Hell on Wheels

All posts tagged Hell on Wheels

Busy

Published October 18, 2021 by helentastic67

Busy


I have never known how to not be busy. I’ve always been busy. When I was 16 years old (yes! back when there were dinosaurs!). In the 1980’s, I was a full-time high school student, I worked part time as a checkout chick. I was doing hours of art folio preparation to get into college, I was a live-in babysitter to baby sister and I definitely didn’t have time for a social life or boyfriend. I did the household ironing and more than my share of the housework.

All while planning to be a poor art student, didn’t do a 4,000-word assignment until my first year of tertiary. I was still living at home then and it was all hand written. No computers, so many drafts, then only the battle of whiteout back then. You kids don’t know how good you have it.

So, it shouldn’t be a surprise that when I moved to Melbourne to be a poor art student when I was nineteen, that while being a full-time student, I transferred my supermarket job so I was working part time and being 100% responsible for my shopping and cooking. I introduced a little social outing in the form of going to clubs. I met one woman at college that went to a big commercial club very close to me. In simple terms, it was a very big wog club that was like a meat market. Huge dance floor in the middle of the room, upstairs, you spent much time going for a walk around the perimeter with a friend. As you travelled around a line forward and you just kept to the left. To your right was a line of people going the other way. As people passed on your right A guy’s face would loom into you to go for a kiss. Brushing them aside, all of a sudden, they would be pulled away by their girlfriend who had them by the hand and asking why they seemed to be holding them up. This is not why I stopped going to this kind if club.

The first few years I studied in Melbourne (two years actually) and I would go home long weekends and maybe a week of term break.

At Christmas, I’d transfer my supermarket job back to the country and also pick up seasonal work in the farm of blueberry packing. The last season I did some picking too, but while very stressful, packing paid better.

But to take a break from study and be at home in the country over Christmas meant I was literally working from 6am until 9pm with only a few hours off in the middle. Not even after college, I picked up some work in retail and clubs, which I literally set the hours according to what I considered it required to ‘get the job done’. So, my weeks, day and night were full.

I guess I’m saying life before my disability was always hectic, maybe why little symptoms I could later contribute to my AVM diagnosis went unchecked. So busy, my life has always been busy and I’m sure it’s not the last time I will cover this topic, or topics.




Magnificent – Continues

Published October 11, 2021 by helentastic67

Magnificent – Continues

Later that night, I discussed my legendary stopping traffic in Burgundy St Heidelberg and my mum was all like “Omg! You could have been killed!”

Seriously, now she cares, I’m kidding, she cares. 

I mentioned again the above to my Heidelberg taxi driver Sean (is his real name!) and his reply that was simply put “Cabbies like pro-active clients!”

Nailed it!

I like to imagine I’m aware of my surroundings enough to not put myself in danger. I also like to imagine (call me crazy!) that nobody has enough insurance to hit someone with a disability.

And if that Gold Merc driver had been any danger I wonder if he would have appreciated a walking stick imprint in his boot?

I knew he would have been all “I’ll sue you!”

I would have been all nice like “See you in court!”

I wonder if the judge would have been empathetic. 

So, yes! I’ve thought it all through.

Magnificent

Published October 4, 2021 by helentastic67

Magnificent

I have to say, today was magnificent! Wait!

I went to my first of two appointments today in Heidelberg. I have made it a habit to walk to a local take-away shop to pick up a vegetable pide and I book a taxi from there to scoop me up and get me home. 

Today none of my regular taxi drivers could fit me in so, I rang for one. What’s the damn address? I get to tell my regular guys simply ‘the take away place’ and they manage to get a park across the street or call me to tell me they are around the corner. I waited.

I noted there were no free parking spaces for a taxi to pull in. It’s a very busy shopping strip where traffic is non-stop. Car spaces open up and are taken again very quickly. Some spaces become available. I message to see where my taxi was and had the option to speak to my driver that had accepted my booking. I spoke to him and told him I would step into an empty carpark and he could pull in.

I stepped into the back of three empty car spots, in a row of cars, a car went to back into where I was. I shook my head and moved towards the passenger window. I briefly explained my dilemma. 

“Taxi coming to pick me up. He would need to pull in.”

This was fine. He pulled into the middle carpark and as he was getting out of the driver’s side (on the roadside not curb-side), another car also considered parking where I was standing. I stood firm. I looked through the car’s rear window. I could not make eye contact. I should point out; I should be wearing a face mask as Covid is a thing.

I stood firm, other cars were lined up wondering what was happening. I looked to the driver trying to steal my car spot. He was driving a vintage gold Merc.

Say it with me now, three things wrong with that sentence. Ok, two. Vintage is ok.

I realized the driver was an older (he was old!) Greek man, I shook my head, “no!” at him. I pointed to the Audi in the road, waiting for this situation to be resolved. I did my default stone face. “I’m not giving in!” and shook my head again. I asked the man who had parked by now if he could tell the old Greek man why I was not moving. He explained to me that he could not see me.

How could he not? I am dressed in the standard uniform that is Melbourne. BLACK & BLACK & BLACK, TODAY. It’s cold, the end of summer but finally we have some blue sky. 

Quite frankly, just happy it’s not 40 degrees in the shade as it was a week ago, because I could not wear black.

So, where was I?

The Greek man in his vintage gold Merc drove away. I had indicated again to the Audi waiting for traffic to be resolved and traffic continued to move. The man and his wife got out of their car that they had picked and the husband told me the old Greek man had been none too pleased. I smiled and said I had noticed he was rather grumpy.

My taxi driver pulled in and I unloaded all my handful of yeah, bag, walking stick and things. And the day went on.

There are many times I stand my ground as a not young, hot and sexy something-something woman but I will always stand up to people like my disability didn’t happen because there are certain things I don’t stand for.

I am magnificent!

Normal Friends

Published September 27, 2021 by helentastic67

Normal Friends

In my earlier years of having case management, I mentioned as one of my goals that I wanted some normal friends and contact with the outside world that didn’t constantly throw me in with people with brain injuries or depression/mental health, etc.

I mentioned it specifically like this as my previous C.M. had a tendency to favour the ‘Clubhouse’ their organization ran. I would joke that they literally did a drive-by, push the door open and shove you out! Exclaiming “Have fun!”

My monthly meetings with my C.M. went on and while trying to maintain my independence, find funding for the different things, refer me to O. T’s and all the ‘other’, more attainable goals finding ‘normal’ friends was always pushed to the side for more important and pressing things.

This new potential friend was occasionally mentioned to me and because I insisted on more details, I was assured she was witty and smart. I confess, I don’t have much time for slow, dim-witted people. 

What? My brain doesn’t have much time for. C’mon! Hurry the fuck up! I can’t help it. My brain is busy and Stephen Hawking I am not. But, over time, I was volunteered more and more info about this new potential friend. I had not been terribly keen as she was living across town. I don’t have the energy to get to the people I already know and love to go across town.

Are your spidey senses going off yet?

Mine have been from day one. I should point out, C.M. works like this. I self-referred. They come see you or vice versa, you sign contract, they get paid.

Everything I said I wanted and needed, which they said they could do, they fuck all did.

They did the easy things.  They only met with me as often as I insisted because I pestered them and because I’m fun and cool and amusing. Imagine, if someone isn’t cool or fun or can’t implement Pester Power?

That part of me is still in that childlike era, I do exceptionally well at Pester Power. So C.M. tried to shake me loose. “Hey? We haven’t done all the things yet!”

You realise, you sign that contract, they get paid and if you don’t keep on them, they can get away with never seeing you again.

So, the C.M. let slip one day, could I help the client with her rostering of carers? She couldn’t manage her roster, didn’t return calls, couldn’t schedule, etc. Could I help her with that?

So, she wanted me to do her job now?

People often don’t even realise I have a disability. Well, several really. So, they see me upright and walking and talking and smiling until one day I make a BOLD statement and people are shocked into a different idea of Helen’s normal.

Who Am I?

Published September 13, 2021 by helentastic67

Who am I?

My name is Helen, I started blogging in 2015. Since then, I’ve written over 600+ blog posts and acquired over 280 followers all around the world.

I’ve really let my blog speak for itself and not really marketed myself in any commercial way to gain a larger following.

Pre-Covid I was sharing three posts a week. Hellonwheels, is me doing brain injury differently. I’ve had my brain injury for over 48 years, only learning I even had my Arterial Venous Malformation (AVM) at aged 34 when I was really stressed, as a result of workplace bullying. After diagnosis and treatment, I have been left with stroke like symptoms.

It’s not easy being a high-functioning Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) and it’s even harder to explain. I have a good memory, a love for music and food – things some people with brain injuries can’t enjoy.

I’m a single-barren spinster, often including further descriptions, straight and fucking fussy!

I have strong opinions, which may or may not appeal to everyone. This is why I include stories of my past, little moments of life, foodie posts and beautiful things from nature. 

Life is short and often few moments or opportunities go past, so I try to share the ones that I have.

I hope you will take a moment to look up Like, Share and Follow. 

Go With God

Published September 6, 2021 by helentastic67

Go With God        

There is a weird thing in disability circles, people join groups to find their tribe. You know, other people like themselves.

There is this thing about power in numbers, etc. But I wouldn’t want to be in a room with a heap of people with depression. What do they call that?

A goth club?

Never mind!

Those miserable looking goth kids, from the 90’s? Happiest kids you will have ever met. But, some people with disabilities or brain injury have a tendency to compete. No, really!

Oh, you think that’s bad?! I have this!

In reality, it all sucks. People will imagine their experience is something like what you can imagine or worse than you experience. I like to remind people there is always someone worse.

A guy was in a coma for I don’t know how long. No idea the cause of his ABI or how long he’d had it or anything. However, he seemed very happy and smiley despite his lack of ability to keep his sentences on track or contribute in a big way.

In his coma he was kept company by the radio. I do know, he came out of his coma to a song on the radio, “Stairway To Heaven” by Led Zeppelin.

He would smile fondly…

Did they not think that was wrong?

Did they want him to wake up, or Go to God?

Community

Published August 9, 2021 by helentastic67

Community

So, one of the amazing things about having carers is they bring with them stories and a sense of community. They share stories about their friends and other clients.

One of my carers has been dipping her foot back into dating and she quoted some male online dating guru, by stating, “women need to get rid of their lists!”

I’m sorry (a little defensive) what? Well, yeah that’s probably right.

So, she gave me her short list of three.

1. Nice person

2. Got their shit together

3. Nice d**k! (Hint, that word is not duck!)

I think this is fair. It’s three rather concise, necessary requirements.

So, sometimes I get lucky with the right kind of sass and I get to share. You’re welcome.

The Ex

Published August 2, 2021 by helentastic67

The Ex

There are days I have plenty of sad topics to cover but I like to find a positive from a negative. Take my ex-boyfriend. No really, take him!

I will liken him to Wentworth Miller (actor).  Are you familiar with him?  I’ll help, Prison Break.  Full body tattoos, yeah!!!! Deep breath and Gay. Yep, ladies can’t have him. He’s into guys, which is fine. I used to have a picture of him on a pinboard. C’mon, we all did. It’s nice to dream.

But gay?  Gay!  We’re fine. The other team scores another one but my ex, I digress, poster on my pinboard and my stepdaughter (yeah, it was brief, at the time I had a step-daughter.)

She asked her dad if the photo was of him?  He looked at me and I smiled a little and shook my head. Now, I thought we had been together about four years, but apparently, we had not been. I guess because he sent mixed messages. I like provincial furniture and decorations. He suggested if I could save some money, we could have a trip to France.

Me, now?  So, I can have another fucking holiday to the most romantic place in the world with a so-called boyfriend who didn’t have the same ideas for our relationship that I did.  FUCK NO!  Thank you.

A Little Variety

Published July 26, 2021 by helentastic67

A Little Variety

Because we all need a bit if variety, and because sometimes we need a little light and shade. Do you remember jokes from your childhood that seem to have been lost?

This is maybe the first joke I remember as a kid in the 70’s in Australia. You are welcome.

There are two kids playing out in the street. Called Shut-Up and Trouble. They got separated and a policeman found one of them and asked him.

“What’s your name son?”

“Shut-Up!”

The policeman, thinking the kid was giving him some attitude repeated, “What’s your name son?”

“Shut-Up!”

The policeman, “You looking for trouble?”

Mmmmm…. Good times.

It’s a clean joke though, you have to admit it. I have not thought about this joke in years.

High Density Living

Published July 19, 2021 by helentastic67
Melbourne city, apartments, high density areas.

High Density Living

These days high density living in inner city Melbourne has become the norm just like everywhere else.

There are all kinds of short cuts developers take to get more levels in but at a cost to quality.  I overhead a story recently while getting a treatment in Collingwood at my free clinic.

A patient (or client) in the next cubicle stated he had a friend who had paid $750,000 for an apartment in that area and when he heard the kettle in the kitchen next door to his place going off, he knew it was time to move further out.  He’s lucky it was just the kettle.

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