Monday, March 16, 2015

Redefining My Place in the World

 The recent donation of 800 copies of my memoir to the registered breast cancer survivors who attended the Lady Lion Pink Zone Basetball Game on March 1, 2015 brought home the familiar saying, "It is more blessed to give than to receive."  For the first time, I experienced in some small way, how just my desire to give an expression of hope inspired others to do likewise.  Many joined in helping to raise $2400 in 4 months to make such a gift possible.  As a result, I received my first donation from a business to support this effort.  I believe there will be other such efforts that will bring people together.

Like it or not, the world is in a state of transition and some things once thought to be constant are no longer recognizable. Those who cannot adapt are going to have a very difficult time.  Perhaps even their survival will be at risk.  Some will make it through this tumultuous time while others will not see the "dust settle."  As I  write this, I am not so concerned about myself or even others who are disabled for this ambiguity is no stranger to our lives.  It's the able-bodied, especially those who believe they are financially secure, their reationships stable and they know their place in society.  These are the people, I feel, are in for a "rude awakening".

For those of us with medically diagnosed disabilities there seems to be a reversal of control over our own decision making  At least that is my current experience.  There is a "tug of war" between what is needed to live as indsependently as we are able and what the government will fund.  Also the racial disparity in terms of medical services and home based care services has dramatically increased.  This is also true of Elders living in community.  I  applaud President Obama for his heartfelt  desire in implimenting Obamacare.  However, in my opinion and many with whom I converse, there was no requirement for healthcare professionals and home based care agencies to accept any insurance.  This has left those who most need these services in a very precarious and sometimes life threatening situations.  Anyone with the funds can now start their own Home Based Care Agency with very little, if any, training necessary!.
Having lived independently for almost 40  years with a little help from friends, I extracated myself from an almost instutional mentality from managers and caregivers who had never seen some one with severe cerebral palsy except in a "medical facility"  After hearing this from almost every service coordinator, none of whom had any training in the field of disability, I returned once again to living as I had since college.  In these last 4  years, I have finally been allowed a glimpse of what my life probably would have been like without the ongoing support of family, close friends and my church who continue  to believe in me.  The focus I stress on this blog, by example and in my life is to encourage other women and the men who care for us to support our choices and help us to live safely in an ever changing world.


  1. Hi Annie,

    My name is Gina. We met last night on the street while listening to Eric Ian Farmer. I just wanted to tell you what a pleasure it was to meet you and to talk with you last night. It meant a lot to me. You are a beautiful and inspiring woman. Thank you for the words of encouragement regarding my mother. She is recovering a little bit each day, but it will be a slow and steady process. We are not a family of patience, so each day that she does not jump up out of her hospital bed and tap dance and sing is an emotional battle in our hearts. But we also know that she is getting excellent rehabilitation care and God is watching over her. I struggle with the guilt I feel as I mourn the loss of the mom I had only a few weeks ago (my best friend), but realizing I should be more optimistic about her recovery.

    I look forward to reading your book and learning more about your life journey. I'm in the education field as well -- I'm a high school teacher: 9th grade World History.

    Thank you again, Annie. And thank you for the warm hug! Xoxo.

    ~ Gina Thompson

  2. I am grateful that I was able to offer some encouragement to you. Keep looking forward and deal with each day as it comes.