A Day in My Life With My SCI

A Day in My Life With My SCI

NOTE FROM THE EDITOR: Katy has unfortunately been going through one health complication after another for the last few months. Last night, she shared this update on her Facebook page. It accurately depicts what it’s like to live with a complicated high-level Spinal Cord Injury, and she has graciously agreed to share it with all of you. Please keep her in your thoughts during this time. Read more

With Wheelchairs, Awkwardness Abounds

With Wheelchairs, Awkwardness Abounds

I’ve always wanted to be liked, but after my injury that became a lot more difficult. The reason being – the wheelchair. No one is comfortable around them, not even dogs. Most people and animals have an off-putting reaction to a wheelchair. Typically it’s pity, fear (expressed by children, old people afraid of the speed of my wheelchair, little dogs), annoyance (on the bus, “Oh no it’s a wheelchair again”) or the one that bothers me the most, awkwardness. Read more

Body Shaming People with Disabilities

Body Shaming

Body shaming is a huge problem in our society and it comes in multiple forms. The fact is that no two people have the same shape, nor were we meant to all look the same. You’re too tall, short, fat, thin, dark, light, or have a physical difference. I don’t know why society feels it is okay to make people think there is something wrong with them. Being a cancer patient I am underweight. I’m also naturally extremely small to begin with. When I’m out with my family and we stop to eat I am very particular because I have to be that way. I have celiac disease and eating any gluten will cause my intestines to swell shut from my stomach. I won’t get into the details, but it’s pretty darn gross and extremely painful. This condition will last for days all from eating one cracker or piece of bread. I’m also a vegan and my food options are limited by choice. There is nothing worse than standing in line and hearing someone behind us snickering about how I’m clearly suffering from an eating disorder and need to eat a cheeseburger. No! I’m sorry that my small stature offends some people. I understand that it has been a problem in society for people who are overweight to feel judged and teased. How is anyone fixing the problem by telling me I have an eating disorder? I’ve often been told that men want meat and not a bone. Men want curves on their women. Hey people, I still have curves, they are only smaller. Read more

Planning for the Unexpected While Going Out

Planning for the Unexpected While Going Out

Emergencies are called emergencies for a reason, because you never know when the are going to pop up. You should have a plan and be prepared to deal with the unexpected. I don’t quite understand why it’s called the unexpected, you know sooner or later it’s happening, but it always seems to have a way of happening at the worst possible moments. Perhaps it should be called the moment of “Oh crap! Dear God please not now” instead. Oh it’s happening, whether you want it to or not, so you might as well take a few minutes at a time and get things in order for them. What’s on my must have list as a parent, wife, and caretaker to get out of the house? Read more

Financial Assistance Programs

Financial Assistance Programs

Having a job not only provides financial income, but a sense of purpose and achievement to our lives. When your disability leaves you unable to work this can cause many problems. There is the lowered level of income vs the same amount of bills your had previously. The loss of health insurance while you now have additional needed medical expenses. How will you support yourself now? There are many government programs to assist people in these situations. Read more

Casual Ableism and Good Will

Casual Ableism and Good Will

There is such a thing as causal ableism. It’s insidious, such as someone offering me up a prayer and leaving me perplexed as to why they are praying for me. It’s someone telling me “If I were you, I’d probably wear sweatpants all day because I could get away with it.” It’s forgetting when a venue or restaurant has stairs. For the most part, I know there’s no ill will, but unless we confront it when it’s encountered, microaggressions and all, we will not get anywhere. Read more

Living’ the Cold-Blooded Quad Life

Living’ the Cold-Blooded Quad Life

When the doctors first told me I was cold-blooded after my accident, I didn’t believe them. “How was that a possible?” I thought. I know one of the worst things in the world happened to me, I broke my neck, but I didn’t transform into an amphibian while I was at it. How can a human be cold-blooded? I was utterly confused. Read more

Save Some Tears for Laughing With

Save Some Tears for Laughing With

I’m talking with two of my friends about sneakers the other day when E points at my Adidas Stan Smiths and asks, “Hey are those comfortable?”

S and I glance at each other. As a paraplegic, my ability to feel anything from chest down is severely impaired. 

I shrug at E. “I’d tell you if I knew.” Read more

When Needing PCAs Make You Feel Less Grown

When Needing PCAs Make You Feel Less Grown

It can be a strange world when you need PCAs. There is a lot of depending on people, their schedules and the stress of everyday things coming up that will without a doubt affect your life. Whether it’s their tire reading low, forgetting to set their alarm because they went on a bender the night before or simply having a kid that is sick, how you get in and out of bed everyday all depends on this stuff. Read more