|Yes, alcohol can help cause a significant number
of Acquired Brain Injuries, but it's the person who uses it, not the store. The store, brand new this year, is fully accessible, a far cry from the previous location.
|The door opens, widely, through which I'm able to drive my scooter straight in.|
I’ve heard it, pretty much my whole life (pre-crash included), that actions speak louder than words, but since the crash, and being visibly disabled, it’s crystal clear. People, no matter who, pretty much will always say that they’ll help someone who needs it, but being asked to is easy. The true heroes are the people who see what they can do to help, and offer. They don’t assume that what they can do is needed, so they usually ask. The true heroes know that simply doing something for someone, without being asked, is usually somewhat insulting.
I used to think that I show that I’m useless, and didn’t correct them when they simply assumed that, which was bad. I’m trying to adjust my thinking to that they simply don’t know, and are trying their best. I honestly don’t know what’s the best way to tell people that.
On the whole, it’s hard to say “what’s right”, because how it’s received is like the injury itself, in that it’s unique to the individual. I’ve basically gotten used to accepting the fact that people want to help, so if they want to do something that I know I can do myself, I don’t do anything, and say thank you. If I objected, or acted badly, then that person might change from wanting to help, to someone who’d walk on by, thinking that they’d be annoyed.
Guess who was invited to be at the induction ceremony?
ME! Yes, that’s right, me.
|A little while ago I realized that brooding over the past, that led to self-hatred, and not only was it hurtful, but I was a brutal hypocrite. I’d tell everyone who’d suffered an injury that all’s well, and so forth, but my brutal self-negativity was that I told myself all sort of bad things. It was on a trip to Florida that the realization hit, through the help of a 7-year old girl. She had no idea, and I didn’t ask, but it was how she was with me that made me realize how thins are. She didn’t know me before, because the crash happened when she was -3. I don’t remember what I’d said, but I remember the look in her eyes when I'd offered a ride on my scooter with me (pure joy), and how she made me feel. I won’t say it, because referring to myself as awesome would be self-centered, and egotistical. However, thinking it isn’t.
When I got back from that trip, the realization wasn’t short, because of what I’d put into motion. I’d contacted my cousin, who works for a big law firm (Kelly/Santini), who’d offered to be the go-between to her firm’s pro bono division. She did, and it was put into motion. The papers are being drawn up, it’ll take about a year I think, but when it’s up I’ll lead a charity. I’ve been working to think of its name, because “Brain Injury Awareness” is too plain, boring, or matter-of-fact that it might not get approved. My latest idea is “Brain Bang Aware”. I’m not sure if that’ll be it, but it has potential. It’s length is good for Instagram, Twitter, and its own domain.
|I've been invited to NHL's 2019 induction ceremony into the hall of fame! I'm going to take advantage of it by recording my exchanges with pro hockey players, about the invisibility-element of the injury, and hear their feedback on if they felt it.|
It will be aligned with how the charity will evolve. It's not set yet, but what I'm envisioning is a "push technology" centre, where it'll broadcast ideas/concepts about ABI's. At the interviews what I'll try to do is show that what's seen is quite often thought of as how a person is.
For example, I know people who appear to be unaffected, at all. When they make a mistake because of their injury, while it's not their fault, because they didn't mean to, but to everyone, they did it on-purpose.
Mats Sundin, Niklas Lidstrom, Guy Carbonneau, Dino Ciccarelli, Jayna Hefford, Igor Larionov, Larry Murphy, Hayley Wickenheiser, Sergei Zubov, Nik Antropov, Wendel Clark, Al Iafrate, Tomas Kaberle, Joe Kocur, Brian McCabe, Fredrik Modin, Brenden Morrow, Wade Redden, Stephane Richer, Jeremy Roenick, Ryan Smyth, Darryl Sydor, Steve Thomas, Marty Turco.
|I mean, holy cow. Take a read of the players who'll be participating. Because of a whole host of post-recording editing requirements, they're not ready to be broadcast yet, but when they are, you'll see awesomeness!|
A while ago, like 4 or 5 years, I simply couldn’t have a conversation at a dinner party with someone, because of the ambient noise, other people talking, and everything else that would distract me made it impossible. It was impossible because I couldn’t focus on what they were saying, such that while I heard the noise they were making, I simply couldn’t “assemble” it into a full-thought. However, how it made me feel made me determined to overcome. I know that “they” say that that’s something that’s either impossible, or too difficult to want to start.
I started with Soldiers of Fitness ten years ago, it ingrained in me the notion that quitting isn’t an option, and that I’m to go all the way, and then some. The concept of not succeeding wasn’t something that I thought possible, and I was determined to succeed. I didn’t get any pro-help, because I figured that they’d simply tell me that it’s impossible, and I shouldn’t even try.
As I’m typing this, I’m listening to the radio in my left ear. Not simply music, but hosted (KISS FM), so the hosts would come on, tell stories, and “talk” to me.
I was chatting with my son, Connor, and learned something pretty awesome. He joined the Air Force, but told me about his interview, and what he shared blew me away.
He said that, in his interview, he was asked about his biggest challenge. He’s faced several, but what he said that he’d replied with stopped me.
He said “When I joined the military they asked for a difficult challenge I had to overcome, and I said when you got in a accident the father I knew before the accident was gone from his (your) memory to the point where for sometime you needed to relearn about your past through others.”
I’ve faced challenges, of that there’s no doubt, but I’d never thought of it impacting others, not even my family.
Smileys exist for a reason, and I’d like to use one, because I’m smiling, just thinking about it.
Yes, the rain is challenging, but when you’re driving, you not only have windows, but a roof. But hey, in October to something like April, my air conditioning is better than awesome! And my heater, boy oh boy, is it ever awesome how it works in the May to September time frame.
I’ve had bad-stretches, I know that, but I’m trying to find ways of seeing the good side of things. I used to think that there wasn’t any, but that’s wrong, it’s just more of a challenge to find, and as my Foundation’s name says, I Never Stop.
If you knew me pre-crash, you’ve undoubtedly noticed that I’m a bit different (if you haven’t, is everything ok with you??). But seriously, things have changed, but when you see me, you’re likely wondering how the brain injury shows itself. That’s the interesting/scary aspect of a brain injury, because it’s more-often-than-not, invisible. I’ve cursed myself in the past, for what I’d lost (the week before the crash, I did a triathlon, the month before I biked to Kingston, and so on), but I’ve paid attention in the last few years, and realized something. What that is is that while being visibly-disabled is an obstacle, it’s vastly superior to what many people who’ve suffered one have.
And, from doing a search online, it’s clear that there’s a vast number of invisible-sufferers.
If you’ve a question, not just about my disability, I’ll try to address it. I’m planning a bi-monthly release, but I’m hoping to increase it to something like bi-weekly, or more.
Richmond is served by an awesome group of medical folks, of that there’s no question. However, where they operated from was a rental facility, owned and operated by a commercial venture, who decided on what’s available strictly on cost. The facility was “accessible”, but it met the minimum of access, but it wasn’t
as tenants in a building owned by not-doctors
|The entrance, up with two steps. Inside the front door was another rise, up four steps.|
|This is the view of the path, including the hill. In order to avoid the 4 stairs, I was required to go through the door, up the path, and ring a doorbell. I entered through the print-closet, with the printer and papers.|
|This is the pharmacy. Technically it's accessible, but while the door was powered, it opened and I was required to immediately turn 90 degrees to my right. Then, press a door-opener for the second door, that opened inwards.|
Two years ago they began construction on a new facility, that would be both owned, and operated by, the medical facility. And, not only would it be fully-accessible, but the drug store would also move in! It opened 8 months ago, it’s awesome, because they are!
|The building is where it is, and it's entirely theirs!
Not only is it accessible for me to walk in, but I can DRIVE in!
This is the doctor's offices.
|Not only can I get in to see my doctor, but also to the drug store!|
Disabilities, in general, are being noticed more, and solutions are being put forward. This new building solves two significant challenges, in a magnificent way.
What I’m asking for is your help. I’ve created these questions, about you, and I’d appreciate your answers!
Writing the blog is working in helping me to feel better about myself. However, when reading it, I realized that regardless of the value of what I’m writing, it’s only based on me, and by that, it’s entirely one-sided!
Yes, being disabled can be a challenge. While it started as something awful, so bad that I actually hated myself for a little while, but I don’t know what it was, but I changed my view. I was looking at the “old me”, and the fact that the “new me” wasn’t it, I felt a failure. The week before the crash, I did a triathlon. The month before, I biked to Kingston in The Rideau Lakes. I was a member of Soldiers of Fitness, a military-style boot camp for fitness, and because of it, I was able to. I completed 5 additional triathlons, and ran 4 or 5 half-marathons. I looked at what I became, comparing it to the former me, and hated it. Then, Never Stop was born.
I’ve slipped, more than once, in thinking bad things about myself, to the point where I downright hated myself. However, a friend said that when I get that way, that I’m effectively a hypocrite, by not practicing what I preach. But, the feelings of wanting (no, needing) succeed helped me to see the light. I didn’t know it at the time that I thought it, but in hindsight, that’s the power of my inside-drive. I still fight the inside-voice, often, that tells me that I’m either mostly useless, or something like that. It’s hard to fight, because it not only says it, but I feel it.
However, being visibly-disabled is definitely superior to invisible. A friend of mine, who suffered an injury, is able to qualify for a parking pass. He might forget where he’d parked his car, but he’d never use one alone, under any circumstances, because his injury is completely invisible. When I’m shopping, at any time, I’m offered help. If something is high up, and I’m looking at it, within a matter of seconds someone offers.