Surviving a Disability

Surviving a DisabilityI have been disabled for almost four years. I did not chose to have my vision taken from me. I had a heart attack and a stroke. I was told that I was one of the lucky ones. This phrase annoyed me. I was not who I had been before the heart attack and stroke. I could not drive any lmore. I had to give up my job as a driver. I did not know why this had happened to me. I was just getting use to being almost blind when my husband and I moved across the country. We were living near my family in central Pennsylvania when his mother got sick. We moved from Pennsylvania to California and I had to learn how to live in a place that I had never been before.

I was working with the department of rehabilitation in Pennsylvania and they told me that familiarity was the key to a successful adaptation to my recent disability. They taught me how to know where I was and what to do. When I got to California I was blessed enough to have a great worker from the Earle Baum Center come out to my home and help me. I had been close enough to use public transportation or have a friend take me where I needed to go in Pennsylvania. I am now in a very rural area in California. My husband and his family say I live between vineyards. I have to visualize what this must look like. I imagine it is very beautiful.

I have chosen to maintain a positive attitude and accept all the good that is left in my life. I had the opportunity to get to know my husbands family. I do not have to deal with winter snow and ice like I did in Pennsylvania. I could go on and on about all of the things I say to keep a positive outlook on life. I am quoted as saying I am handicapable not handicapped.

It is important to get a support group around you. It does not matter where you find that support group, just get one. I have friends and family as my support but there are many groups available for people with disabilities. One of the things you can do to find the support that you need is go to your state department of rehabilitation. They will help you see if you are able to work or if you should apply for disability. They will help you find support groups in your area also.