Being Body confident and comfortable with your disability

typewriter-peach-2Guys and dolls! Hope your having a great summer! (I’m already on vacation.) A small thought that’s been niggling at me for a while; I’m not body confident. Now being 6ST 81bs people tell me ‘your not fat, you’ve got a lovely figure!’ Which is nice but I don’t see it that way. Now because I sit down my stomach is sort of ‘crushed’ making it look bigger than what it actually is which makes me feel bigger than what I am. However when I lie horizontally it looks normal, but off course we can’t lie down all the time right? Like it makes me not want to wear bikini tops or shorts because of course, your thighs expand when you sit down. I just wondered if anyone felt the same? Also I hate my legs because when I stand up or sit down they turn inwards! I’m also not fond of my cp toes either because they look rank and I can’t wear flip flops. Nor, can I wear heels because my feet don’t bend (unless I have an operation to correct them, which means only one foot can be done one at a time making it painful!!) I don’t really like my ‘cp hands’ either. In one of my mums wedding photos I’m hugging her and my hand is on her shoulder but again sort of curved inwards and stiff. I think there’s a lot of pressure on this generation to look a certain way. For example, I feel different to the other girls at school because I don’t wear makeup. It takes a lot of time to do it and concentration so I don’t have time to do it before I go to school unless my mum does it and I don’t like asking her to do it everyday because she’s got stuff to do, ya know? She ain’t got time to make look like Cara Delgvine. But don’t get me wrong there’s stuff I love about myself such as my eyes and dimples. I know I preach personality shines the brightest but sometimes it won’t if you look self conscious. Now I ain’t about to embark on no crazy juice diet. I just need to know someone else shares the same securities I do. Can anyone share any tips on being body confident and having disability? Keep calm, keep laughing, be happy, don’t stop fighting you can do it!!


A Poem Reflecting Grief.

So yesterday’s task was to write a poem reflecting grief and loss. So, here’s mine:

As a toss the lilies on the earth

And say goodbye to you, I think what what life is worth without you. The world seems silent without your laugh, the stars dimmer.

A part of me went with you,

My heart is split in two, I place one half with you.

I wept for what we had and what we would have had. But this I cannot change. 

I haven’t changed our answer phone as to me you’re not gone.

I boil with anger at why the world hasn’t stopped for you. The colours seem too bright now, the world is at peace whilst I cry.

To me, the light has gone and to me that’s how I want it to stay because the darkness doesn’t betray to others how at a loss I am.

Until you light my way, I want move on until you give me a sign. The old me has died too.

Ultimately I’m too scared to be reborn in a world without you.

“Who wants to become a writer? And why? Because it’s the answer to everything. … It’s the streaming reason for living. To note, to pin down, to build up, to create, to be astonished at nothing, to cherish the oddities, to let nothing go down the drain, to make something, to make a great flower out of life, even if it’s a cactus.”

—Enid Bagnold

Disability and Education: A summary

Hello and welcome!

Today I’m going to talk about disability and education which are in effect oil and water. My mum tells me I can do anything I set my mind too and then I have teachers saying ‘no you can’t because of your disability.’ I have encountered this three times in my life, the first time being when my parents fought for me to be in mainstream education. Don’t get me wrong 80% of my education was great and the teachers were really encouraging. I joined every after-school club I could including school productions where my music department made a ramp so that I could perform on stage.

But then there’s the 20%. I once had a drama teacher tell me whilst studying A levels that she couldn’t see the point in me doing the course because of my ‘limitations and that you won’t receive high marks’. For someone who dreams of being on stage that was a devastating blow and that triggered my depression, I felt lost and had no idea what I was going to do with my life. At school, I also was restricted to using the bathroom twice a day because of staff who were trained were cut. I also wasn’t allowed off campus because it was deemed ‘unsafe’ I couldn’t go above ground during break or lunch due to evacuation issues and this one support worker decided she didn’t like that I was so vocal and was told to ‘stop whining’ and that I was too independent! So I left in 2015, I felt I was like a cigarette butt being constantly grinding on the pavement. I even had to campaign for better wheelchair access when I was fifteen in my own school!

The second time would be at a university where I was told by someone who barely knew me that I had ‘unrealistic expectations of my abilities’ and in the end, they put so many barriers in place and lectures going above me straight to the disabilities office instead of speaking to me first, I had to leave. It annoyed me that I was infantilised that I felt I couldn’t breathe without being watched to see if I’d fuck up. It was over silly things like, not having a button by your bed so you can open your bedroom door and leave your housemates in once you were in bed, the note taker shouldn’t be picking up pens for me, students couldn’t hold doors open for me, the fact that my chair didn’t fit under the lecture tables or I was tired in lectures and carried too many bags. Just utterly stupid and isolating.

Why isn’t there a perspective of a disabled university student when you apply? It should only be fair.

Why aren’t disabled people being seen as intellectual individuals? I hope by me speaking out about this helps someone in the future and improves the education situation.

So because of all this, I now have to start an online degree and also look for a job and my own home just so I can be seen as an individual adult.

Please feel free to get in touch if you had similar experiences I’d like to see whether this is just one isolated incident or, a common problem.

Love Rachel.