Can Your Attitude About Disabilities Keep You From Dancing?
Disabilities, negative circumstances or almost anything that causes negative Attitudes can keep us from dancing. Sometimes the circumstances following a disabling event seem so completely unacceptable that a positive Attitude is absolutely crucial. It’s all about perspective. How people see themselves makes all the difference. Do they see themselves as a victim or a survivor? Being all serious or being able to laugh at yourself can be the difference between feeling like you’re dancing in a castle or lying in a coffin.
My 10 years of experience as a stand-up comic enable me to tell my rehab story in a way people find humorous and enlightening. My experiences showed me the importance and the fun of two things:
- Having an Attitude strengthening strategy.
- Following an Attitude strengthening strategy.
Years on the rehab road prove that when life is rough, when it won’t stop raining, there are specific strategies to follow that enable you to dance in the rain.
From DisAbilities to Dancing in the Rain
Quitting trying to control things beyond your control and having an Attitude of acceptance is the first step toward adapting to, and accepting the Unacceptable.
That’s too simple! Seriously! I need help. What can I do to accept the unacceptable?
OK, here’s another tool, but don’t lose the acceptance tool. It sometimes takes a while, but if you keep thinking about it and do some research you’ll see how it can be real helpful.
OK, but what else have you got?
Do Unto Others…
In a nutshell, another step I was going to give you is, Find someone to help. These are tools #2 and #3. (Tool #1 is in more than one of my other posts.)
When I am visiting my friend Wayne in the long term care facility, it is impossible for me to feel sorry for myself. Sure, I am a hemi- plegic with the left half of my body paralyzed so I am unable to do many of the things I used to take for granted, but it is impossible to not feel thankful that I can do as much as I can do when I visit a fellow rider who can’t do as much as I can.
I feel blessed to visit Wayne. And I feel blessed when I make him laugh and smile. We’ve tried playing other games, but since he can’t talk or move anything but his right hand, Blackjack and doing one arm curls down in the physical therapy room works for us. Wayne helps me to focus on what I have instead of what I don’t have.
I’ve felt pain and loneliness, but, when I choose to have the Attitude of helping others, the pain and loneliness that can accompany disabilities gets replaced by gratitude. The best thing I can say to someone who is facing their own type of “motorcycle crash” is to:
“Find yourself a Wayne to help. It worked for me.”
My thoughts and prayers are with you.
**originally published 10/7/10