Because I have such a high level injury, I am unable to move anything below the C1/C2 level. This is why I require a ventilator for breathing and 24 hr nursing care to assist me with my needs. Besides the obvious health and safety implications, having an injury this high also creates a few social obstacles that I have yet to figure out. Read more
The word disability might mean something different depending on who you ask. To me, I consider myself as having a disability but I’m not disabled. Although I have limitations due to my injury, I have abilities as well. I have the ability to speak my mind; the ability to choose the way I want to live my life. I have the ability to access whatever means it takes to show people that “I am me” despite my disability. It doesn’t define who I am as a person or individual. Read more
Throughout life you will learn
that sorrow will not remain.
You will see that it is
like a butterfly emerging
from its cocoon to make way
for greater things.
When a caterpillar spins a chrysalis, does it know its life is going to change and that it’s going to turn into a beautiful butterfly? When a baby is born, does it know the path that it’s going to live and the life-changing moments that may occur? Change happens every day whether it is good or bad. People die, give birth, change jobs, graduate school, etc. Some changes are small while others are life-changing. Like an accident that changes you from an active teen to being paralyzed and in a wheelchair. Read more
Dating with a Disability
“For my interpersonal communication class I have to write a personal ad for myself. I’ve never done one before, so I’ve been searching the Internet to see what other people have written. I have to say, I found some interesting people out there. I’m seriously considering going on one of those dating websites. Not that I’m really looking for anyone right now, but it would be kind of interesting to see how it works. I’ve heard of many people meeting on the Internet and actually getting married.
The only thing I’m worried about is if no one responds or tries to contact me. I mean, there aren’t many people who would actually seek out a quadriplegic on a ventilator. The statistics for me finding someone who can see past my disability are low. This is one of the things I struggle with the most. The future and what it holds. I’m trying to be optimistic though. I don’t really tell a lot of people this, but it’s easy to talk to a computer because it doesn’t talk back. It’s hard to explain these feelings to other people. I’m sure there are other quadriplegics or people with disabilities who feel the same way.”
I have 24/7 nursing care because of my trach and ventilator. If my injury was any lower, I wouldn’t have nurses. Many times I’m glad that I’m on the ventilator so that I can have nurses to do all the care that comes along with being a quadriplegic. I don’t think I would be as healthy or come as far as I have without nurses. On the downside, I’m never alone. This is one thing that I struggle with. Even if I’m alone in my room, there is always someone within hearing distance of me in case something happens. Read more
Having an SCI and being on a ventilator can present challenges for maintaining body temperature through extreme temperature changes. Because of my injury, I’m unable to feel if I’m cold or hot. The only way I know is by using a thermometer, often when it’s too late. Also, the temperature in the air can be very hard on my lungs because I’m on a ventilator. Read more
Whether big or small, people face challenges everyday. These challenges can become roadblocks: some they can easily step over, some they can navigate around, and others are just too high to climb on their own. Ever since I started writing about my life, my goal was to show people that no matter what “roadblock” they may be facing, there’s always a way to get past it, even if you have to go straight through it head-on. Read more
No matter what situation you’re in, relationships are very important whether it be a caregiver, friend, family member, significant other etc. It always feels good to have that one person or group of people that you can count on to be there for you no matter what and talk to you about anything. I’d like to focus this blog on my past and present experiences dating with a disability. Read more
Yeah it’s hard…
Sometimes I find myself drifting away, staring at the wall, thinking of things that I know I have no control over and that I cannot change. It’s difficult to be in a position where you’re so vulnerable to others and in which your privacy is gone; where the only place that feels safe and comfortable is inside yourself. I have trouble sometimes dealing with this whole situation. There are times where all I do is direct and tell people what to do. In fact that’s my life. I didn’t sign up to be a manager of others starting at 16 years old. Sometimes trying my best doesn’t seem good enough to me. I think I’m my own worst critic. Read more
Something that I wonder is what others would do if they were in my situation. Everyone deals with situations and handles things differently. For those of you who have not gone through this ordeal, how would you react to all of the sudden waking up and finding out you were paralyzed? What sort of things would go through your mind? How would you handle it? Read more