Smile

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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?

If I Go Down, So Do You

Published April 8, 2019 by helentastic67

If I go down

If I Go Down – So Are You, Awkward

There are some days when I’m out and about, where so help me God. Sometimes I think people are going out of their way to get in mine. I get off a tram where I have to take a huge step down and before I get to the curb (2.5 metres away) someone has gotten off the same tram, come around on my left side, then cut right in front of me.

Get in my way

Just a friendly reminder, my worst eyesight is my peripheral on my left side, so I don’t see them coming, but I mean WHY??? Some days it’s every moment I’m out of the house. The last two sets of lights I cross to get from the tram stop to my home, guaranteed people will move into my path to get where they have to be.

Cross my path

One of these days Alice, one of these days, someone’s going to knock me over and I always say “If I go down, you go down with me!” I have been known to say this to kids running around the shopping centre when I’m there.

One of these days, Alice

Fucking kids and these are the ones old enough to know better, I give them my grumpy European stare. My Nona would be proud.

Grumpy Nonna Look

There are also times when I go to get off the tram or train, when I get up early so I can get my left leg to wake up. Rearrange my bag so I don’t have it get in my way and there is usually an awkward moment where another is trying for the door also and they are okay for me to go first. I always let them go first, stating they will be quicker and if I think they can take it, I also tell them, if I fall, I want something soft to land on.

Fall off Tram

If I’m luck to get a startled look from them, I know they heard me and I give them a little smile sometimes, it’s the little things.

Little Smile

Smart Arse

Published February 5, 2018 by helentastic67

Smart arse

Smart Arse

People who have known me over the past 10+ years, they have commented on my sharp wit and that I’ve got the quickest wit of anyone she knows.

Sharp wit

Hello! Compliment. Right here…

There are people who treat me like I’m an idiot because I have a brain injury. There are many ways people comment on my disability. One particular consistent ‘opening’ is – “You look like you’ve been through the wars!” Which I received most recently today. I was a little wet from having to walk a short distance in the rain. So everything else is my base-line already and I didn’t feel the need to comment.

Through the wars

First time ever I came up with the best response, but not on the spot.

So, here’s how I will respond to that line in the future.

“Not a war, a battle! I won!

I won

Yeah! This is what winning looks like and then imagine what loosing would have looked like.”

I generally follow comments like this with a sharp look and a smile. So they know I do mean it, but that I’ve also accepted it.

Smile

Another older lady sat in the waiting room to wait for her taxi. She also had a walking stick, now she commented to me; “That’s the thing with stroke, it takes your independence!” I’m sure I’ve encountered this woman before, her name is also Helen.

Independence

I respond swiftly with ‘Ah, but it doesn’t take our sense of humour.’

I think I even put a little Scottish brogue on it in the tone of “But they will never take our freedom.”

Sense of Humour

Hidden Pain

Published January 12, 2018 by helentastic67

Hidden Pain 1

Hidden Pain

Some people are really quite oblivious to the strain and pain on my body when I’m out and about because despite my walking stick and my left arm being in a sling (collar and cuff) and that I’m out of the house, it’s presumed I’m always wandering around with a smile on my face.

Walking stick and sling

In reality, sleep or lack thereof means my left leg works even less than “I make It” and the eyesight in my left eye is worse than people would realise.

Often what I carry and how it affects my mobility even more.

In my own backyard, even moving a few small terracotta pots around means my left hip hurts! WTF! I don’t even use my left side to do anything, so I’ve asked an OT/Physio what that is all about and she had no words of wisdom for me.

Small Terracotta Pots

Yesterday, I went to the city, I travel by car to a train station closer to the city, then a train from there.

When I’m out and about my ‘handbag’ (hate the term) is a large street-wear bag with the clash on it. (I just like the image) the strap on the bag hangs from my left shoulder and the bag sits on my right hip and gluts as in Gluteus Maximus. If I buy something when I’m out, it must fit in that bag. If I can’t carry it, I can’t buy it…

But yesterday, I also had to transport a delivery of Ginger Kisses. I have a cool bag, big enough for six cans (so Australian for those serious drinkers; not me, other people) and in it were 2 large ice blocks (heavy) and 30 Ginger Kisses (cool).

Ginger Kisses

I got out of the car at the train station carrying the walking stick and the cool bag and walked the twenty metres to the train platform without the aid of the stick.

I missed the train by “that much”. A train station staff member told me I’d missed it. No shit Sherlock! Because he hadn’t held it for me for two seconds despite my efforts.

Missed Train

So, I asked him to help me put the cool bag on better. I gave him both the stick and the cool bag. I eased the two loops of the collar and cuff down over my hand and proceeded to have him put the handle of the bag on my arm up under my elbow. The collar and cuff goes back on and keeps the bag from slipping down.

The weight of the bag hangs by my side and doesn’t obstruct the forward motion of my left leg.

On the train to the city I often find myself eating my breakfast. Vegemite and cheese on toasted bread. Good breakfast for on the go, not great every day.

Cheese and Vegemite

I got to the city, scooped up my coffee in my keep cup in Degraves Street and got to the AGM for the Self Advocacy group I’m part of. There was only one table at the front that four people were to sit at in a ‘panel formation’.

Degraves St

I put my bags down and looked around. No-one! So, I dragged a table over. At which point my left hip is hurting. Seriously, don’t know what it’s complaining about when it does nothing.

Had the meeting.

Did some serious walking.

More serious walking.

Walking

More serious walking.

It’s now been several weeks since I started this post. I think I got lost in the details. Relevant details, but today I was off to the city again with that damn cool bag.

Cooler bags

I realised how the added weight changes how I move and balance and the impact on just walking by the end of the day…

Hidden Pain

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