Dear Papaw III

Dear Papaw,

Tomorrow marks three years you’ve been gone. It may have been years, but it honestly still feels like yesterday. The whole week before and the days that came after play on a loop in my head. Originally, I had a totally different way about how I wanted this letter to go, but I’ve never wanted these to be too snappy. You wouldn’t have liked that anyways. I miss you a lot, even if some people don’t think I do. I think of you whenever I watch basketball, and I often wonder what you’d think of my knowledge about it and the four professional teams I watch on a daily basis. I think you’d be like dad and hate on the Lakers because of LeBron. I don’t blame you. I don’t care for him being on the team either. I wonder if you’d like the Rockets though since they’re the ones I seem to watch and root for the most of course! I understand why you didn’t like it because of how many attempts a player will take to shoot the ball and the whole scoring process, I’m still not understanding that part yet, but I’m slowly getting there.

On the day I wrote this letter, I went looking for a picture for the banner. I was going to attempt to find one of “Alex” with your old Butler shirt but then I found an album that nana made for us in the family to share memories and old photos, and I found one dedicated to you. I had array of pictures to choose from, but once I saw this one, I knew I had to use it. You’re wearing a Butler shirt and if you’ve been watching them from heaven, you know they’re in a desperate need of a miracle, getting through the Big East tournament and March Madness, which will all probably be over with by the time this post goes out, but you know!

I always thought it was funny how Rick would continue to buy you a Butler shirt for your birthday or Christmas and you’d wear it once maybe and then stuff it back in the closet. You were pretty consistent with your fashion in your old age. We all thought you looked adorable in anything you wore, even if you had food spills down your shirt and pants, we didn’t care. We laughed at you, and apparently you’ve been getting back at us for doing so, because we all tend to spill our food on our shirts a lot more than we usually do.

We are all in agreement that you visit little Nolan. Em posted a video of him reaching up to an invisible spirit; it gave me goosebumps! He is so smart! He actually reminds me of you in the fact that you wouldn’t really flaunt your smarts, sorry, I couldn’t think of a better word there! I think you would have loved him dearly. Now, if you can talk ChiChi into letting him pet her easier, that would be nice. He is so curious about his surroundings, and ChiChi is the only animal that is afraid of him. Honestly, if you saw him in his walker or “car” as we call it, you’d be terrified too! The best way to compare the experience is a four year old me racing around the house in my wheelchair!

Hope you are enjoying yourself wherever you are, and watch over all of us down here too, not just the youngsters. We’re still a quirky bunch but we all need an angel at our side sometimes. Although, I feel like you’d be like a bit of a jokester still, so be good too. You don’t want to get on God’s bad side! So no pranks with some of your friends up there. You told me way too many stories of you growing up with them to know that you all can get into some mischief. Anyways, I love you.

Your granddaughter,
Meg-han.

A-Z Disability Challenge | D : Dear Disability Community

Howdy!

For today, I am basically writing a letter to the disability community. This post is going to a very strong, opinionated piece. I have been keeping a lot of these thoughts locked up for a long time and I think it’s time to unleash them on here. So you’ve been warned!

I feel like the disability and feminist communities are fairly similar with the way people within it can be quick to judge you if you don’t agree with a certain subject. Everybody thinks we all should have the same feelings about the main topic that both groups discuss, like equality and you role as a human being. I’ve been thinking about the role and where I stand on the various topics that both groups fight for on a daily basis, but I’m mainly targeting disabled people.


I think I’m an army of one. I’ve always thought that, because I was kind of taught that over the years. The only back-up I have is my family and maybe some close family friends, but hardly any of them share the same feelings as me, especially about disability in general, because they’re not in my shoes, or maybe in this case we’ll say “wheels?” It’s not their fault by any means, and I’ve kind of learned to live with it. I’ve become more of a silent advocate for the community. I don’t join a lot of the discussions of bigger topics, like politics. When I was in high school, we were taught how to register to vote and if you already 18, you were allowed to go ahead and do it in class. When I was asked to do it, I said no. There was a lot of backlash for it, one person even told me that I wasn’t allowed to complain if a person you’re rooting for doesn’t win because I didn’t vote. Fast forward to 2016, after seeing the chaos, I don’t think my vote would have mattered because Trump had bewitched the public into letting him into the White House anyways.

The second reason why was because I was afraid of basically breaking rank in my household. My parents are strong Republicans and being somebody, who supports the opposite committee or person, is literally the worse thing you could possibly do. So, I try my best to stay far away from politics at home and even online within my own community. Despite the fact that the majority of the disabled people out there, hate our President as much as I do, there are some very extreme people who will do anything to “stand up” for their rights.

At the start of 2017 I think, I saw a video of a news channel filming people with various disabilities, some of them removing themselves out of their wheelchairs, lying on the ground, and being carried away by security and police officers to jail. I’ve never been in a position to feel like that was my only option, but I was conflicted at the thought of seeing how far people in different circumstances doing anything and everything to plead to people, even making a spectacle of themselves. However, whenever a bill that contains something about disabled people, I am concerned but all I feel like I can do physically is pray.

The next topic I’d like to discuss is about the death of Stephan Hawking. There was a cartoon drawing of Stephan ascending to Heaven, free of his wheelchair, computer, and tubes, and he’s shown walking up the golden stairs to the sky. I thought it was a beautiful drawing, but a lot of wheelchair users were really angry about it. Immediately, there were arguments being made about being in a wheelchair is a form of being “free” and that the drawing just added to the myth that once we die, we’re free of all of our flaws: disabilities included.

Again, this was another thing that I chose to stay out of, because I did not agree with the disabled community on two things. Throughout my childhood, I was told by various family members that when we die, our bodies will be transformed if you will. As I got older, I began to believe this more and have always looked forward to that possibility. And the other was, I don’t believe my wheelchair gives me my freedom. Am I mobile? Yes, but I am not free to move around for a long distance by myself. I feel like I have the most freedom when I’m on the floor. Why? Because there’s more space to spread things out, I don’t need everything right beside me at all times. There are issues with reaching for things that are higher than me, but I always find my way around it.

I know I’m going to be attacked in some form by the words I’ve said in this post, but I still stand by what I believe and that is, we’re not all supposed to have the same feelings and nobody is going to make me convert to their way of thinking, trust me, people have tried their hardest to do this for years! I’ve heard many different sides of these two subjects online, mostly on Twitter and so far, nobody’s said anything to divert me in another direction, the only thing I’ve learned to do is hold my tongue and I’m perfectly fine with doing that for the rest of my life.

How do you stay out of the drama with your family, friends and/or online? Are there topics you do not discuss at all?

I Hope God Sees My Open Letter Tonight.

For the past few weeks I’ve been very lazy and just bored out of my mind. When I was doing physically therapy twice a week, for thirteen weeks. I was very nervous at first because I didn’t think I would being around a bunch of elderly people. For the first two sessions, I was fine. I no longer had that worry and I was actually bringing my happy face everytime I went there and they seemed to enjoy me being around them. So before I finished my time there. I started remembering when I was about to start college and it was everything I wanted just wasn’t going to happen like I wanted. As I was doing my online classes, I was becoming very depressed. I never went to the doctor for it, because I don’t think anybody really understood why I was so upset. When something doesn’t work out the way you want it, and as quickly as you want it to, I can understand you can get very sad. For me, as a person who didn’t understand my parents worries about me living on campus and everything else. Two weeks before I was supposed to start my classes, things started turning around and I begin falling into this dark hole, if you will. I was there for probably four and a half months. Somehow I got out of it by December. The reason why I’m talking about it on here is because I’m afraid my body is getting me ready to send me down that dark hole again.

It has been two weeks and I miss the routine of it. So when I was sad about stopping therapy, I was more afraid of not finding something that would get me in some type of routine again. That’s what I liked about school, I had five days of getting up at 7am and coming home at 3pm and do it all over again. Yeah, it was tiring at times, but you don’t realize how much you need that after not having it. After stopping therapy, I was worried about how long it’ll take me to find something to get me into a routine again. I haven’t done my stretches either for two weeks either. I definitely saw that one coming too. Yeah, some of them are my fault, but my arms are not getting worked on. I can’t do my arm stretches on my own either. I’m just getting tired of waiting for something to come. They always say, if you want something, go get it. Well, explain to me how I’m supposed to get something when I don’t even know what I want? That’s my excuse for not going back to college. I feel like if I continue to go on like this, I may not get myself out of this depression.