going? I would have managed with some trouble, but I gratefully accepted his assistance.

Are you lost


He quickly did a Google search and told me it was another half a block. He suggested it was another half kilometre and asked if I could make it. I told him I would be fine. He had a bag of bananas and offered me one. It was very nice of him, but I turned him down. But it kinda made my day.

Getting directions


Email Madness

Published August 27, 2018 by helentastic67

Email madness

Email Madness

There are many problems with being part of ABI groups for your social/advocacy/empowering blah de blah, or any disability group maybe.

ABI Groups

I’m really loathe to do the “Reply-all” option on emails. I avoid it at all costs. Because sooner or later one complete fuckwit does “Replay-all” and I get an email saying this – “That’s such a cool font. What is it?”


And I have to take a deep breath when I’m thinking “Why do I need to know that? C’mon!”

Sometimes, these are the problems that seem first world problems, but for me with my high functioning ABI, I can’t help it.

First world problem

Delete, move on.

Delete and Move on

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