Disability

She doesn’t wear it well,

it doesn’t suit, not her style;

some things just make you look old.

But she hadn’t read the small print –

no refund available,

exchange maybe, if unworn.

There’s plenty she would change;

freedom to walk her dog for a start,

spontaneous trips out by herself,

baking those delicate pastry things.

It’s too late now,

she’s worn it for too long,

but she still doesn’t wear it well.

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57 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ina
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 13:50:22

    A sad but beautiful poem! Big hug and love xxx

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 12, 2013 @ 11:54:43

      Thank you Ina. It felt more reflective than sad while ai was writing it, and on reading it again, I think there is a sprinkling of anger and frustration in there too. 😊 L&H xx

      Reply

  2. leamuse
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 13:52:48

    Amazing Christine! When is that book going to be out. No doubt the magazine will want this one as well. Well done!
    You never fail to impress and inspire.

    Love,

    Léa Xxx 🙂

    Reply

  3. pepperandru
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 14:28:40

    Very Moving

    Reply

  4. Thomas Milner
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 14:49:00

    this is great Chris

    Reply

  5. Janette moran
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 14:57:57

    Love this poem. You may feel you don’t wear your disability well . .. but there are parts of you that are stronger than they ever were and you still shine .. . . in fact you shine more than ever (which also makes you look younger as times goes on :-)). A really moving poem. Ps I’m not trying to ‘fix’ with my comment, I hear all your feelings associated with facing disability but wanted to say that also alongside all of that there is so much alive and not old within you which may be easier for someone on the outside to see. I guess this all reflects your strength and energy in facing disability. Hope you get my gist. I had about 3 hours sleep last night so not very articulate xx

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 12, 2013 @ 12:35:26

      Thank you Janette.this is such a lovely comment and I really appreciate your taking time to write it. And I think you are right, it probably is easier for someone on the outside to see it, so I will listen and take notice of what you say.

      You are extremely articulate despite your lack if sleep! And I expect little Sol Bol is worth every minute of it!! 😊 Xxx

      Reply

  6. Cynthia Jobin
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 15:45:37

    Not an easy season, this, for putting on a happy face and murmuring truisms to oneself in the hope of lifting spirits and keeping on. I love what Janette said and would guess she might be in a position to actually know. As my French Canadian ancestors would say, “Bon Courage”, Christine. A really good poem.

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 12, 2013 @ 12:40:40

      Thank you very much Cynthia as ever for your lovely encouraging comment. Yes, Janette does know, she sees me at my best, worst and inbetweens; she is the older of my two daughters and always gives me lots of encouragement. Somehow it seems easier for me to listen to and take on board what ahe has to say now I see it written down.

      And thank you also for the Bon Courage, its very much appreciated. X

      Reply

  7. lscotthoughts
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 15:47:25

    Very beautiful and moving, Chris, and I have to agree with David in saying that you wear it with great courage and you continue to inspire those around you! Please don’t forget this…sending you warm hugs! ♥ HBL

    Reply

  8. restless42
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 16:18:36

    I have been labeled an 80% disabled Veteran and like you I do not wear the label well. But like you, I am so much more than the label. Beautiful write Christine. I’m proud of you! xxxx

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 12, 2013 @ 12:44:49

      Thank you so much Res, your comment is really appreciated very much. You are right, we are so much more than the label; I think I just need reminding of this from time to time. 😊

      Reply

  9. Libby
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 17:20:31

    Wonderful poem Christine. Very moving.

    Reply

  10. Caddo
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 18:58:13

    I realize I’m far away, but I’m close in heart–so, while I appreciate to some degree the constant sense of “losing and loss”, I also see you wearing it Very Well–with great courage and a wonderfully FUN, contagious spirit. Anyone who can cook and bake one-handed is Way UP on the Top of my list! Most people have limitations of one kind or another–but how much they let it get in their way and affect their relationships to others, and to LIFE–well, that’s a personal choice. You choose to “Go for the Gusto”, as do I–so I admire you greatly; and beyond my admiration and respect, you always have my Love and plenty of Hugs and Smoochies!!! your crazy Caddo sis

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 12, 2013 @ 12:49:30

      Thank you Caddo; this is such a loving comment and I think you know how much your words mean to me. You taught me about “The Glad Game” too, which stands me in very hood stead on the bleak days.

      And you have lots of my love too!

      A million hugs and smoochies to you.
      Sis Chris!! X

      Reply

  11. donna55
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 19:06:44

    Rod Stewart was wrong. Hugs, Christine XO

    Reply

  12. Harry
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 20:42:22

    It takes a brave woman to talk and cope with an illness.

    Reply

  13. triciabertram
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 22:04:21

    My dear Christine, this is a beautiful, honest, poetic reflection. It took me to a place I needed to go. You have such a gift for saying the things that need to be said.
    With your permission, I’d like to share this with my health psychologist. I feel it will speak to many people.
    Yes you are corageous, not just in your daily living with the bastard MS, but also with your ability to speak a truth that’s sometimes hard for others to hear.
    I love you so very much, and am grateful, on a daily basis, for your presence in my life. ❤ xoxo
    (Christine, I'd also like to repost this on my blog with a link back to your wordpress site. There are some who follow my blog but don't comment on the site. I feel this poem would really 'speak' to them)
    Big hugs xx

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 12, 2013 @ 12:56:21

      Thanks so much Tricia for this beautiful comment. I think we connect so well because of the raw honesty, as you have that too and I love you for it along with many other reasons of course, not least of which is your wonderfully wicked sense of humour. 😊

      And please do share it with your health psychologist, Im humbled that you wish to do this. Also many thanks for re-blogging it too.

      Love and hugs for you and Big Ted xxxx

      Reply

  14. Trackback: Disability (a guest post by journeyintopoetry) | Writing the roads of grief
  15. PookyH
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 22:50:25

    This is painfully honest. It makes me sad to read how you feel but I am finding that knowing you and sharing in the harder days is a real education. It’s so easy to simply dismiss people as ‘brave’ and ‘inspirational’ etc etc… and you are all of those things… but sometimes in ascribing those labels, I think we can forget about the tortured person underneath who needs their hand held sometimes. xxx

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 12, 2013 @ 13:00:57

      My lovely friend Pooky, your comment has brought tears to my eyes, good ones though. I think this is because of the deeper understanding you show even though we dont know each other too well yet, although that is changing very quickly.

      And you are right, just a hand to hold sometimes says much more than any words and I feel you holding my hand now.. Xx

      Reply

      • PookyH
        Dec 14, 2013 @ 21:05:43

        I’m glad we’re getting to know each other better. And my hand is here and ready for the holding any time that’s helpful. I’m quite a hand holder xxx

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 14, 2013 @ 21:12:48

      Thank you xx 😊

      Reply

  16. bardessdmdenton
    Dec 11, 2013 @ 22:56:20

    You just wear your beauty, your love of life, creativity, compassion, loving – all that you are, differently, Christine. Caddo said it very well – everyone has limitations that seem to overtake one’s ability to shake them … and then it seems too late. As I have said before about your poetry – you express from a very personal place what is so often relatable. Blessings, and never forget the beauty, the strength, the heart and soul that is essentially you, that no illness can take away. XO ♥

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 12, 2013 @ 13:05:07

      Diane, thank you so much for your gentle, reasuring words which have moved me in a very deep place. And the fact that you see my poems as relatable is lovely because I never want or intend them to be self pitying. I simply say it how it is and if others can relate to felings I express then that’s a bonus for me

      Lots of love and
      Big hugs
      Xxx. ❤

      Reply

  17. Norma
    Dec 12, 2013 @ 06:13:11

    Poignant, clever, beautiful Christine. So well written. You have talent and a beautiful heart and that’s what counts. Hugs & kisses xxx 🙂

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 12, 2013 @ 13:06:59

      Thank you so much Norma. Your lovely comment means a great deal to me.

      I am looking forward to an avalanche of wonderful photograps from Europe! 😊

      Hugs and kisses to you too
      Xxx

      Reply

  18. journeyintopoetry
    Dec 12, 2013 @ 12:06:31

    Thank you David. I have listened to and heard what you have said; It will stay with me. 😊

    Much Love

    Christine
    Xxx

    Reply

  19. Fergiemoto
    Dec 13, 2013 @ 00:10:46

    There are many beautiful things you wear well, including your artistic and poetic skills, and how you can eloquently and poignantly express your feelings through your words. I can relate to these words in your poem, and I can feel the pain. I would like to return many things I “wear” for a refund or a better exchange, but it is not to be right now.
    This beautiful once again, Christine.

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 13, 2013 @ 10:10:22

      Thank you very much Fergie for this lovely comment. Your support and encouragement mean a great deal to me. I think there are things all of us would choose not to keep but exchange or return at different times. I guess it goes straight back to acceptance again, which at times, I baulk against. But thats just being human I think. I often think about you and your mum; I hope that doesnt sound like a platitude, because its meant very sincerely. Xx

      Reply

  20. smita sriwastav
    Dec 13, 2013 @ 06:01:09

    loved it , very innovative and interesting, touching even, I could identify myself in these lines. Please find time to check out my poems on my blog, Rain-Chimes~My Poetry Blog, http://drsmitasriwas280.wordpress.com/

    Reply

  21. harulawordsthatserve
    Dec 14, 2013 @ 08:20:42

    A moving poem with your unique insider dry wit. The metaphor of a piece of clothing works extremely well, and for me, clarifies and affirms that you are not your MS. Sure, it is currently part of your make up, but it is not who you are at essence. I feel the frustration of an independent and courageous soul in this, wanting to be able to do things alone and as before but finding this no longer possible. I am grateful for your gift for writing because this poem, as well as many of your others, confirms to me that it is the best medicine, one used to lighten and observe the thoughts that might otherwise poison if left unexpressed. You’re such an inspiration Christine. Love and hugs, Harula xxxxxx

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 14, 2013 @ 17:27:40

      Thank you so much for this beautiful comment Harula.

      I think the loss of independence is the very hardest thing in all of this journey Im on. And you are so right, being able to write about it certainly does help to dilute the sometimes very concentrated enotions. I am becoming qccustomed to my “new normals”, but there are days when it just gets too much so I write instead of screaming, it’s more productive and healthier! 😊😙

      Lots of love
      xxx🎄xxx

      Reply

  22. Blackbird
    Dec 14, 2013 @ 21:15:57

    Absolutely beautiful! And inspiring…thank you!

    Reply

  23. suzywordmuser
    Dec 15, 2013 @ 02:20:42

    So perfectly described Christine, this was how my mum used to feel with her arthritis – she didn’t wear it well either. And I’m very glad to hear you don’t wear it well! If something is not us, no matter what it is in life, even if it’s something we seem to be stuck with, to have a mindset that doesn’t fully accept it I feel is a good thing, even if that means some conflict in the process. Because the alternative is to not only wear it, but become it, mind and body, and that can only cause an erosion of personality – which is not good!

    I saw a documentary about 10 years ago, and it was about a man with polio, he had hardly any legs or arms, they had wasted from the illness, and yet after years of suffering abuse and all sorts of horrible care homes he’d lived in, somehow he’d got himself away from that and into a position where he lived in his own flat, and carers came in to help him with everything, all he could do was lie flat on his back. And even though it was the early years of the internet, he had a computer above his head, and he tapped the keys with a stick attached to his head, and he made hundreds of friends, some of which used to come and see him. It was as if he called out to the world, and they came to him, to keep him company! 🙂 I found it amazing that even though his body and his circumstances were certainly something he didn’t want to wear, in his mind, he was like a man with nothing wrong with him!

    There’s a You Tube video of another man I heard about recently who spent 43 years in hospital due to suffering with polio, and he does something very similar, while his female room mate in the bed opposite paints with her mouth. If you put ‘Polio Survivor Who Lived 43 Years In Hospital’ into You Tube, hopefully you will find the videos of them. It’s a little shocking to think someone could be in that same place for that long, but there is something inspiring about their story. Physically they are restricted, but mind wise, like you, they are not wearing it well! 😉

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 15, 2013 @ 10:36:34

      Hi Suzy, and thank you so much for your comprehensive and inspiring comment. I really do appreciate all your comments which are so carefully thought through. I will certainly check out the YouTube videos.

      You are right of course, and I am pleased I dont wear it well, because if I did, I think I would forget who I can be, physically, mentally and emotionally. It is truly amazing how, with determination/stubbornness, people can overcome so much.

      I think my main issue is that I always thought being in a state of shock could just last days or maybe weeks, just as I used to think once you accepted somehing that was it, youd conquered it. Not true!! Not for me anyway. I think that two years down the line with my diagnosis I am still suffeing from the shock of how quickly my condition has become so debilitating. It seems like yesterday I was still walking my dog, dashing into town etc etc and now all this. Its still sinking in and the poetry writing has been a life saver. First, it has been vehicle for expressing feelings, but more than that it is becoming something I love to do. And as you know I have made friends on the internet too, some of whom I feel closer to than “real” people. And I am doing what I call “messing with colours” using oil pastels with my left hand. So watch out for my “Turner Prize”!!

      So, as are most things in life, this acceptance and getting through the shock are daily challenges, sometimes met with positivity and sometimes not; I guess that’s called “being human”.

      Thank you again for this lovely comment.
      Xx🎄 😊

      Reply

  24. beckarooney
    Dec 18, 2013 @ 20:14:07

    This truly moved me Christine, the way you wrote it was clever and drew me in until I felt like I was there myself. For me you wear courage and inspiration above anything else 🙂 x

    Reply

  25. I HAVE A VOICE
    Dec 19, 2013 @ 01:01:40

    Inner wisdom has really developed your writing insight! Wonderful Christine~ Faithfully Debbie

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 19, 2013 @ 11:16:16

      Thank you so much Debbie! I know I keep saying it, but your encouragement and the support you give me is one of the reasons why I keep on gaining confidence to write and share my words.
      Hugs xx

      Reply

  26. Jane Thorne
    Dec 26, 2013 @ 16:18:23

    Profound Chris. There are times when only love can lift us a little…funky teapot love to you my lovely friend. ❤ Xxxxx

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 27, 2013 @ 16:38:39

      Thank you Jane. What you have said is so true. I think, too, that this needs to start with love for ourselves. Why do I find, after all this time, and having gone through so much, that this is one of the most difficult things for me to do. I have heard all over the place for ever and a day, it seems, that we cant love others until we love ourselves. But I think I can love others so much that I leave little or none for me.
      This one always confuses me.

      Lots of love and hugs
      Xxx

      Reply

      • Jane Thorne
        Dec 27, 2013 @ 17:05:09

        I am with you on the confusion with this one…a tricky balance because our generation was brought up to see putting ourselves first as selfish. A right royal conundrum!! We can start in little ways I suppose…by saying what we need to those that love us. We naturally see what they need and fill the gaps without being asked…asking others to fill our gaps may help in more ways than one. Much love my lovely friend. Xxxxx

    • journeyintopoetry
      Dec 27, 2013 @ 17:36:39

      Those are wise words Jane. And I think you are so right, we were brought up with putting ourslves first as selfish. I had sort of orgotten that. Thats why its so difficult for us! Youhave helped me with this comment! Thank you! Love and hugs ❤

      Reply

  27. Betty Hayes Albright
    Jan 07, 2014 @ 20:33:36

    Deeply poignant, Christine. Written beautifully and honestly. I think this is one that many will resonate with, in one way or another.

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 07, 2014 @ 20:56:32

      Thank you Betty. I don’t think I will ever get used to it all. Ive always been so fit. Me and walkers/scooters/wheelchairs just don’t go together! Although I am grateful these aids are available or I would never be able to go out. So I guess I have a love/hate relationship with them.

      Lots of love and hugs
      xxx

      Reply

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