Saturday, January 5, 2019

How my disability affects my work


God bless you. You tell me to be a man. I've had to relearn twice. I've had to relearn breathing and swallowing water. I'm comfortable with who I am. And it takes a lot to go through so much and still have hope. Bless you for saying that.
Remember: Just because a disability or injury is not visible, does not mean it doesn’t exist. These limitations won’t stop me now. I understand if there are a few things that my disability causes me to be excluded from. Admittedly, I have a very different disability from others. The desire to do everything well and with respect is there. I will continue to move forward, challenging my comfort zone and stepping into new experiences with confidence and enthusiasm.
I have had to relearn how to walk a couple of times. In a lot of ways, I’m still relearning how to walk. Because of the severe injury I had, muscular atrophy, nerve damage and a bad back. I’m absolutely not complaining. I’m doing the best I can and I think I am doing pretty well. I just want people to know that I am not stumbling because I am drunk or because I am trying to chase you. I’m not. J
I think a lot of people still view me as the man I used to be. Most of the things I used to do, the bad things, the stealing, the lying, the pornography and hurting myself, the symptoms, I haven’t done for years. I can’t tell you how painful, how incredibly shaming and stressful it is to continually have to defend the way I was – most of which happened when I was a child, mind you – when that life was suffering so much. Don’t deny people’s ability to change. Let me say that again: I was a child. When a child does these sort of things, it is a blatant indication that something else is happening. Children are not born bad. My sexuality is pretty shamed and damaged. When the truth comes out, things will make a lot more sense than they do now, today. I suppose I cannot blame you for how you are reacting. I’m just saying, I’ve been very open with my life, faults and all. Even down to my medical history and finances. When the truth comes out…
I just became too overwhelmed to cope with what was happening to me and the responsibilities of a job. Now, I believe I have something to offer. Please remember, I was taught this shame. It’s nothing about my character. I suppose I could have tried harder. I suppose I could have gotten a job. I am not lazy though. I’ve written five books and create art every week. There are probably a few people who think I don’t know what hard work is. To these people, I ask, have you ever had to relearn to breathe? To swallow? To walk? I don’t mean this as a spiteful comment. Simply to display that while others have been working to make money, I have been working to keep alive. And the relearning/coping process did not stop after that injury. Although, of course, I am not denying and am grateful for the incredible amount of hard work a lot of people put towards their jobs to support families. We just know work in different ways. Changes are coming. Everyone has been through so much. Regardless of your religion, race or history, we all hurt in the same way. Though our reactions differ and greatly do they differ, we were all children at one point, longing for our mothers to hold us and comfort us. We need to empathize with our brother. Remember where much of my money went. To people on the street. A lot to charity. A lot to friends in need.” My disability affects everything about my being. I had a severe brain injury. Still, I have written four books, paint, draw and am working diligently to start my business.
I called Amazon again to see about my book, which seems to be being sold still without my permission. I fell into a publishing scam some time ago. I first published in 2012 and purchased a marketing campaign from them for 5500$. Five years later, I have not received a penny from the publisher for any sales. The funny thing is that I know there were sales. Day-light robbery. During the marketing campaign, while that was going on, I checked in with amazon.com and the beneficiary accounts, which were paid by the sale of my books were not in my name. Anyways, third party sellers seem to be still selling copies of the book on amazon. There was little, understandably, that Amazon could do. I’ve gone through copyright infringement with amazon in the past with little success. The original links were taken down as a result of that, but new ones were up within a week. Seems to be a very bad publishing company. Self-publishing is quite the racket. I just wish you could see how deeply overwhelming all of this is. My past. My past. And that I am still being taken advantage of in so many ways. It has sapped the energy from me. Let the ideas that I have be for the good of mankind. Please. Some credit would be nice. But at the end of the day, I recognize that any ideas I have belong to the world, from the Spirit. But these people are stealing my story and my works. I know God will reward me with even more than what I have lost. “The LORD blessed the latter part of Job’s life more than the former.” But that hardly serves as an excuse. And truth itself will justify truth about a lot of my ideas. Anyways, what I am trying to say is that over the past couple of sessions with my spiritual counselor, he has encouraged me that I have two choices about that. 1. That I choose to fight for my intellectual property. 2. To let it go. Not necessarily for the purposes of letting something so re-victimizing (if not flat out victimizing) go. But for the purpose of beginning new projects. While I gain strength and faith from moving forward as opposed to getting stuck in the past. I am going to write another book. I see how valuable it is to have this medium through which to communicate my thoughts and ideas with others. But I am starting to think of using my VPN. In any case, God bless them and their hearts. Hope it was worth it. J
‘I am applying for disability right now. Going through the application, I am just realizing the myriad of problems caused by my emotional injuries, my severe PTSD. Or the physical problems caused by my injury. Like the severe physical and mental fatigue. I am grateful still.’ A lot of good people who need this service. Don’t be jaded by a few. There is still misunderstanding about emotional injury and mental illness. We need to have compassion. I am going to look for work. I have been looking for work. Darkness is growing in the world, as well as our reaction to it.
Now, I believe I have something to offer. Please remember, I was taught this shame. It’s nothing about my character. I suppose I could have tried harder. I suppose I could have gotten a job. I am not lazy though. I’ve written four books and create art every week. There are probably a few people who think I don’t know what hard work is. To these people, I ask, have you ever had to relearn to breathe? To swallow? To walk? I don’t mean this as a spiteful comment. Simply to display that while others have been working to make money, I have been working to keep alive. And the relearning/coping process did not stop after that injury. Although, of course, I am not denying and am grateful for the incredible amount of hard work a lot of people put towards their jobs to support families. We just know work in different ways. Changes are coming. Everyone has been through so much. Regardless of your religion, race or history, we all hurt in the same way. Though our reactions differ and greatly do they differ, we were all children at one point, longing for our mothers to hold us and comfort us. We need to empathize with our brother. Remember where much of my money went. To people on the street.”
This is an essential service.
Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. As well as the injury.
A lot of good people who need this service. Don’t be jaded by a few.
I have written four novels. I’ve made in total about ten dollars from sales. 5500$ in the hole from a marketing scam. Who knows how much lost in sales? The money doesn’t matter.
I’m just wondering, why punish someone who is applying to a disability benefit who has had a disability before the age since he would have been able to work? It’s like I’ve had severe MS since I was 15 plus serious emotional injuries…
I wish you could see how frustrated I get with a body that doesn’t work properly and a mind that is fatigued and weighed down by trauma. I am fighting so hard to keep them healthy. Most of the time, when I am having such a hard time expressing or identifying my feelings, emotions and the thoughts connected to them, I will just say ‘I am tired’. Most of the time, there is so much more than just that going on. Most of the time, this is a period of heavy stress for me. I learned in college to label my unresponsiveness or extreme physical difficulty or unclear thinking simply as ‘I am tired’. Because this meant that no one would ask questions. And because, especially at that time, I had no effective way to understand what I was feeling and why I was feeling it, simply saying I was tired was an effective way to close a conversation that I didn’t know how to have. My feelings and emotions were just so haywire that I had no way to process them or express them. Physical exhaustion often triggered this and left me in a state of helplessness.
Everybody else has the same time with it I guess. I don’t feel bad. I see this as an opportunity to develop. ‘We have to persevere. So that after we have done the will of God, we will attain the glories he has prepared for us.’
I have an appointment with a counselor from March of Dimes, an advocacy organization for victims of brain injury and stroke to see if they can help me get a job. Remember, my disability is not only physical. As it stands, I’ve been working with them for over nine months. I’ve applied for nearly 70 jobs and have heard back from very few. I’ve been actively looking for work, or to profit from the real work that I do for a long time now. I can’t keep giving away my paintings. I need to live too.
Because you don’t experience it on any level, does not mean it does not exist or that others experience it. We are all born equally; we don’t all endure the same life path. God bless you. You tell me to be a man. I've had to relearn twice. I've had to relearn breathing and swallowing water. I'm comfortable with who I am. And it takes a lot to go through so much and still have hope. Bless you for saying that.
“Shame is such a deep problem. Trauma is bad. We all experience trauma. But when our thinking and emotional framework are affected by the types of trauma we experience, more difficulties can arise. I’d be willing to say that shame is the biggest problem facing our society today. It can be absolutely devastating. You’ve all been so strong. Just a while longer. Things will be better. “A lot of the time, I feel really betrayed by my emotions, in so many ways, which all stem back to stuff that happened. I don’t want to dwell on this. Trauma, shame and anger, if we do not release it, will fill into our hearts and continue to affect the way we live. This is true years after, if we repress the feelings. And so it was with me also that another reason I have such difficulty controlling my emotions physically is because there is so much pent up anger and shame within my heart. I feel betrayed by my body at times. Learning that the best way to witness and express an ideal is by living it for yourself. I feel like not looking at people most of the time. Please remember this verse: “Neither circumcision or uncircumcision means anything; what counts is the new creation” (Galatians 6:15).”
“When we’d take drives places, I would end up sitting and waiting in the car for sometimes an hour because I didn’t want to be seen in public. My excitement here would come from watching pretty girls my age walk by the car. (Hey, I wasn’t able to meet girls in any other way. In reality, at this point, I was still having my sexuality raped away from me.) I remember one day, driving home from the mall, I remarked that I wanted to get a job at the coffee shop a few of my friends worked at. My abusers both got really upset with me and guilted me down until I said I wouldn’t try to get a job. I don’t even think this was on a conscious level for him. When I said that, one of my abusers started to cry happy tears. I felt so useless and even though I realize they just wanted to keep me down, a dependent, I obeyed as I was trained so well to do.”
Actions speak louder than words. We are more than what we do and say. I say this with love, we have to do more than listen to what we hear. Yes, actions speak louder than words. But there are always reasons for people’s actions, regardless for how neurotic these actions may seem to the outside world. “The fact that a man who smoked twenty cigarettes a day in year’s past but since has done everything in his power to avoid cigarettes, while he is going around advocating the fact that smoking is bad for you does not make him a hypocrite. The fact that he has taken part in the thing he is criticizing does not undermine the integrity of his argument. I understand how you’re feeling. Please remember my message. That trauma accumulates, shame accumulates and this sort of behavior has the potential to perpetuate. I hope this will make more sense to you after some time. Like I said, this was bound to come out. I am strong enough. There is a reason for all of this. Truth will come out.” My witness was and is in my testimony. It’s in what I have been through and how I responded. There is a greater message to the revelation of this secret than simply my life. I am a prophet because of what I have endured. There is insight in that. There’s more to my message than just my book. When you look at my character, please don’t see the reaction as my identity. “If I have to boast about anything, it would surely be that in face of everything that has significantly hurt me or, which had the potential to significantly hurt me over the course of my life, I have turned my cheek in love and humility. Here, I’m not speaking about small things. Here, I’m speaking about rape, violent assaults and blatant attacks on my integrity from people who were and remain very close to my heart.” This is about the truth about this.
As an update: After a number of months in MoD rehabilitative employment counseling, I’ve applied to about 60+ jobs. It feels good each time I apply. I haven’t gotten anything yet.
What others think about us, how we feel about ourselves, how much money we have in the bank, the clothes we wear, the sort of house, car we possess, what we put into our body and indeed, what we do to define ourselves, does not define us. The only thing that defines me, the place from where I derive my identity, broken though it is, is from the blood and sacrificed body of Christ. Christ is my identity.
I want to be clear that this message about occupational struggles is not a teaching for everybody. As a society, we need be compassionate. There were beggars in Jesus’ time as well. For the most part, they were not beggars by choice. I think it should have been obvious that this was not a sweeping statement but rather a statement on myself, who had been born into trauma and raised through trauma. Even still, I haven’t been idle. Who else can say that they have written six books? And I am looking for jobs now.
I know you are forgetting quickly. I will keep reminding.