Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Live Life Loud!!!!

Hello my dearest Chickadees!!  I hope you'll all accept my sincerest apologies for the delay between posts; life got in the way!!! 

Things have been pretty demanding lately what with my impending return to university.  I'm talking stacks of reading, research and general prep.  As well as shouting at the completely inefficient admin staff who are so inept they couldn't organise a piss up in a brewery, let alone make sure an I.D card gets to its correct location. 

Last week also saw my exam results from last year finally being issued, all of which i passed no problemo, and am on track for a 2:1 but I'm gunna do my damnedest to push  it up to a 1st for final results time. 

Before all the uni chaos i headed off to Leeds Festival with the boyfriend to enjoy a days worth of punk rock, albeit, mainly from the safety of the 'disabled viewing platform' - which i have to say offered some damn good views!  The day itself was awesome, cold but awesome!  it showcased some of the finest acts from the UK and the states, including Limp Bizkit (the highlight of the day), headliners Blink182, All Time Low, Paramore (who frankly sucked) and youmeatsix amongst others. 

I'm looking forward to a few more gigs this year, the boyfriend is taking me to see Bowling For Soup as part of my birthday present, then we're going to see Good Charlotte early next year.  I'm hoping to go see Linkin Park too; possibly even 30 Seconds to Mars and A7X if i can find someone willing to accompany me (and nooo i'm not touting for offers, thanks anyway!)  

All in all Chickens, my point is this:  life's short, your a long time dead.  So live live to the max and seize the moment while the opportunity exists. 

Don't put off today because it can wait 'til tomorrow and avoid getting caught in a rut disguising itself as routine. 

Life is best lived happily.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Benefits. Really?

I'm sure we have all questioned from time to time who our benefit system really truly goes to help. We live in a society where the sick and disabled are given a meagre income that doesn't honestly reflect the costs of life. Yet each and every poxy penny has to be so meticulously applied for that you are left with that empty, hopeless, sinking feeling.

Has anybody noticed how recently 'public enemy number one' are those less able than others? Stealing, sponging, skiving, scum. That's what the news reporters seem to struggle to keep from tripping off their tongue. I'm beginning to think that the Cuntservatives and the Liberal Demotwats will soon order a mass genocide of 'disabled cleansing'. They're certainly stirring up enough nationwide hatred.

Do people really believe that those with disabilities WANT to be in the situation which they find themselves in? Do they not consider that most folk would much rather NOT be disabled in the first place? Most blind men aren't blind because they've gauged out their own eyes, so why do people think that those with faulty bones are in some way responsible for their fate??

Just think of all those horrendous duties which are involved in our 'selfish sponging'. Take the process of applying for DLA for example. Has anyone ever experienced a more demoralising, depressing and excruciatingly painful form of semi-public humiliation? Perhaps those quick to pass judgement should think hard about the whole ordeal- wherein you are made to think about every aspect of daily life which is impossible without 'mobility aids' or 'personal assistance.'

I wish sometimes that more people would understand what it's like to struggle with the many things which we do, to cry with desperation and frustration when you can't even pour a glass of milk, wash your hair or make a sandwich. Even having to think before going to the loo about your capability to wipe your own backside that day.

Would they really want to swap? I don't think so somehow. Are we really rolling in it, filthy rich and oh-so-lucky. Or do we just about get by?

Sunday, 1 August 2010

No, I’m the damn Slayer!

So you're probably wondering what an arthritic 23 year old can possibly have in common with the legend that is Buffy Anne Summers, Vampire Slayer.

You'd guess right to assume I'm not a karate ninja, I have never decapitated a stoner using a cymbal and I don't screw dead people. But actually our lives are quite alike. We both have to battle demons on a daily basis as a result of our birthright. Neither I, nor the Buff had a choice in this fate, mystical forces beyond human control decided that we should spend our teens longing to be 'normal'.

Also we share a resolute and stubborn sense of self. The words "it's not safe" or "wait for backup" mean nothing to us – WE are the ones who will make that decision. So many decisions have after all been taken away from our control already.

Another thing we have in common is the problem of our future. Our fates have already been decided for us, yet no one has given us the lowdown of what to expect. Buffy stands in hope that her 'expiry date' is a long one 'like a cheeto'. I hope my joints don't expire before I'm good and ready to have more bits replaced and fixed.

While she is a vampire slayer, I am the bionic woman.

Sometimes our foes will knock us down. They will hurt and bruise our bodies and souls. They may even make us doubt our own ability and strength. Yet we will rise from the chaos bloodied and tired but never broken, never ever beaten, always stronger, more powerful and with a better sense of how our enemy may be defeated.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Spasticus Autisticus

This Man should go down as world's most inspiring "raspberry ripple." Mr Ian Dury.

Having watched Sex, Drugs, Rock and Roll last night I was awed. Now he's not tormented by Arthur, but contracted Polio as a kid, so leg irons and weakling arms were his grumbling blocks. Except he didn't; grumble. He fought. One line in the film, which I assume was taken from the man himself was: "I don't want to be remembered, I want to live."
And that my dear Chickens is the purpose of this blog.
Live life to the max, you're a long time dead. There has been a lot on the news recently about the closure of local 'day centres''; or is that just polite talk for 'institution and isolation'. One young woman was interviewed last night; she had cerebral palsy and arthritis. She seemed like an intelligent gal, yet she was devastated that the closure of her beloved day centre meant she couldn't go to nightclubbing, bowling, or god-dammit even to the pictures like (and I quote) "normal young people." Without the club to take her there, organise the activities and group all the disableds together she can't partake in any of those activities. WHY THE HELL NOT?! I blame the mother. She'd made her dowdy and disabled – embracing the disability until it became her. All that the girl was truly lacking was a solid group of friends. Being disabled doesn't make you abnormal, just different. I wouldn't thank anyone for sending me to such a place. In fact, I would probably end up banned for telling the staff and other 'young un-ableds' to piss off!

Granted doing 'normal' activities in a 'normal' way takes a little more planning when your accompanied by Arthur on a night out than if you're baggage free. But I'm talking pre-booking taxis, knowing which bars you're going to and in what order; to make your walking distances as short as possible, knowing your limits and propping up the bar while your mates are dancing... Hell even wearing flat shoes! As for the bar technique, I've bagged many a bloke and free cocktail when my feet have decided to give up by assuming that manoeuvre! ;-)

They say "you're only as young as the woman you feel", well I say you're only as disabled as you believe you are.

I for one do not expect my nights out to begin with being picked up in a little yellow bus and taken somewhere to have organised 'fun' with people who are deemed to be 'like me'.
How do they know what I'm like?! I'm a hell raiser, a piss taker, a heartbreaker, and a punk rock princess with an attitude to kick their righteous asses all the way to the disabled bays!!!

Got that!?

Monday, 28 June 2010

More About Me

I feel that the time has come to let you all know more about me.

Before you ask, no, I'm not going to reveal my social security number to the world, or post any humiliating pictures, or tell you my true identity for that matter!

Instead I'm going to let you into a secret, one about the love of my life – Billie Joe Armstrong. (Of course I love my boyfriend very much too!) For those of you not familiar with the name, he's Green Day's supremely talented and oh so gorgeous front man, guitarist and singer. I used to be head over achy heels for Blink 182's Mr Tom DeLonge, only frankly, where BJ (yes, I am aware of the pun) has improved over time, DeLonge's beginning to look...well...a bit ratty.

When Billie declared on stage "SOMEBODY FUCK ME!!" I guess I was one in a very long queue of fans who would be happy to oblige. Even my extremely hetro boyfriend would have had to remind himself of his sexuality!

I'm not however one of these 'some-time-fan-girls', I've loved Green Day for nearly 10 years and Dookie goes down as one of my all time favourite albums. And they, like their music just get better with age.

For me, standing alongside 36000 other fans at LCCC earlier this month allowed me momentarily to forget Arthur. I thought-cheated on him with the sublime Mr Armstrong! Music can do that. If you love something so much, it can overcome you to such a degree that the point where you end and the music begins becomes intrinsically blurred.

My fetish for punk rock has presented itself in several ways over the years. From my love of big sturdy boots (as I've mentioned before, these have a practicality to them too), to having my ear (just the one) pierced more times than I can remember (the other has one modest single piecing), to my recent "quarter life crisis" of dying bits of my hair pink again – something which I did on a regular basis as a teen. I love anything which can make me feel different for the RIGHT reasons. I'm quite a girly girl, so I love nothing more than vamping up my DM's with a tiny little mini skirt.

Hell, I know I'm 23; I SHOULD begin to grow up and make myself sophisticated. But I don't want to. So much of me feels old that I want to look and behave as young as possible. And as for uni, I STILL don't know what I want to do when I grow up!!!

So roll on Leeds festival for more puck rock mayhem and madness!!!

Monday, 21 June 2010

What Does Disabled Look Like Exactly?!

Hands up everyone who has received the huge compliment "you don't look disabled." Yep. Most of you – thought so! I usually respond with a big smile and say "Thank You!" to the patronising, narrow-minded, blind-sighted git who made the remark.


Other idiots take it one step further: "you're not disabled." This has been said to me MANY times; respond with the exclamation: "I'M CURED!" and throw your arms around them in a huge embrace and they will be CONVINCED that there's something wrong with you – possibly in the head.


After a weekend in Manchester with the boyfriend to see the mighty Green Day I received an array of these unwelcome comments. While I'm pleased that I don't look like I've got a chronic debilitating disease, I also find it INFURIATING that people assume that a disability can be discovered with the aid of a quick onceover with their beady eyes. Seriously, what do they think we have doctors for when every Tom, Dick and Sally think they are qualified to make these judgements?


The worst I encountered was a stupid whore waitress, whom when asked "could you tell me where the disabled loos are please?" Responded by slowly looking me up and down, narrowing her eyes and remarking "for you?!" My temper wanted to exclaim – "No you stupid bitch. For my imaginary crippled friend lolling behind me in a wheelchair with no legs and one eye, which would clearly satisfy your idea of what it is to be disabled." I actually responded by calmly narrowing my eyes back at her and simply stating "Yes, for me." To this, she turned away and sniggered. She
actually sniggered!! Needless to say, we did NOT eat in San Carlos, Manchester.


To say I was enraged is to put it lightly. I actually wanted to smack the disgraceful bint.


It seems that anyone who hasn't come face to face with someone who has a disability assumes there has to be signs, indicators that we are worthy of using a toilet we can actually get up from unaided.


Other than my splint, which although I wear all the time I keep covered with arm warmers, there are no outward indicators of what's wrong with me. I'm too stubborn to use a wheelchair. I would rather drive and park close to where I'm going, or if I want a drink, pay for cabs several times a night. And I can't use walking sticks or crutches as my hands are so damn crap. I hold onto my boyfriends arm instead.


I think some people would like to see the Nazi idea reintroduced. Only instead of forcing Jews to wear stars all the time, they would like to see disabled folk brandished with big blue badges stating: "I AM GIMP".


No thanks.


I'd rather continue to have arguments every time I need a pee in a restaurant.


Next time someone gives me that kind of grief again, I plan to look them squarely in the eyes and say: "No, I'm lucky I don't look disabled. It must be so unfortunate for you that you do."

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Let’s Talk About SEX Baby!

Anyone who thinks a relationship with Arthur spells the death of sex is seriously mistaken.

Ok, so bedroom acrobatics are possibly off of the menu, and I wouldn't recommend taking the karma sutra too literally but you can still bounce with the best of 'em!

I'm guessing when your other half thinks of a threesome he's probably more likely to picture the two of you plus the oh-so-fine Holly Willoughby, or the uber sexy Megan Fox; but you, your man and Arthur can get along just fine.
The key is conversation.

And I don't mean giving your other half a list of "what hurts the most today", aim for; "I find it really sexy when you stand at the end of the bed and I put my ankles on your shoulders" as opposed to "not tonight dear, I can't go on top as my knees feel like they're made of mushy peas." Of course if the two of you find mushy peas a turn on I'm sure you could introduce them somewhere else along the way!!

There are also two very good reasons to keep 'up' with the passion even if you don't really fancy it. (And before my more mature readers start asking me about HRT (Eewww) I'm 23! And I'm not a doctor. Ask your GP about that!) For one, it's a fact that the sex related endorphins help to ease pain. So whatever pain is caused during the deed will most likely take care of itself. And two – it's the most enjoyable form of exercise that I can think of!!!

So sweat baby! Do it like they do on the discovery channel!

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Wednesday, 9 June 2010

One for the Guys


One of my male chickadees asked me why not write about how Arthur affects the guys. My response was : Well duh?! I'm not a guy, so how can I!?!

But after a moment's reflection, it got me thinking. Being involved with Arthur if you're a chick is bad enough, but for a dude?! Aside from the obvious homosexual gags I COULD make, it must be very emasculating at times. Times, for example, I've had to go back into a shop and ask the chap behind the counter to open my bottle of water. My other half would be mortified if he needed to do this.

It's called "Big Strong Man Syndrome" it's the same debilitating condition which not only prevents those with the Y chromosome from asking for help, but also directions


Then there's sex. I've never played with strap-ons, but you only have to watch to see that most positions are far more physically exerting for men than women, who are expected to be bendy, not thrusty!


I think men feel that it's more socially acceptable for women to be weak and helpless, but guys; well their macho default setting is giving them grief. And sometimes their mates are too.


Let's face it though guys, in some ways you have it easy. You can pee standing up, so no embarrassing tasks of having to ask the barmaid for the key to the disabled loo when you've drank one too many beers. You're not expected because of your gender to do the housework, cooking, cleaning, and ironing – to carry babies for 9 months then GIVE BIRTH.


Regardless of how down trodden and pissed off you guys might feel about sharing your bed with Arthur, try to remember, it does NOT define you. Now go away and think of three reasons why you're pretty damn fine – then tell me. Write it on my wall, PM me or leave a comment on here.


Go on! Do it!!!



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PS : More for the guys coming soon – don't worry dudes, you're not forgotten x x x

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Arthur and the Extra Bulk

One RA sufferer recently asked me how she can lose weight even though she can't move much. Well first off, I've seen the pictures and she has NOTHING to worry about, she's gawjus. Secondly, if I knew the answer, I'd be 8 and a half stone and have the body of Jennifer Aniston. And the boyfriend would be fetching my size 6's out of the loft (that's a 2 to you, my American friends).


Unfortunately, as I've got older I've got fatter. I'm now a 10-12 (6-8 USA) and feel squidgy with it. I have to admit, I've never really struggled with my weight per se. When I was 17 I couldn't launch myself over 7.7stone. Then I met the boyfriend – Hello Curry! Bonjour pizza, Mc D's, KFC's and all the other fatty goodness's! Let's just call him my downfall!


Six years and two and a bit stone later I'm not exactly ready to sew my mouth shut and declare chocolate celibacy but I would be happy to ditch a few pounds. The way I see it, I have three options:

  1. Starve
  2. Chop my head off
  3. Cut back on takeaways

Now none of these are especially appealing to me, but I think I'll 'plump' for 3. ('Scuse the pun!)


So in answer to your question, I'll let you know when I figure it out!!!


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Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Less "Wishy-washy" more "WOW! Hottie!"

Today I am going to explain why the occasional gothic tendencies are a must for any SGWA. And; I hasten to add, no you don’t need to go to any drastic length like dying your hair black or piercing your lip or getting a big ass tattoo. You simply need to work with what comes naturally.

If like me, you tend to become more than a little pasty (that’s pale to you, my American friends!) you’ll soon see why this works. It’s all too easy when you feel under the weather to tie your hair back, pull on a hoodie and try to fade into the background. These simple ideas will make you go from “wishy-washy” to “WOW! Hottie” (Even if you do feel like crawling under a rock for the next three years!)

Now here’s your shopping list:

*Kohl eyeliner in black

* Lash lengthening mascara, also black

* Lipstick – As red as you dare

* BIG BLACK BOOTS (We’re thinking, flat but daring statement boots here.)

Learn to work the boots and you’re half way there. We all know that high heels are all but impossible when Arthur’s behaving like a badly trained Jack Russell pup nipping at your ankles, but these boots won’t just look good, but they will hold you up and give you some much needed support too. At the same time they will help you away from being a shrinking violet and give you an image with attitude.

As for the makeup, so long as you don’t go so overboard that you wind up looking like a demented Bratz doll – load it up. If you’re too shy to go the whole hog with the lippy, concentrate on the eyes. IT’S ALL ABOUT THE EYES.

Throw on a pair of leggings and a little dress and you’re ready to rock!!!

Gothicism is my comfort blanket, give it a whirl – you might love it too!!!

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Monday, 31 May 2010

Arthur the Killjoy.

Ever feel that someone out there has got it in for you? No, I’m not talking about the kind of paranoia which makes you put extra bolts on your front door and cover your TV in tinfoil (I don’t think I could help you with that anyhow!). I mean the way that EVERY TIME I make plans to go out on the town some joint or other will swell up beyond all recognition.

Take tonight for example – I am supposed to be going out for a meal and a few drinks with the boyfriend, my friend and her husband and as if by magic, I woke up this morning with what looked like localized elephantiasis. My right knee has quadrupled in size.

As I’m sure all you chickadees can appreciate, I’m pretty pissed off! But the question is; do I let Arthur win? Do I sit in and let him make me watch crap TV and feel even more miffed ‘cause I know I’m missing out?


Instead I’m going to put on my glad rags, paint my nails and head on into the city. I’m not advocating alcoholism by any stretch  of the imagination, but an extra glass of wine or three will help the evening float along painlessly! Then again, I’m one of the lucky ones. ‘Hangover’ is not part of my vocabulary – unlike my poor boyfriend who has only got to have one sip too many and it’s hurl city!

Rule numero uno to be a smart girl with arthritis (we’ll call it SGWA for short):- Never EVER let Arthur stop you from doing exactly as you please.

'Til next time!!! ;-)

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Why, hello!

I’m sure it will show so I may as well tell you now, I’m a virgin. I have never blogged before! So here I am trying to lose that blogging cherry. I’m going to make it easy on myself though. I’m not going to try to be witty, or think of astoundingly clever things to say. No, I’m going to tell you a little about me and why I think you might find my humble blog of interest.

I’m 23 years old and I live in the city. I have a boyfriend. I’m and English student (well I will again be when i go back to Uni in October after my much needed year out!). I have arthritis.

Hence the year out – study and a hip replacement don’t exactly mesh!

The World Wide Web has somewhat failed me over the years. I’ve “googled” many questions, queries and concerns and got nowhere. No one out there wants to give a honest and open account of what it is to live with Arthritis, and consequently all you get is forums full of sixty-somethings whining about their “touch of rheumatism” and complaining that the doctors wont mend their creaky knee and it leaves you thinking; “what the hell! I’m only 23 – you’ve had your youth already, now GET OVER IT!” Now i know that sounds a little callous – a touch harsh. But come on! They complain about what they can’t do, while forgetting that some people have NEVER been able to do it. I have arthritis in every joint, and am rather disabled with it. BUT, and it’s a big BUT, my life, most of the time is pretty damn good. And i wanna tell all you good folk out there reading my blog about how ‘normal’ we can be – even if Arthur is being a right royal pain in the (insert joint name here). Sometimes I may not even mention him – other times I might feel like a good old rant. Feel free though to leave me any questions or comments, i might even decide to use the answer/response as the topic for my next blog!

‘Til next time!!! ;-)