Saturday, 25 April 2015

She's (not) in Fashion!

Some of my pet hates, - (I have several), are beauty standards, and the 'fashion' industry.

I mean, please! Who the hell has any right to decide what's beautiful and what's not, - or what's 'in' and what's not?!

Who died and made fashion designers arbiters of good taste?!

Half the things that are so called 'fashionable', I wouldn't be seen dead in! How dare anybody tell me what I should and shouldn't be wearing?!

It's what's on the inside of a person that counts, not what they look like, or which 'designer label' they are wearing.

If you're anything like me, though, you'll probably end up spilling orange juice or cake down it, on its second outing!
Having said that, if it really makes you feel better to spend a fortune on a piece of clothing that will be 'out of date' in twelve months, then do it.

The fashion industry often makes people feel that they have to be a certain weight, or look a certain way, to be considered 'attractive' or 'good enough', and that's rubbish!

Being 'attractive' is as about confidence, I think, as much as anything else. Once you've come to terms with who you are, and you 'own' your imperfections and faults, what people see, matters less. It's about being comfortable in your own skin.

I won't pretend to be the most confident person in the world, I'm not. There are times when I'm plagued by self doubt, but it's been a fair while since that extended to how I look. Now, I just accept that there are some things about myself I can't change, - but it took me a very long time to get here.

Having a disability - (I have Cerebral Palsy), immediately makes you different, (at least in a lot of people's eyes). I wasn't meant to 'fit in', and maybe to a certain extent, that has helped me. It's easier to follow your own path -when you're on a different one to start with!

I'm not saying it's easy. When I was a teenager, I worried terribly about my weight, and then again in my early twenties, and I'd be lying if I told you, that I'm completely free of that, but the only reason I worry about my weight now, is a practical one, not emotional.

If I put on too much weight, my mobility will become even more restricted than it is already. My hips and knees will need replacing, at a much earlier stage than I'm ready for.

I know those operations will have to happen sooner or later,due to 'wear and tear' that goes with Cerebral Palsy, but I've spent enough time in hospital to know that I will do anything I can, to avoid going back there, too soon!

As a teenager too, I had all the teenage angst, - 'will anybody ever want me'? 'Oooh, I really hate my hair' - and that was compounded by the worry, that boys (and later, men) wouldn't be able to see past the disability, and just see me.

Disability is a lot to come to terms with, and it's even harder, when you're battling depression, and you've got all the teenage hormones, flying through your system.I won't pretend I've entirely come to terms with my disability, and the limitations placed on my life, either, but I'm further along that road, than I ever thought I would be.

I know who I am now, and maybe that's why I don't feel the need to worry about make -up or fashion.

It's not that I don't take pride in my appearance. I love shopping for brightly coloured tunic tops. I feel comfortable and relaxed in those, and that's my point.You don't need to be governed by what society tells you is 'attractive', 'fashionable' or will give you a certain 'status'. You just have to learn to accept yourself, and wear what makes you feel good.

If that IS keeping up to date with the latest fashion, wearing expensive make -up,and having a 'designer' handbag, go for it, but what I'm saying is, it doesn't have to be!

You have nothing to prove to anyone else. Not your friends, not your family, and definitely not 'society!'

Fashion is fleeting, and so is life. Do what makes you happy inside, and makes you glad to wake up every morning.

Don't spend your time worrying about what the people think of you, because they won't remember what you were wearing, or how you looked, but they will remember, who you are!


(Image: 'Pinterest)   

Friday, 24 April 2015

Things/People I am Avoiding - (A Bit of Fun, or is it)?

 A bit of fun. Written to relieve the ever building (pre election)  tension that is building in me, and most other campaigners.
My personal list of things, and people I intend to avoid, for at least the next month, or several! 

It is based on my opinions only, and not meant to cause offence!

I will be avoiding:

Polling reports (if you read them, please remember to look into who funded them, before you believe what they tell you).

Party Political Broadcasts

Jeremy Clarkson

Anything to do with the royal baby. I am really NOT interested...


Election Leaflets

People who shout 'vote Tory/UKIP/Labour' at me. (I will vote for who I like thank you, and you just sound desperate)!

Iain Duncan Smith/David Cameron - because I can't handle any more lies, and spin. All I can think about when I see them, is the anxiety,pain, and death their policies have inflicted on disabled people.

A certain Deputy Prime Minister (who thinks appearing on 'The Last Leg' will help him appeal to voters! -BULLSHIT BUTTON)!

It won't help. People don't trust you, or your party, and we also know that despite what you claim, your party has not 'protected disabled people from cuts'. Your party voted them IN! 

Boris Johnson - (If he ever gets anywhere number ten, I'm leaving the country)!

People who say 'I don't get it! What's wrong with this government, exactly'? - (I haven't got a spare TEN YEARS to tell you, and if you don't know already, you clearly don't know me well enough to be asking)!

Mainstream media political 'debates' (because they aren't 'debates' - I think the questions are chosen, as is the audience, so fair and balanced, they are NOT)!

- In short, I am 'electioned out', and have a horrible feeling that nothing is going to change.
I am considering undertaking some sort of hibernation, or cryogenic freezing, until the world is a better place to be. xx


Wednesday, 22 April 2015

The Power of My Pen - (AKA 'Me, to a Tea)'

I get angry when characters don’t work,
Wasted time drives this writer berserk!
More screwed up paper is tossed in the bin
Frustration is the demon within!

I’m working hard here to make you all laugh,
Send IDS, and I might have to barf!
I’ll tell you loudly that Cameron’s an ass,
Might even sing if you fill up my glass!

Save yourselves please and don’t mention ‘The Clegg’
I’ll start on betrayal and ‘pulling of legs’!
Spare me his face, I’m not in the mood,
If Cameron’s there too then I’ll be really rude!

They can go sit in those ivory towers
While the people below them struggle for hours!
Disability came and it robbed our choices
Now they trample on us and don’t hear our voices!

Where was I? Oh yes, with my paper and pen
Just for a minute I got distracted then!
You tell me breathe deeply and try to stay calm,
I’m afraid I won’t do that, while people do harm.

You see I can’t stop caring and won’t stop sharing,
Like I’m bothered if you don’t agree!
If I just sip my cup, keep my mouth shut and give up
Then I’d be betraying me.

So what? I don’t walk well and I can’t have a job,
But don’t think I will sit here, be docile, and sob!
Offer me tea and find you needn’t ask twice,
If you give me chocolate, I’ll be really nice!

Just for a second while I cave to the rush,
Don’t think my resistance will ever be crushed!
Wait one moment, I’m distracted again
But never underestimate the power of my pen...


Friday, 10 April 2015

What I'm Feeling Now, and a Plea...

'As long as you've tried your best, that's all anyone can ask of you'

- and I have, but I hate feeling, that the next four weeks, and then the next five years, are (to a degree) out of our hands, - and in the hands of people who might have little idea of what's happening to disabled people.

The anxiety is beginning to get to me, again and there are knots in my stomach.

I wish I could make people (who don't want to), see that we're dying in our thousands, and we'll go on dying, if things don't change.

I'll go on having to talk people out of suicide, ringing the police, and just hoping against hope, that they get there in time.

I'll go on writing about what I'm scared of, in the hope that someone might take notice, when they didn't before, - but what if they don't?!

What if everything we've seen happen, and tried our best to raise awareness of, means nothing?!

How are we supposed to do this, (at this level), for another five years?! I dread it, but I'll do it, if I've got to.

Campaigning, before this government, was so different.

It was making sure that we had access and support, and pushing for a more equal place in society, and helping to spread positivity about disabled people.

We didn't know when we were well off!

I would give anything to have the days when writing an email, letter, or making a phone call, was enough to get things moving.

Now it's about saving lives, unfair sanctions, foodbanks, and desperation of people who have been left with next to nothing, and barely got the energy to fight back!

It's about sharing information, and then doubting it, thinking 'wait a minute, - is that right'? 'Have they changed it behind our backs'?! What the hell are they going to do to  us, next?!

If you'd told me when I started 'campaigning' (as a little eight year old), that nearly twenty six years later, disabled people would be in a worse situation, than we were, I wouldn't have believed you.

I know I've said it over and over, but with the election four weeks away, (at the time of writing), it needs to be said again...and again.

Disabled people are frightened, actually, maybe terrified, is a better word. Terrified of  losing vital benefits, support, independence, dignity, and self -respect. I actually have nightmares about having to face the 'Work Compatibility Assessment. I wake up sweating, and tense.

As a person with Cerebral Palsy, (I cannot walk, or stand unaided), anything that makes body tense, will add to my pain, and that's exactly what the nightmares, and anxiety do.

We shouldn't be living like this. Scared in our own homes - having nightmares, and jumping at the sound of the letter box, in case it's an ATOS/Maximus appointment, where we have to go and justify our right to basics, and seemingly, a right to a life.

All we want, all I want, is a chance to live my life the best way I can, despite its limitations, constant pain and tiredness. I want to feel secure again, and sleep soundly. I want to feel valued in society, and not like I am an unworthy burden.

It has hurt me badly (and made my depression worse) to be labelled a 'Scrounger', and vilified in the eyes of society, by government, and the media.

I am a person. WE are people! We have thoughts, ideas, and feelings, just like everyone else! We are not just numbers on a page, and our lives are hard enough already!  I am not a 'scrounger'. I am a wife, a daughter, a sister! I am Helen!

Independence and dignity are precious things. They become even more precious, when you are disabled or ill, because you have so little of it!

With a further twelve billion pounds of social security cuts planned, if the government wins the election, all of those things we hold so dear, (and that the able-bodied seem to take for granted), will further disappear, for us.

The anxiety and fear, we already feel about having to face the (unfair and discriminatory) 'Work Compatibility Assessment', is being further added to, by not knowing where the axe will fall, if this government get re-elected.

I want this to stop, more than anything else in the world. I don't want to feel frightened any more.

You have the chance (in May) to vote this government out.

Please, for the sake of every disabled person that has died, and for every one of us that are suffering please, take it, because we can't take another five years, of pain.


Sunday, 5 April 2015

Dear Mr Cameron

Dear Mr Cameron,

Using your (dead) disabled child, to score political points, is disgusting, and the fact that your government has inflicted untold misery,pain, and DEATH on disabled people, for the last five years, makes it doubly sick!

You are a vile, despicable, heartless, out of touch, slimy, arrogant, excuse for a human being, and I LOATHE YOU!

Anybody who votes for a man like you, heading a party, with such a cruel, and callous agenda, needs their head read!

You have destroyed the lives of thousands of disabled people, and what is even more concerning is that you have vilified us, in the eyes of society, by labelling us as 'scroungers'.
You have no idea how damaging and hurtful that is. It has eroded self esteem, and dented any confidence, I was building up!

My Cerebral Palsy is not a choice. Any form of disability, or illness, is not a choice, yet we are being punished by your government for being disabled! I did not choose to be in pain. and tired. I did not choose not to be able to walk or stand, unaided. I would give anything to change it, but I can't! 

Your government has made my life harder, and I feel that I have to justify my existence. My anxiety and depression has been made worse, by government (and media), use of 'scrounger' rhetoric, and I want it to stop. Please. 

I'm sick of feeling frightened.

Disabled and ill people just want to live as 'normal' a life as we can, have independence,dignity, security. and self respect. We used to be seen as people, but I don't feel we are now. You have taken that from us!

You have closed the Independent Living Fund, leaving thousands of people without treasured independence. and support. Cuts to services have been equally damaging.Fear of the Work Compatibility Assessment, gives me nightmares, and I jump at the sound of the letterbox, -just in case it's my turn.

Your cuts to vital social security, has lead to devastation and death, for thousands of us, and there can be no justifiable excuse for that, EVER!No one, should be living in fear, at the hands of their government Disabled and ill people deserve better.

Yours sincerely



*This is my opinion and what I believe to be true, at the time of writing