Yesterday I tweeted “Imagine we’re sitting around, chatting. What might you want to ask me?”
Four people welcomed the invitation:
John Foliot asked, “Can you name one thing that often makes you want to “give up”, and one thing that inspires you to “push on”?”
Encounters with people (and systems) who do not see beyond my disability to see my abilities and the real me inside – and there’s still many of them out there – are extremely discouraging and devaluing. I am left feeling what’s the point of trying when my capabilities aren’t validated, aren’t valued.
But then I reconnect with that part deep within myself that doesn’t give up, that keeps going, no matter what. That reconnection might be sparked by listening to one of “my” songs, witnessing someone else struggle and thinking “if they can do that, then I can get through this”, or writing a cathartic blog post and then getting on with it.
Holly Salsman enquired, “What would you say your biggest challenge has been, and your biggest accomplishment?”
Communicating verbally with those unfamiliar with Glenda-ish has always been, and remains, a challenge. A high school counsellor once asked if I would prefer to walk or to talk. My response was immediate: talk. People are so quick to judge one’s cognitive abilities based on her ability to speak; if they don’t understand her speech, they tend to discount her other abilities. I am constantly proving that I am not hearing or cognitively impaired; that I understand and I am capable. The iPad has helped enormously, in some situations, but I am finding it is not the magic bullet every time. Face-to-face communication will likely remain an ongoing challenge through my entire lifetime. Thank goodness for blogging and tweeting!
To date, my biggest accomplishment has been writing and then self-publishing my autobiography I’ll Do It Myself – a project thirty years in the dreaming, researching, planning, learning and creating. Opening the first box and seeing my baby for the first time was such an emotional experience!
However, I sense my ultimate accomplishment is still yet to come. Stay tuned.
The Badass Project queried, “You clearly can do it yourself, but what or who could you not do it without?”
I am extremely fortunate to be surrounded by encouraging, wise, giving, creative people who I can call on when working on a project or when struggling to figure out something. With the list lengthy, the top spot goes to my wonderfully supportive and patient husband Darrell Hyatt. Without him, I wouldn’t be where I am today.
(By the way, I love the mission of The Badass Project! Check it out.)
Karen Putz asked, “What’s on your bucket list?”
Great question. One that made me stop to think. Here’s what comes to mind initially:
- Do the zipline trek at Whistler
- Try sit-skiing
- Climb the stairs at Philadelphia Museum of Art with the spirit of Rocky Balboa
- Transverse the Sydney Bridge in Australia
- Write another book or two
- Get off of social assistance once and for all (in the good way)
No doubt this list will grow with more time and more thought.
Your turn: What would you like to ask? Your question might become fodder for a future post.If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a cafe mocha. Thanks kindly.