Let’s Meet Alex

15 Sep

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This week, I am going to blog every day about someone that I know who is leading the way showing the world that the word “disabled” does NOT mean “not able”. Yes, I know that is what the dictionary says, and that is what many in society actually think about those of us that have disabilities, but it is all wrong.

As we continue to talk about Spinal Cord Injury Awareness in the month of September, I can think of no better way to make you aware than allow you to meet some of my amazing friends who have spinal cord injuries. I am proud to know them and admire each of them. Not because they are disabled, but because they do not allow that disability to define them.

Today, I would like to introduce you to Alex Jackson.

I have met Alex since I have moved to South Carolina through the SC Spinal Cord Injury Association. He has an amazing smile that will capture your eye right away! The next thing you notice after that is his camera! He is a very talented photographer and rolls around capturing the beauty that he sees.

Alex has been a quadriplegic since he was injured in a car accident as a small infant.

Here is his bio:

I was born and raised in Charleston, SC and was injured in a car accident when I was an infant. I have C5-C6 incomplete SCI.

Now 27 years old, I haven’t let my disability interfere with the ability to accomplish my goals. I have a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts in Communication, both from College of Charleston. Throughout college, I hosted a radio show called The ‘A’ Train, where I shared my experiences of living with a disability. I also DJ’d gospel and R&B music.

I still enjoy sharing how I live with a disability, but now I tell my story through my blog, Tuesday Talk With Alex. On my site, you can find information about current disability issues. I also share photos and videos of me driving my van, wall climbing and playing tennis. I’m an avid photographer and enjoy taking pictures of sunsets, flowers and other nature scenes.

I’m working as a writer and editor in the Public Affairs Office for the Space and Naval Warfare Command (SPAWAR) in North Charleston, SC. When I’m not working, I volunteer my time with a number of disability organizations, including AccessAbility and the local chapter of the SC Spinal Cord Injury Association.

I’m grateful for all of my abilities. My motto in life is that “I’m living with a disability and a purpose!” and I want to share that with the world.

As you can see, Alex is more than able! He has accomplished more with a disability than many able bodied people I know. Be sure to check out his blog, “Tuesday Talk With Alex”. Alex, I am honored to know you! Keep up the good work!

Enjoy some of his gorgeous photos! I know the one I have picked for my wall!

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Spinal Cord Injury and….Female Fashion!

13 Sep

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As we continue our Spinal Cord Injury Awareness month in September, I thought I would share some specific info about a struggle that we women face. So guys, you may already be checking out on me! I won’t scare you, I promise! Let me say, that I know some guys struggle with this issue also but it is not discussed like the gals discuss it.

There are some great Facebook groups set up for learning from our peers with paralysis. It is a lot of fun engaging with other ladies who are paralyzed. Alright, you guys are fun too but I relate a little more to the gals! A conversation going on in one of those groups is the topic of today’s post.

It was started by a friend of mine who is newly paralyzed and struggling with a VERY common struggle for all of us that sit in chairs – FASHION! Why did I just yell that word? Because it is SO frustrating at times to feel like you look good in your chair!

Let me share some of the problems:

- Clothes are not designed for the sitting person.
No one goes into a dressing room to try something on and says, “Oh! Let me sit down so I will look better!” No, we go in, try it on, turn sideways and suck in our gut and decided if we look skinny enough in it or not. Or so some of us used to. Because we are sitting, many tops just bunch up in our laps adding extra fabric everywhere. No one wants a shirt that comes to your knees!

- Lack of muscle control.
Many of us lack some abdominal muscles. This gives even the thinnest gals a pooched belly just because there are no stomach muscles to hold in your insides. So, they pooch out! If you are trying to look pulled together, you really don’t want to emphasize a round stomach! So, we need blouses that will hide our tummies AND not have an extra yard of fabric laying in our laps.

- Our broken thermostats.
A spinal cord injury breaks your internal thermostat. It is very hard to cool down once you get hot, and it is extremely hard to get warm once you get cold. Our clothing can greatly help or hurt this process! Dressing warmly in cold seasons can make a huge difference in how long I will be miserable and vice versa and not overheating in the summer.

- Getting dressed is NOT an easy task.
The clothes that we pick to wear cannot be too complicated to wear or we just can’t get them on and off very easy. Asking a quad with limited hand dexterity to wear a button up shirt would take a huge amount of time just to try and get it buttoned. A pullover is much simpler. Not only do we need to get dressed in the morning, but anytime we need to restroom, we have to wrestle clothes. I think the pulling up and down of clothes takes more time than emptying our bladders! My bathroom time can be greatly increased just by what clothes I wear! If you think this doesn’t matter it does. Try going into a bathroom with your friends and they are all completely finished, hands washed and dried and they are waiting on you and you still haven’t even started because you are still wrestling clothes! It really can be frustrating.

- Our tires eat up long sleeves.
Imagine taking the bottom of your shoes and continually wiping them on the cuffs and arms of your sleeves. This is what our tires do to our clothes! I have SO many stained and chewed cuffs of hoodies and jackets because of my wheelchair tires. It cannot be helped. Rain, snow, gum….you name it…it has been on my sleeves!

- Pressure sores.
We have to be very careful of back pockets or snaps or buttons or seams! Those little things can give us BIG problems!

- Strong arms!
We use our arms for everything so we get some biceps on us! That is good….until you try to wear certain pieces of clothing. They don’t fit your upper arms very well and your arms are restricted from rolling. Coats, suit jackets, and certain shirts bind you and you can hardly get your arms back to give yourself a push.

- Shoes are limiting.
We have feet that swell and flop. Toes don’t go in shoes real easy without bending backwards. Adorable flip-flops fall off our feet It is very hard to keep feet on our footplate if there is much of a heel at all. Sometimes the angle of our feet on our footplates (like if you even try a heel) can set off spasms. We have to be careful if our feet swell to not get a pressure sore on our feet from shoes that have gotten too tight without us knowing it.

- Our self-image.
Shopping for clothes that look good sitting down without you holding yards of fabric, fit you right and look decent on bodies that have changed shape due to paralysis, are fairly easy to take on and off, picking sleeves and colors that will hopefully stay clean and fit your upper arms, staying alert for big seams and buttons or snaps, layering abilities so we can add too or take off so our temperature stays even, and then finding fashionable shoes that match your outfit can be a very tall order to fill! It can leave you discouraged, extremely frustrated and feeling frumpy and unattractive. It can really take a toll on your self-esteem. We are not shallow enough to think that our worth is in our appearance, however, we want to look just as attractive and stylish as we did before paralysis.

Those are some of the problems with the paralysis fashion world! However, I don’t want to leave you thinking we are victims of the fashion world! We have learned a few things along the way! There is hope beyond sweat pants and t-shirts!

Some helps:
– Stretch denim pants, knit skirts, and elastic waists!
– Leggings with longer tunics over them.
– Soft cardigans or knit suit jackets that stretch and move for our arms.
– Soft, silky blouses that lay in soft folds instead of big bulk.
– Cute flats, Sperry’s, Converse tennis shoes in adorable colors, Ugg boots for warmth in the winter, riding boots, and for those who
can without spasming….heels that can be tucked behind a footplate. Just don’t hit too many bumps! :)
– The knowledge that women with disabilities have already overcome many things. We will conquer fashion too!

Let me give a shout out to my friend, Priscilla Hedlin, who models her fashion as “The Stylish Gimp” on her blog, The Wheelchair Mommy. Go see how she overcomes her fashion crisis and makes a statement!

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Did You Know? A list of things you may not have known about paralysis!

7 Sep

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As we take this month to highlight spinal cord injury paralysis, I made a list of some things that you may not have known! If you are paralyzed and want to add to my list, leave a comment and I will add it in!

Did you know?

That paralysis that affects just your legs is called paraplegia (para=two)?

That paralysis that affects your legs and arms both is called quadriplegia (or tetraplegia in Europe)(quad/tetra=four)?

That paralysis that affects one side of your body is called hemiplegia (hemi=half)?

That your level of paralysis is determined by where your spinal cord was damaged at? The higher the damage, the more your are paralyzed.

That there is a difference between a completely paralyzed person and an incomplete paralyzed person? Complete usually means that there spinal cord was completely severed or damaged and they have no feeling or movement below their level of injury. Incomplete means they have some movement or feeling below their level of injury (that could mean just a toe wiggle).

That not walking is just one paralysis problem?

That loss of bowel, bladder and sexual function, temperature control, energy levels, spasms, pain, pressure sores and UTI’s can frustrate us more than not walking?

That 1 in 50 people live with some level of paralysis? That is nearly 6 millions people!

That we are capable of marrying, parenting and living as productive citizens?

That we do not find it amusing when you tell us that “you sure wished you could ride around all day”? We would have a hard time wishing this on our worst enemies.

That even though we would not wish it on anyone, most of us do not play the victim card and enjoy our lives?

That there are many wonderful inventions that have been made to make our lives easier?

That spasms make us look like we can move certain body parts? One lady told me once that she saw my toes moving and she was pretty sure I could move them and just didn’t know it. I just smiled. My legs and feet move when they want and I have nothing to do with it. No. I am not suddenly healed. Let me say, that I can get my big toes to move sometimes but it takes a lot of work and much concentration!

That our necks get really, really, really, really….okay, you get it….sore when we talk to a lot of you as you stand and talk to us? My favorite people are those who come to talk to me and sit down next to me. Well, maybe they are not MY favorites, but they sure are my necks favorites!

That we like to figure out our own problems. We are very used to barriers in our lives and we have become experts on how to get around them. You don’t have to solve things. Just ask us and we will figure it out!

That “bitter cripple” is a really bad stereotype and that few actually exist?

That many people whose legs are paralyzed, also have paralyzed abdominal muscles? We do not have very good balance at all. Our chairs our built to help us keep our balance.

That if you grab someone and push them wildly or tip them, you could throw off their balance and they could fall out of their chairs? Or you could cause their bodies to spasm and they could get hurt. Be sure to ask before you grab someone.

That we always appreciate prayers, but we do not want “prayed over” or hands laid on us, or called out in a service for prayer unless we request it?

That some of us desperately want healed, but others of us feel that paralysis has changed our lives for the better and would not change that? Let each paralyzed person speak for themselves on that matter, but don’t assume healing is our only chance for happiness.

That we are just normal people who laugh, love, dream and desire?

And finally…..

That we love each of you to taking this month to learn a little bit more about spinal cord injury?

Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month

4 Sep

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September has been set aside as spinal cord injury awareness month. Who is behind this? I’m not 100% sure, but I am for it!

Just last week, I went to Wal-Mart all alone. That is a rare occurrence because I always have a kid or someone with me just for fun. However, I had dropped the kids off at school and needed some things so off I went. I pulled in and the “normal-for-me-routine” started. My seat readjusts as I recline it as far as I can making space between my body and the steering wheel. Out came the frame of my chair as I lifted it over my body and out my door onto the ground. Then the wheels come out as I put them back on my chair. That is followed by putting the back, side guards and cushion back in place.  Now…I am ready to transfer!

As I was just about to transfer, I was aware of a lady that quickly pulled in beside me. I am not sure where she was watching me from, but she bounded out of her vehicle and asked if she could help me. I was already finished by then, but I thanked her.

As I came out of the store and was loading myself back up (all in reverse order), a man just stopped his cart and just stood there watching me. He said, “I am not trying to be rude. I am just completely intrigued that you can do all that.” I said, “Thank you! You can watch.” He did not offer to help as he saw that I had it under control.

It hit me that day, that every time I am out in public and active, I am bringing awareness to spinal cord damage. I am breaking stereotypes and portraying a new image to what it means to live a full and happy life….which is contrary to what many people still believe.

This month, I will be using my blog to spotlight many facets of paralysis. From videos, to interviews, to my opinions on gadget and technology, to introducing you to some of my awesome friends with spinal cord injuries….I hope you will stay tuned in this month!

A New Chapter In My Life

11 Aug

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Next week, on August 18, a new chapter in my life will begin. For almost 10 years I have homeschooled my children. I absolutely love having my children around me every day. They are the joy of my life! There are days that we can get grouchy with one another, but overall we have a great time together. Laughter is a key ingredient in our house and I enjoy my kids so much!

During the year of my paralysis, the “academic” part of school got behind. We did the very best we could, but there were so many doctor and hospital visits, then therapy that took 3 days a week, and so many days that I was very ill and could not do school that it has been very hard to catch back up. We decided that year that our focus just could not be academic. We did school, but we focused on character, our faith in God and house skills. Our world had been turned upside down and we were all trying to learn where to land! The children flourished that year in those areas. I am so proud of my children and the skills they possess that many adults cannot even do! Ever since that year, in school work though, I have felt like I was chasing a moving train and I never quite had caught it. I felt that some of my children were catching up but others were not and it was very hard trying to get all of them caught up together!

This year, my oldest daughter Briley starts high school. My youngest son, Elisha, starts K5. Then, there are those precious 4 in the middle.I don’t know if it has been because of two major moves in the last year or what, but starting school with those dynamics this year seemed completely and absolutely overwhelming and not at all possible. My Jimmy and I sat on our deck for an entire afternoon as I told him that I just could not do it. I like to be a strong woman and I feel I have faced many challenges but this one had me licked. I felt that my kids were not catching up. I felt that high school is so very important for their college days. I felt that all would get some of what they needed, but they would all not get what they needed. I poured my heart out and told Jimmy that I just did not know what else to do and that I was sorry, but I could not do it! I think I sort of resigned. We talked that day about the possibility of him doing high school with Briley and me handling the rest but even that thought alone churned my stomach in fear! We concluded that we would pray about it.

The next morning, I was taking my shower and praying. That is my favorite spot to talk to the Lord about my heartaches! I was a mess!!! I was crying my head off (which is not like me at all!) and telling The Lord that I could not handle it this year and could He please help me. I told Him that I did not want to add to Jimmy’s workload as he is a full-time pastor and I did not want my kids to be mad at me when they tried to get in to college and I needed something because I was a mess…..and on and on I rambled to my Heavenly Father. I love, love, love that I can do that and that He can handle me just fine! I felt better after dumping it all on Him and decided to just pray. I tried pricing local Christian schools that I knew about and they were all so expensive it wasn’t even a close option.

The next morning, something popped up on my newsfeed from a school called The Ridge Christian School. It was right in our town! Actually, it was 4 miles from our house! I had not heard of it so I went to their Facebook page and called them. My first question was how much? All the other schools I had called were expensive so I was not getting my hopes up!

To make a long story short, this school believes in being a ministry first to help families. They are an Abeka video school. They are a small school with about 20 students last year. We met with them to see if we liked them (and them us) and to discuss options to make this happen. They were so precious to work with us and already had wonderful prices! I will be volunteering there 3 days a week WITH my children (who I dearly love being with) to make tuition even more affordable. It will give me 2 days off to do what I need to do to keep up my home since everything takes me twice as long and I wear out pretty quick. We already love the couple that runs the school and the kids are so excited.

God heard my cry!! I know without a doubt that God has helped me! The night we decided that we were going to make this change I struggled with “buyers remorse”. I have always homeschooled my kids and was worrying that this was going to ruin them for life. Then, I felt guilty that I think it is all about me anyway. I know that God has brought a way for us and my pride was rearing its head telling me that if my kids aren’t homeschooled by me, then they may not turn out right. I have to let go and trust The Lord…and others…to help me. I have trouble accepting help and this is just another avenue in my life where God is showing me that I just can’t do everything I want to. I have to accept help. Can I trust The Lord to help my kids like He has me? Can I trust other good Christian people to influence my children? Yes, I can.

This is an exciting chapter for me!! My husband is excited, I am excited and the kids can’t wait! Now, you have my permission to say the word “school” around me without me going into a full blown cardiac arrest! I am so thankful to The Lord for guiding us in our lives and His love and care for me and my family. Please pray for us in this new chapter!

The Risk of Practical Love

4 Aug

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Many people talk of love. “Love one another”, “Husbands, love your wives”, “Wives, love your husbands”, “Love your children”, “Love God”, “Love those less fortunate” and on and on. They are good words because many of them come straight from God’s Word!! I love talking about the love of God and His love for me. It IS the love of God that brings me peace, joy, comfort, guidance, and secured my eternal destiny. Oh how I am thankful for God’s love!

But talk is cheap. We could talk all day about loving everybody, but if I never showed them that love would it mean anything to them? For example, my hubby could tell me every day that he loves me (and he does), but if he never did one thing to help me or never asked me what could he do for me that day would I believe his words? No. I could tell my kids that I love them all the time, but if I never take anytime with them or listen to their hearts or help plan my schedule around what they would like to do will they ever feel my love? No. God told me that He loved me, but that was not enough. He did something about it. He had a plan of redemption that was put into action for me! That is love!

Love is not just words. Love is action. Love says something, and then does something to prove it. Jesus said, “If you love me (that is our words), then keep my commandments (that is action). God says He loves us, but then He acts in our lives to prove it. So, when we are “actively” loving God, our husbands, our wives, our children, our neighbors, our friends, our church, and our community we will have action that follows those words.

This past week, I was honored to be the guest speaker at a Joni and Friends Family Retreat. I have attended and helped before and I have never been a part of something more practical in love. The term “we are the hands and feet of Jesus this week” is used many times. I like that definition. Practical love = being the hands and feet of Jesus in someone else’s life. Would you like a glimpse of what love looked like last week?

~ Circles of moms crying, laughing, hugging and talking together because they all have special needs kids and they get it.

~ A little child that cannot control their body is being taken care of by a buddy. They are swinging and playing with them and drool starts flying everywhere because that child cannot control it. The buddy wipes it off and acts like it never even happened and continues to play.

~ A beautiful brother and sister who communicate through interpreters were surrounded by people all week long who stopped to just sit and talk with them.

~ Young adults in wheelchairs who could not get enough people willing to push them to wherever they wanted to go!

~ Blind friends who were amazingly gifted in poetry and singing and passion were handed microphones and an outlet to share their vision with us.

~ Teens would clear the tables for families so that they could just rest.

~ Services would stop so the one young man who absolutely loved to come and talk in a microphone could just come up and say “Ladies and gentlemen, can I have your attention – have a good day!” and then the service would continue.

~ A lady who was not with us very much in her mind, was drawn to the worship leader as he sang. She moved around a lot in her wheelchair with never any real place to go, but every morning she would roll over to him. I watched him just take her hand and hold it while he led and she would just sit and listen.

~ Autistic children screamed during service times and others would turn and smile…not scowl.

~ A young girl with Down Syndrome who wanted to show her talent of sword fighting with foam swords suddenly screamed out , “NO!!!! I can’t!!! I can’t!!!” and everyone just patiently waited while her buddy encouraged her that she didn’t have to but if she wanted to try we were here for her. She charged on the stage and they started! She squealed out, “I did it!!! I did it!!!” and our crowd roared with cheers with her!

~ A young man with Down Syndrome who wanted to sing and and while we waited, he stopped and just started praying. You have never witnessed a more real conversation with God. All stopped. We joined him prayer humbled by the fact that we knew we were missing what he had with God. Then he sang. Oh that I would depend on my God like that before I do anything!

There are so many more and I cannot take the space to speak them all. Such practical love shown by all and to all. The allowing of all of God’s children to use their gifts and talents for The Lord!

There are risks and hurts with this kind of love though. Just ask these families, who for many, get only rejection from their churches. The kids are too loud, they make us nervous, they are messy, they gross me out, they are not normal and make my children nervous, and on and on. This is why they look forward to Family Retreat so much. They get practical love!!!!!

Practical love does get messy. Just ask Jesus when He touched the bodies of the lepers. Practical love does make people nervous. Just ask those who wanted to stone the woman caught in adultery and Jesus asked them to list their sins. Practical love is gross. Just ask the man possessed with demons who was constantly naked and cutting himself. Practical love will leave wheelchair tire marks on newly polished floors. Practical love will stain carpets. Practical love will require new paint jobs. Practical love will focus on individual needs – not just a one size fits all approach. Jesus did not yell out across all the lands, “Everyone be healed!!!!” He could have. It would have been a lot neater, took less time and He could have gotten back to the program. Oh wait. That WAS the program! Practical love was the program. How else would those of us know He loved us if He did not act and move in our lives personally?

People will get mad, they will misquote and misinterpret, they will falsely accuse, they will manipulate and twist your words. Those are the risks. How many times have we said that if we had been the only person in the world, Jesus would have still come to rescue my soul? So if our only reward is that through our practical love….being the hands and feet of Jesus in our homes, our churches and our communities….help just one person, then the rewards far outweighs all the risks!

Christ’s love for me was messy. It was a cruel and bloody mess on the cross of Calvary. Because of that, I don’t mind getting messy for Him. Christ actively shows me His love. Because of that, I don’t mind showing others His love. Christ’s love was personal. Because of that, I want my love to be personal to others. It is the love of Christ that constrains (which means controls) me. It drives me to action!!

I cannot worry about those who like to extinguish the practical love of Christ being demonstrated. They use a lot of oxygen but accomplish very little. I will go on not worrying about those whose lives they never touch. Instead, I will go forward thankful that I have been touched by Jesus and will follow His example!

I am going to leave you with this video of a song sung by my friends, Megan Ritchey (who has cerebral palsey and uses a power chair) and Zach Holler (who has a very rare condition that affects his mobility, his hearing and his sight). They are singing more than a song. They are singing their testimony. They live the truths of this song. It is called “Blessings” and is one of my very favorite songs now that I am paralyzed. The beauty and simplicity of my friends singing this and the emotion felt through the interpreter in sign language is the cry of our hearts. Thank you Megan and Zach for choosing this song for us!

http://youtu.be/OSSO5HctoSA

“Oh Lord, thank you for your love. Help me to follow You and do my part in building Your Kingdom!”

For more information about Joni and Friends Family Retreats, please visit www.joniandfriends.org

My Thoughts On Being “An Inspiration”

20 Jul

I watched them. They had been married for over 50 years and they still snuggled up next to each other. I could tell they actually liked each other…after 50 years of marriage! I want that marriage after 50 years. I was inspired.

I know a Mom with many children…12 to be exact. I was around her a lot! She is one of my very favorite people in the world. She is not a saint…but probably pretty close! I loved being at her house as a kid and I still love it now. She was always so loving and calm. She didn’t endure her kids. She liked them. She enjoyed them. They all still adore her to this day. She inspired me to want my own large brood!

In Disability Land, this idea of being an inspiration is tossed about with different opinions. Some don’t mind, but others are very offended! If I run to the store to grab some milk for my family, and someone looks at me with sad eyes and tells me how wonderful it is (or how brave I am) that I get out in public, well, that doesn’t always hit me so well.

Once I went with one of my besties to a concert where her girls were performing. The auditorium really only had one little space for a wheelchair to sit and then it cascaded up a set of really wide steps. Our family came to be with our friends and support their girls, so the idea of sitting all alone in my designated spot wasn’t going over so well. I just told me hubby to pop me up those steps (they were good and wide and my chair easily set on each step) and I would transfer into a seat and sit near my friend! On my way up the steps, one dear lady looked at me and said, “You are SOOOO brave!” Uhm, thank you. I am not trying to be brave. I am just trying to do a normal thing and sit with my friend!

I have had some look at me and say, “I don’t know how you do it. If I was paralyzed, I would kill myself. You really inspire me.” Well, I just don’t know how to really answer that. Part of me thinks, “How bad do you think my life is?!!”. The other part of me says, “I can’t believe that a paralyzed life would have no value to you!!” Another part of me thinks they are extremely selfish people. There are people in my life that are so happy I am alive…paralyzed or not. I happen to be happy about being alive too! So that statement is pretty offensive to me.

Do I like being inspirational for buying milk, enjoying a personal outing or just breathing? No, not really.

Allow me to flip the coin now.

I have met many who have stereotypes about wheelchair users. They have never been around an active wheelchair user, or they are stuck in a bit of a cultural time-warp. They mean no harm and most are the older population. They are shocked to find out I can shower myself, drive a car, transfer without help, mother children, take care of my home, cook, workout and on and on. Do I like changing this perception? Yes, I do! I like to inspire new thoughts! I like to inspire new mentalities! I like to inspire new perceptions!

I have also met many disabled people who do not push themselves at all. They don’t have much of a life. They are content to live with family and be taken care of. They are discouraged, lonely and not seeing a very happy future for themselves. I am not talking about those who must have caretakers because they do not have the functions to do it themselves (like a high level quadriplegic). I know several high level quadriplegics who need personal care but they live a very full and active life! I am talking about those who are held back by their own fears and insecurities. Do I like to inspire them that they are more capable than they think? Yes I do!

Some of my most rewarding times, are when someone learns a new skill and I have been the one to teach it to them. I have a close family member that was born with a disability who was inspired that he was capable of living alone. I have a dear friend who never thought she would be able to drive. I will NEVER forget the day she came and picked me up for lunch! I have another friend who was able to learn how to put her own chair in the car with her. Those are precious times and I am so thankful that I was able to help inspire them to move ahead farther in life!

Then there are those who love to live as a martyr. It doesn’t matter if they are disabled or not, they are the ultimate victim. They have all the quick answers as to why their marriage just won’t make it, their kids don’t like them, they can’t keep a job, they won’t work on their health, how life has treated them unfairly and…..well, pretty much everyone and everything is against them. I don’t know if I ever could inspire them or not, but I would love to try. I would love for them to know that life is life. We are all faced with challenges and things that can knock the breath out of us. But….excuses and being a victim just hold you down. Only when you decide that you are not going to be held captive by your circumstances, and decide to be a victor instead of a victim, can you shed your circumstance and rise above it! I have a very hard time not going into “pep talk” mode when I am around these kind of people.

If I can inspire people to quit looking at their problems, and instead look at their possibilities, then I am all in!

I love to see those frowns turn into smiles!

Do I mind being an inspiration? No, I do not.

I love being inspired by others to go forward in my life, and I absolutely love it if I can help others go forward in theirs!

(I though you might enjoy this pic I saw on Facebook. It is pretty funny, although I really don’t mind some of these things.)

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