Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Friday, October 08, 2010
I have been confronting recently this ever haunting issue of dependence, and realizing my need for inter-dependence. Similar to most people with disabilities, I have trained, rehab-ed, struggled and fought for every ounce of independence I now have. So the idea of hiring someone to come in to assist around the house a couple times a week is just simply heinous, and I have been quietly throwing some adolescent tantrums after succumbing to the inevitable…. That Megan Smith is not an island surrounded by vast, empty, person-less bodies of water, despite all efforts to be so. Though I do believe with enough money this very well could be my future. Someone else coming into my house to vacuum has suddenly made me reflect on my fascist like desire to be independent, and how country specific this fervency is. On reflection I realized how willing I was to be completely and absolutely dependent, physically, on relative strangers in Nepal, Peru, Morocco, Costa Rica, and Algeria etc... I mean I allowed three men to carry me up a mountain, without my chair, and I allowed myself to be utterly dependent on them even in going to the bathroom. But here in America, allowing someone to vacuum my floor makes me cringe.
I realized, especially after re-reading my thesis, that my interaction with others is defined to a greater degree by public opinion and societal view of disability. To clarify, when I had such assistance in Nepal and other nations, I did not feel like charity or eternally indebted to them. Their assistance to me was equally balanced by the work I did with them, so no one was put on a higher, lower pedestal than the other. In America, no matter how kind hearted the person assisting you are, there is a general view of needing assistance as disdainful. When I go out with my mum or really anyone, they are generally viewed as my caretaker, and as such people will talk to them instead of myself. Consequently, wherever I go, I feel this constant need to exhibit myself as completely independent, even if that means telling a friend to wait in the car or even walk a little away from me so people won’t assume his/her caretaker status. This is ridiculous I know, but when someone like me struggles and works incredibly hard to live a life completely independently, it’s a slap in the face whenever I go out to have the assumption made that I have a caretaker.
In this way, I realized that this is the reason for this militant type effort to be and maintain independence in America, and how I must evolve and realize that my life is a hell of a lot easier with people on my island.
On an additional note I have realized what an amazing, philanthropic service I have been providing for the male species. After a man recently carried me into a restaurant, he appeared quite pleased with himself and all puffed up, with his wife and friends congratulating him on being such a great Samaritan, and I realized that if I have done nothing else in this world, I have done absolute wonders to a great many male egos. (and perhaps to the businesses of many chiropractic practitioners)
Sunday, September 19, 2010
I suppose it is because i must now rely solely upon my somewhat temperamental body to control a vehicle that could very well kill me or others. Now I've done some very stupid, life threatening things in my life (a record of them is on this blog hahah) but it seems in those instances that i could rationalise it to where if i was injured in a riot in Nepal or in he mountains of Peru there was a slight cool factor, but injuring myself by rear ending a car on a grass valley roadway. not so romantic.
At any rate, the public shall not fear as after my lesson with the adaptive driver rainer, i discovered I'm a surprisingly good and safe driver.
On another note, as i left my town eagerly and was no exactly ino he high school scene, i know very few people my age. But i also realised tha as i am so accustomed to travelling every few months I have very little practice in having those normal, daily relationships (romantic or otherwise). Funnily i realised i could always use "Well, is been nice but I'm leaving the country next week". I'm actually not THAT bad but it's the same kind of sentiment, that i am now having to look a prospecive relationships as long term ones that require work and effort. At any rate, despite being jobless and having friends in a variety of timezones I am content to start my cozy hibernation in my forest enclosed mountain house with the lovely cool gray weather.
Thursday, September 02, 2010
I am so sick of having to smile and be effusively thankful in order to be helped into an inaccessible building that has absolutely no excuse to be so.
I shall be posting “Disabled People not Allowed” on every inaccessible building. See if people question taking their business there.
Thursday, August 19, 2010
To skim the surface of countries and periodically drop into big abysses where you find yourself connecting on a profound level with different people, only to climb out again and revert to skimming, demands that you develop a self sustaining core irrespective of those around you. Its a remarkably difficult thing to do, to be this single entity moving through lives attaching and detaching.
At any rate, I'm finding it difficult at the moment to attach and involve myself in my community in northern California, after coming back home after graduating university. Finding it remarkably difficult to be directionless wanderer, ironic eh?
Thursday, April 08, 2010
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
I found myself thinking, 'this is too much effort', 'Japan is small, and even if they had access the Japanese are quite reserved and would not help me', 'Can't find a hotel that's accessible, must be a sign that i shouldn't go.' All of these are completely and absolutely absurd. I realised I went to Costa Rica not being completely sure i could dress myself independently, and have since visited over 20 countries. This trip has blown air and poured gasoline on that dying ember of passion i have for exploring the world. I have truly realised the power of the mind for the first time, while it may not get you up the flight of stairs, it will make you take the back, bumpy, dirt road which leads you to somewhere so much better. I feel like i have fallen in love again, which I must say is such a lovely feeling.