Posted in Uncategorized

Yes, I should be asleep

It’s a bit after 4 in the morning. About 2 hours ago my daughter and son along with me got back from what was supposed to be a spectacular meteor shower. They each saw a couple. Me? I would be lying if I said yes. But, it was ok. I liked being on an adventure, I tried. I came home, read some Facebook about the horrible white nationalists actions in Virginia, got marginally drawn into some difficult to read comments. Then I decided to change gears and watched a TED Talk about choosing our reactions.

Well, I seriously needed to listen and feel her words. The quote shown on the featured photo was from the talk–(paraphrasing) people can take from us but we are only left with one option–how we choose to respond. Powerful. I am going to go to sleep and process it, many times, I believe.

I have been choosing some pretty crappy responses. People have paid me back. Oftentimes, it is very much different than my fantasies.

Posted in Uncategorized

My life as a cat,….

and I hate cats. Hmm, does that mean that I hate my life? In a short answer, yes, a part of it.

Cats are said to have 9 lives. Humans aren’t usually that lucky, well, at least we don’t know for sure. I know, though, that I have been give more than enough reasons to wake up and turn my life around, but don’t. It is like I keep challenging my reality, saying that it ‘can’t be worse than this’. Oh, yes it can.

How many ‘lives’ have I been given as a ‘do over’?

Number 1: my mom said often of her ‘difficult delivery’ and the doctor’s work on me after it.

Number 2: after recently learning to crawl I was practicing the skill and found a fairly large screw on the floor which I ended up choking on. I was turning colors when they found me, turning me upside-down, beating on my back to dislodge it.

Number 3: for a while, my infant daughter, husband and I lived with his mom. My father-in-law had recently been released from prison. He and mom-in-law were not married anymore but he stopped by frequently, not in a good way. My husband was at work, he was a cook and worked late. My daughter and I were in bed, asleep. I woke up with a gun to my head and him saying that he would kill me if she didn’t have sex with him. I am assuming she did. I was petrified. My husband’s response? He was just trying to make a point.

Number 4: still in the mind boggling marriage. We were fighting literally days after our 2nd daughter was born. About what? Who knows. It could have been about the weather, food, the baby crying, his mom wanting us to do something for her–now, us needing to buy something, really, who know. I have no recollection of the fight, just the results which was him strangling me and me falling to the floor on top of the newborn. I forgot to say that I was holding her. He picked up our one year old and left, on his motorcycle, I have no idea how. A neighbor saw him and came in because they knew that I would not have allowed him to take her like that. They were able to revive me. No, I didn’t call the police. Don’t ask me why, the answer is confusing to anyone who has not experienced domestic violence.

Number 5: weird diagnosis of Pseudomyxoma Peritonea, appendix cancer. One in 2 million people, yay me. At that time, there were only 7 or 8 doctors in the country who were considered specialists, of course none locally. Many trips to Texas, MD Anderson and it appears all is fine. Well, except for the bankruptcy that resulted from twice a year appointments which were not covered by my insurance.

Number 6: kayaking with my son on a new river. We went around a bend, got caught in some aggressive Rapids and flipped. I got hung up in the roots of a tree in the water and couldn’t disengage. Eventually I was able to push myself down enough and got too the surface.

Number 7: There is no number 7, except figuratively. My life that I worked diligently to create has died with my increasing disability. No longer can I stand in front of audiences to speak. No longer can I carry things for a clever display. No longer can I work 10 hour days going from one thing to another. Hell, no longer can I drive.

So, this is my list of second chances. One would think that I recognize the gift that I have been given. But, I have not. This is the reason for the blog.

Yes, I hate cats. I don’t have to hate me. And, yes, I still have two more chances.

Can I learn how to perform with 3 strings?

Posted in Uncategorized

I’m hung up on F words

All of my missing string come down to one thing: fear. Fear of not:

  • Walking 
  • Stand up from ANYTHING 
  • Working
  • Going broke
  • Crowds
  • Being alone
  • Running into people I used to know 
  • Meeting new people 

So, where do all of these fears get me? Tied in knots, I get no where. I am at a loss for solutions. What I am trying are several things. 

First, I am talking to my doctor on Wednesday. I am wondering if, the physical things–falling, difficulty in standing–could be caused by something with my inner ear. I have tinnitus really bad. Perhaps, the conditionsare intertwined. I have also began attending, and DOING it, an older adults exercise program at the YMCA. Maybe the issue is that my core is weak because of the MS, Lymphedema and I am just not active anymore. The lack of activity is because I was so sick last year, my depression and, taking me back to the purpose of this post, am afraid of being seen.  I hate using the wheelchair. That is purely a mental thing. No one has responded negatively. 

Learning to just be, confidently is the prescription for my health. Learning to trust may be hard but definitely worth the payoff. 

Photo credit: blog.socialitysquared.com

Posted in Uncategorized

Shhhh….

We should both be sleeping. But, I have to brag. For the first time since April 15th,  2016 I slept at least a part of the night IN A BED! And, tonight is the first time since February, 2016 that I was able to get up completely independently. 

I feel accomplished. But still tired. So good night. I GOT UP BY MYSELF!!!!!

Posted in Uncategorized

WTF

Second usage of the ‘f’ word in the same week. And, no, it is not one of the ages shone above. 

Why do I resist challenges, self created challenges, so aggressively? I just don’t understand. Me.

I challenged myself to create something, everyday, for a month. I successfully did it for….one day. One. Miserable. Day.  

I even tried to figure out a way to say that I did do it, just didn’t post about it or a picture of the creation. Why couldn’t I do that, you know, lie? Because I did nothing yesterday except help my assistant tidy up the shelf that holds my clothes and organize my bedside table. Creative? Not by any stretch of the imagination. 

So, I sit here today and contemplate: start over or double down? I am choosing doubling today. I will be back a bit later to share.

BUT, I did start my give-away challenge. I gave a worry stone to Terry.  So, I am on track for that. Lol, on track. That seems to be the strangest thing to be proud of. 

Posted in Uncategorized

Enough 

is enough. I believe that I am on the 10th+ post. Posts that are only reiterating all the ‘can’t’s’ in my world right now. But, is that what I want to see, feel, be? All the ‘I cant’t’s’? Is that what I think anyone would like to follow? And, if they do need to read about the demise of D. Mize then theyneed to go on down another road.  Because I have can’t’s.

I can’t:

  • Drive
  • Work full-time 
  • Climb stairs 
  • Walk without the rollator 
  • ……..

This list could go on and on. 

But, what CAN I do? 

I am an advocate for social services. I know resources. I know people. I have people reaching out to me for help and information concerning intimate partner violence, pretty frequently. Those things fill up a lot of good things. 

But, is my only value found in advocacy? I seriously hope not! I have given myself a challenge. Well, two challenges. First, I am going to create something, everyday. It doesn’t matter what it is as long as I do something. Today my creation is: 

I created this as a beginning of the logo for a page that I run called Peacework Consulting. The mission of the page is creating a resource for communities to come together and address prevention of intimate partner violence at the macro level.  All to often services funded to address the problem rely on the victim as the solution. While it is crucial for those being victimized be a part of the answer, to put them in the position of ending the violence is a good example of why it continues. 

Ok, I feel off the ‘I am good at other things that social services advocacy’. Old habits do die slowly. 

I will create and post daily.

The 2nd challenge is to give away something every day. Because my income has drastically been reduced, I will have to be creative. (There I go again with creating)  This will begin in a few days. 

Both are exciting. Both are great ways to perform. With a different vision that what I had a short time ago.  Let the music begin. Or continue. With an adaptation. To me.
Photo credit Jamelle Sanders

Posted in Uncategorized

Obsession 

Have you ever been obsessed? Unfortunately, I have. Obsessed with, oh I don’t know, let me list the ways:

  • Food
  • Relationships 
  • Looking at Pinterest, Facebook, social media in general 
  • Naps
  • Ignorant television shows

So, you see, I kind of have a tendency to obsess, unless it is a healthy thing then, ironically, I run like hell. Well, actually, that’s not true either because I can only run in my dreams. But, enough of this.

My latest obsession is searching for the perfect pictures to add to this blog. This week I have been attempting to put today’s aspect of me now into the framework of photography or clip art. And, boy did I. 

What I see everywhere now are barriers. My new shower (built and installed by a group of teens on a mission trip) has a 2-3″ lip. Barrier. They also repaired the threshold of my front door. A rise that those who walk freely do not notice. Me? A barrier. A door. My door. Business doors? Barriers. Steps? Big time barrier. No ramp, no go unless my son is there to pull my wheelchair, with me aboard, up.  Toilets without grab bars? Barrier. Grab bars not at the correct height? Barrier. 

I could go on. 

I am attempting to jump start my brain to rethink the world. I believe that many people before me have had to use their creativity to solve each of these and more. Unfortunately, I find myself searching for solutions to my problems from someone else which is problematic because of several reasons. First, everyone has a different view, vision of the problem /barrier. That being said, the solution will be applicable to their viewpoint and oftentimes not to mine. 

Secondly, I have gotten myself to ‘the easiest way possible’. In this case, I want to profit from the actions of others. Why? Well, it can’t be because I have no time. I really have nothing but time. Boredom? Well, maybe. I always have a list of things that need completed and the list remains the same day after day, or worse grows longer. But, the change of thought, my broken string of the day, is that I see things as a barrier and not as a challenge. Barriers are a negative, a scary thing. A challenge is a test and often a game. My brain will be used to create a strategy. A course of action that will be tried. After that I will monitor if it worked or need to be restratigized. Again, I have to remember, I have nothing but time.

To ‘step up’ to this challenge I have a significant ‘barrier’ that will worked out in the next few weeks here. The BIGGEST barrier is self confidence. I am trying different responses to the fear/anxiety that has gotten fairly strong roots from the manure in my mind and soul now. Ideas? Yes, that needs to be my next obsession because this is crippling. 

Yes, my search resulted in doors. Closed now, waiting to be opened. My hand is reaching for the knob. Wish me luck. 

Posted in Uncategorized

The problem with normal 

is that there is no ‘normal’ but nobody tells you that until you get beaten down. We are measured from conception: ow much weight our moms gain in the pregnancy 

How much weight our moms gain in the pregnancy 

How far along when she first felt movement 

Birth weight 

Length

What percentile all the way through childhood 

Only to be replaced by:

Grades

Conduct

Standardized tests

President’s Physical Fitness Test

Number of friends on and off the Web

Age when you reached puberty 

Age when you had your first date

Age when you ‘lost it’

SAT or ACT score

Number of colleges you were accepted into

Number of bedrooms, bathrooms in your first house

Numbers of numbers before the decimal point in your career

Bust size–female 

Penis size–male

AND SO ON AND ON AND ON AND…..

It seems to never end! Well now I find myself competing from an entirely different space–physical disability.  

At my last job I worked for a Center for Inde Living, a CIL. The mission of a CIL is empower people who have a disability live productively in the community. At the time I still walked, with a walker. As I left I had graduated to a scooter. (I have since moved on down the transportation line)  What is strange there was that I worked with several guys who were incomplete quads. They used to tell me how sorry they felt for ME because I was still trying. YIKES! Was I a failure in the disability world?

There are so many ways to look at life and I feel that I am always judging everyone and everything. Is the sidewalk smooth? Do I ‘look’ disabled? Should I ask for help? Accept offered help? Do it by myself so I remain more independent? Ignore the activity altogether? 

I have not made the ‘transition’ gracefully. I guess that sums it up the best. 

But, if I did have a magic wand I think there is something that I would love to do. Anyone who feels the need to tell me that, ‘God doesn’t give you more than you can handle!’ would get the opportunity to live my life for a day. No, actually a week. See how the world fakes being assessible. See how it feels to have the ‘atta girl’ looks. Wonder why people run to get around you and then slow down. Get all the well intended advice–‘don’t get used to the lift chair, use your muscles’ & ‘you had better learn how to conserve your energy’. (Both said to me by the same physical therapist a few days apart) Get invited to something but have no idea how to get there. 
Yes, I would give them just that. A chance to be me. And then, after the week, I would love to sit together and grade each other’s experience. I have to believe that, if a person truly tries to understand, there would be much more efforts made to adapt. 

In the end, I also think that I would see the strength I have. That I have always had.