I am aware that my recent blog entries have been somewhat on the serious side and so I have decided to take a leaf out of the wonderful Shane Burcaw’s book and ‘laugh at my nightmare’! (LAMN link).
I have decided to write a list of the 6 weirdest things that I do in order to deal with the effects of my disability. I don’t mean things like ‘drinking through straws using a lidded beaker to prevent spills’, or ‘having people cut my food for me because if I try it is likely to end up on the floor’.I mean 6 things that might be unique things that I do. I will be interested to hear from anyone that can relate!
1. I like popcorn. It is low on the glycaemic index which makes it a good little snack food for a diabetic. I don’t want plain popcorn, that just tastes like little balls of cardboard. Sweetened popcorn is nice but probably has more sugar than a diabetic is supposed to consume. Salted popcorn is ok but the aftertaste of a salt overload is minging! So I compromise with half my portion salted and half sweet, all ready mixed. When I want some my Mum will put my portion in a bowl and hand it to me. And now is my problem. How do I get the lovely popcorn snacks from the bowl, to my mouth? Picking the kernels out by hand is not an option as due to the worsening dexterity of my fingers most of it is likely end up on the floor. Likewise, if I try to use cutlery and also popcorn doesn’t fit through a straw!! So my solution = face plant the bowl because popcorn will stick to your tongue! I can also achieve minimal spillage using this method! #UnafraidToLookStupid .
2. I buy my trousers two sizes too big. #LookingGoodIsFeelingGood . It is true that if I could stand then my trousers (currently lounge pants) would drop to the floor. I don’t just do this to boost my ego and make me feel skinnier, no, I have three very valid reasons:
a. I have a big butt because I sit on it all day and having larger waisted trousers makes it easier for my carers to dress me.
b. Being sat down all days means that I am at risk of pressure sores, having my trousers a little bigger reduces this risk and is, well sure, just more comfortable!
c. Being diabetic I have three to four injections of insulin every day, the majority of which go into my thighs or stomach. Having a ‘roomy’ waist on my trousers means that these areas can be accessed easily.
Being ‘this’ disabled and needing ‘this’ much help means that I do not have a lot of control/choice over the basic functioning of my life.· I get dressed at the time my care agency sends carers.
· I have a shower on the days that social services have pre-approved.
· I have tea to drink and food to eat because my mum is kind enough to prepare for me. (not that she would deny me if I asked, she’s too nice!)
· Etc. etc. etc. etc.…
So how do I cope with this in a perfectly healthy, non-harmful way? I exercise my control muscle over all the stuff that I can, even if it seems stupid to others it is actually very important to me. It even helps me keep my frustrations in check. (side-note: some people may argue that it doesn’t work and I am still a mardy b****, but I have a lot to deal with ok!! Besides, trust me, I would be worse without it!)
Okay I know I have repeatedly mentioned in my previous blog entries about my obsession with my google calendar, some see it as weird, I view it as practical. In my experience one of the best ways for me to deal, on a daily basis, is to claw as much control over my life as humanly possible. So my next few weird things have to do with my freaky control issues (I am aware that they annoy people). So as well as the calendar obsession, I confess to doing the following things:
3. Planning every outing down to the last detail so I know about timing, access, disabled toilets etc. sometimes even producing a detailed itinerary complete with emergency contacts and possible contingency plans #AlwaysBePrepared .
4. Feeling the need to be early to everything, which sometimes means that I am early by an hour or even more #AlwaysBringABook .
5. Keeping my DVD collection (over 200) in alphabetical order, complete with an alphabetised register #AlwaysBeOrganised .
6. Buying a label maker and labelling my plastic beakers so that I always have the same drink in the same beaker thus avoiding, in my head, contamination (e.g. one for tea, one for water, one for orange…). Ok that one is arguably quite weird and I can’t really defend it!! #AlwaysBeHygienic .
So, in conclusion, stay sane by being weird.