Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Disabled but not Dead.

Remember watching a film some years ago that had a young woman who could not walk anymore in it.

At the time I could walk and had not conceived the idea that this could also happen to me, at the time I was not so sympathetic to the young woman’s plight.

Then I thought, surely if she wants to enough she will be able to walk again, as there did not seem to be any physical reason she could not walk.

I can’t remember what happened in the film, the only bit I recall is this beautiful young woman who could not walk.

Now I know of course that wanting something even wanting it enough does not make it happen.

I know this only too well as I am now totally 100% disabled, can’t even move a toe let alone my legs.

I really want so much to be mobile again, to feel my stomach muscles when I am walking or doing exercises.

Would so love to walk, brilliant to be able to move around, to be part of the movement of people everyday as they go to and from their work.

The ultimate dream wish is to be able to work again, as in this capitalist society you are only counted if you work.

Once you can not work it becomes very clear how handicapped people are regarded by society.

We are seen as useless because we can not contribute anymore to working life, that is a world that becomes closed to us.

It is a shame that society is organised as it is now because people are more than the job that they do.

I have never understood how the job that you do becomes the big definer of who you are.

Surely I have always been more than just the job I did?

We all are.

My dream now is for people to be valued for being themselves and for their personal qualities and not their job.

Think this would encourage people to explore the world around them more and to see their place in their communities.

They would be able to have the space to develop and value thinking and learning for the added value it gives their lives.

Everything is not a commodity that can be bought and sold as we are currently led to believe, no wonder that there is such a rise in crime figures as people try to snatch what they feel should be theirs.

No wonder people trafficking is on the increase right now and the precarious situation in many countries at war gives the people involved the freedom to carry on.

At the moment there is quite an increase in fatal stabbings in the UK, as a Criminologist I can see the links between the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and the increase of violent crime.

Just like Durkheim I can see those links, there is always a rise in property crimes when the class differences become even more obvious.

And there is always a rise in suicides when society is in transition and they usually trigger off a wave of copy cat suicides.

Funny how having done the Criminology degree and achieved the B.A (Bachelor of Arts) and then the M.A (Masters Degree) I realised that I did not want to work as a Criminologist.

Certainly did not want to work for the Police Service or the Prison Service as I do not think that either can help to stop people committing crime.

Both the Police Service as well as the Prison Service are there to punish people and to inflict retribution on the offenders.

Neither of these can deter people from committing crime, prisons just warehouse people that is all they can do.

Surely we as a society should by now have come up with a better way of treating people; we should operate from a different perspective than the one we currently use.

People are our most precious resource and should be nurtured and looked after not seen as a commercial product that can be bought and sold.

We tend to think that slavery does not exist anymore and ignore the evidence because it offends us.

We operate too much on the principle if we do not see it, then it can’t be happening and it is happening.

Just like I can not pretend that there is nothing wrong with me and I can do everything I used to be able to do.

It is blatantly obvious that I am not ok and that I will not be ok again either and to pretend anything else is just nonsense.

Just like saying prison works and stuffing the prisons so full of people that the budget is overstretched and there will have to be cuts in the services thatLocal Councils provide residents.

Some of the cuts in Council’s expenditure will affect the services for handicapped people such as mobility buses and lunch clubs and occupational therapy and many other services for the disabled.

So the opportunity cost of expanding the prison population will be at the expense of the handicapped.

We will see the few resources that are there for us will be removed and more disabled people will be left isolated in their homes.

That is not the world that I want to be part of, we need a world where everyone is accepted for themselves.

Where we can all participate in Community activities and where we can contribute to the Community.

I can never be the person I was physically b ut I can still contribute in other ways and so can other disabled people.

We are just like the name of Anne’s blog

We are Disabled and Not Dead.


MaryAnn Chick Whiteside said...

You have this great ability to reach inside my brain and heart and pull together the feelings I want to express and don't know how.

Thanks also for another round of great pix.

Anonymous said...

Hi Herrad:

Truer words were never spoken! You actually GET it (regarding title of my blog). I can't tell you how many people ask what my title means.

So thank you for putting some faces to it.

Very interesting about prisons and warehousing and retribution. None of it is going to make a great difference. I agree with you.

Great post.


JC said...

Paw Waving To You This Morning ^,,^

Just having my morning coffee and read your blog

I never did get a great job so after I had my kids, I didn't try to look for one. It wore me out .. I have a college degree and I still had trouble finding a job that paid more than I spent on clothes and bus fare ... if you know what I mean.

Now, I'm an older semi disabled lady and I define myself by my cats and dogs and listen to what others are doing.

Just a change in life style and of heart

Always enjoy reading your 'wisdom' and your 'words of insight'

Herrad said...

Hi Mary Ann,
Thanks for coming by glad and relieved you like todays post.
Was abit concerned how it would be received.

Hi Anne,
Glad you approve too, funny that other people are confused about nthe name of your blog.
I got it as soon as I saw the name.

Hi JC,
I am waving back at you, hope your coffee was enjoyable.
Know what you mean about jobs and not getting anything o match your degree, think it happens alot.

Thanks for coming by, really appreciate your visits and your comments.
Hope you all have a good day today.

Lucy said...

Herrad, you do have a way with words that truly expresses disabilities. People who have them are just as important as they were when they are able bodied. My son called me from Minneapolis and told me he had ms and his very next words were "don't worry mom, I will never be in a wheelchair." The elderly are also pushed into nursing homes that do not, can not because there is never enough staff do justice by these people. Where ever my son is I just want to be where he is when I die.

Herrad said...

Hi Lucy,
Hope you are here with us for a long time yet.
You are a gem I am very glad to have met you.
Take it easy and have a good afternboon/evening.

Ana said...

This is a great post!
I wish we could make a huge manifestation saying it to everybody.
I'm eager for some action.

Herrad said...

Hi Ana,
Thanks for your comment, I agree this should be communicated to more people.
We certainly need people to stand up for humanity, we all need each other.

Richie said...

If we were perusing the objective of the common good and using the principle of mutual aid we could end the waist of humanity. Every one is precious and we are all connected- we need a big turn round from this self harm consumerist madness- people eating themselves to death and other people starving- both aint happy! Both getting sick!
If we were not all "making money" but were involved in living our own lives we could build a world around peoples abilities and not on their ability to be exploited.
Modern mass prisons were built with the need to drive a free living peasantry into a disciplined working class. Now they don't need great chunks of that working class so they are locking them up indefinitely. What miss management of resources- if you want to see where your tax money goes take a look at the worst housing in your town- pick out the worst block- chances are this is where a huge whack of your money is being spent to lock up the products of this dystopia.
I would like to change things.

Herrad said...

Hi Richie,

Thanks for your comment, really wish people were seen as assets and not as negative equity.


Living Day to Day with Multiple Sclerosis said...

Hi Herrad!
I read your blog and want to comment on one thing you said.

"Once you can not work it becomes very clear how handicapped people are regarded by society.

We are seen as useless because we can not contribute anymore to working life, that is a world that becomes closed to us."

I personally want you to know that even before MS I never saw handicapped people as useless. I do nknow what you are talking about and so I will end this with... Yes, You may be disabled/handicapped but you are from from useless. You help so many people everyday with your blogs. You give us insight and hope. And I thank you for that.

Herrad said...

Hi Tara,
Thanks for coming by and thanks for your comment means alot to me.

Rae said...

Hi Herrad,
I am grateful for your post today. I needed to read it. It summed up how I have been feeling. I have been feeling like I am just a disability and not a person anymore. Thanks for reminding me that I have more to offer.

Herrad said...

Hi Rae,
Thanks for your comment, you have for sure got more to offer.
Hope you have a good day tomorrow.

Amelia said...

Hi Herrad,
thanks once again for stopping by and sending your words of comfort. It means so much to me & reminds me that I need to stop drowning in my own negativity & find the life ring and let it pull me up into the positive dry land again.
I knew MS was a complicated disease but that's just the tip of the iceberg, once you get to know it, you realise just how deep under water it goes & it's a struggle not to let it drag you down under the water.
Sending you & Richie much love & big hugs, you are both always in my thoughts & I love you both very much.
Stay strong as I know you will always do,
your friend always
Amelia XxXxX
Take care &

Nancy said...

You just did. You just contributed. Very well said.

Herrad said...

Hi Amelia,
Thanks for your comment.
Please be very gentle with yourself, this shitty MS is a terribly high learning curve abit too high.
Take care and have a good a day as possible.

Hi Nancy,
Thanks for your comment.

Thanks both of you for coming by, hope you both have a good day.