#CPChatNow Recap- 09-15-2021

Celebratory and reflective vibes emanated from the weekly cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow Wednesday, September 15th, 2021. Allow me, chat co-host Zachary Fenell, tell you more via your weekly recap. Let the celebration begin!

Early on in the evening I offered a reason to celebrate by sharing some good news.

Zachary shares the news of his new job!

September 15th marked the night before my last day at Beachwood Public Library. Participants congratulated me as I shared I would soon begin as a branch services clerk at the South Euclid Public Library. Along with the congratulations came curiosity.

Zachary details some of the responsibilities his new position entails.

My co-host Devin Axtman asked me about the differences in my new position. All the discussion about my new job led long-time chat regular Blemi to make an observation.

Blemi comments about how far people in the #CPChatNow community have come since the chat first started.

Blemi commented we in the #CPChatNow community have come a long way since the chat’s beginnings. Her comment reminded me that December will mark our eight-year anniversary! Said realization inspired me to ask a question.

Devin answers what advice he would give his pre-CPChatNow self.
Blemi shares what advice she would give her pre-CPChatNow self.

Getting creative, I asked participants what advice or wisdom their 2021 self would give their pre-CPChatNow self. Devin responded “You can’t hurry love.” Meanwhile Blemi replied “Be patient and enjoy what you have instead of always living for the future.”

What about you? Keep the conversation going and answer for the week’s extend-the-conversation question “What wisdom or advice would your 2021 self give your pre-CPChatNow self?”

Leave your reply in the comments! Afterwards set a reminder to join us on Twitter each and every Wednesday. The party begins at 8pm ET.

Until then, remember. Don’t blend in. Blend out!

-Zachary

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks "What wisdom or advice would your 2021 self give your pre-CPChatNow self?"
Answer below!

#CPChatNow Recap- 9/8/2021

This past week in #CPChatNow was a fun one! Members discussed outdoor activities, what they want to do to make 2021 a success, and the fact #CPChatNow is turning 8 soon! This is #CPChatNow co-host, Devin Axtman, taking you along for the ride on this week’s recap. All aboard!

First, Blemi shared some recent exciting outdoor activities she and her fiancé have been doing lately. First, they recently went kayaking. She tweeted a video about her experience.

blemi tweets her youtube video of kayaking with her fiance, zach tweets that looks like beautiful scenery and asked what blemi finds most challenging about kayaking, blemi tweets the most challenging thing is getting out of the boat and the most enjoyable is getting to enjoy nature from a different viewpoint and she tweets the rapids got pretty high at one point

Also, Blemi tweeted about a new camper that she is buying with her fiancé:

blemi tweets a picture of her new toy, a camper
i tweet that i'm sure they will take the camper out a lot, blemi tweets it is in for a check up and she does not have to camp in a tent and will have a bed and toilet

Zach asks members what they want to do to make the year 2021 a success:

zach tweets the last quarter of the year is approaching. he asks what members would like to complete before the end of the year to consider 2021 successful, chris tweets her degree, but the past month put a wrench in that, blemi tweets she wants to make through the year with mind and body in tact

Zach also asks Blemi why she feels 2021 is more challenging than 2020:

zach asks if the continuation of covid has made 2021 more challenging, blemi tweets her agreement and that people where she lives are being stupid with numbers climbing and she can't hide in the house

Finally, Zach points out that #CPChatNow is about to turn 8 in December:

zach tweets #CPChatNow will be turning 8 in December, i tweet it is in 2nd grade, zach tweets next thing you know, we will be having a graduation party, blemi tweets we're old

This brings us to our Extend-The-Conversation Question: What is your favorite outdoor activity?

extend-the-conversation graphic, multi-colored #CPChatNow logo, what is your favorite outdoor activity? picture of bridge with a brown sign with 2 white figures of hikers

Please share your answers in the comment and join us each Wednesday at 8 Eastern on Twitter at #CPChatNow.

-Devin

#CPChatNow Recap- 09-01-2021

Every Wednesday participants in the live cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow gather to enjoy comradery and conversation. Wednesday, September 1st, 2021 proved no different. To tell you more, I am chat co-host Zachary Fenell. Welcome to your weekly recap!

In addition to a night filled with engaging discussion, September 1st marked the start of an annual challenge.

#CPChatNow participants discuss the possibility of creating a team for Steptember 2022.

That challenge, Steptember, arose in the discussion September 1st thanks to chat regular Veronica. Steptember challenges individuals to move 10,000 steps a day throughout September. All a way to help fundraise for life-changing scientific advances for the CP community. To learn more, visit steptember.us.

Veronica wondered if anyone planned to participate in Steptember 2021. I quote tweeted her and noted another participant Timmy approached me about starting a #CPChatNow Steptember team. I declined the idea this year because I am still healing from my groin strain. However, next year I say game on!

Needing to put off a #CPChatNow Steptember team until 2022 due to injury could cause “Life isn’t fair” thoughts to form. Another popular topic from our September 1st Twitter chat.

#CPChatNow participants answer the question "How often do you find yourself thinking 'Life isn't fair' and how do you cope with the feeling?"

Inspired by long-time chat regular Blemi‘s Youtube video “Having Sad Days with Cerebral Palsy,” I asked participants “How often do you find yourself thinking ‘Life isn’t fair’ and how do you cope with the feeling?” Blemi and I discovered similarities in our answers. We both had the thought more when younger, but specific frustrations can still trigger sad days. Learning to come to terms with CP has helped a lot to cope with the down days.

What about you? Keep the conversation going and answer as the week’s extend-the-conversation question “How often do you find yourself thinking ‘Life isn’t fair’ and how do you cope with the feeling?” Leave your answer in the “Comments” section.

Afterwards, mark your calendars to join us at #CPChatNow each and every Wednesday on Twitter. The fun begins at 8pm ET.

Until then, remember. Don’t blend in. Blend out!

-Zachary

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks "How often do you find yourself thinking 'Life isn't fair' and how do you cope with the feeling?"
Answer below!

#CPChatNow Recap- 8/25/21

This past week in #CPChatNow was eventful as always. Members discussed falls, reactions to their falls and accessorizing their mobility devices. This is #CPChatNow co-host, Devin Axtman, taking you along for the ride on this week’s recap. All aboard!

First, talked turned to a familiar topic for those with Cerebral Palsy, falls. Zach discussed one of his recent falls with Blemi that led to a groin strain:

zach tweets he saw his doctor who confirmed he suffered a groin strain, blemi tweeted we can expect more falls as we age, zach tweeted he is curious about that, he did have a face mask in his back pocket which caused a jerk and his reaction time could be delayed

Next, members discussed the strangest reactions to falls they have experienced:

zach asks about the strangest reaction others have had to a fall, i tweeted about a friend in high school picking me up like a heybale on his farm, zach tweeted about yelling at a friend who did not ask him if he needs help when he went to pick zach up
tonia tweets about a reaction where a chair user reacted to her flipping off a steep sidewalk in Costa Rica and landed in the grass, he asked casually if she was ok

Finally, talk turned to another common topic for those with CP, mobility aids and making them fashionable.

zach asks who has multiple mobility devices so they can make their disability fashionable and match with outfits, i tweet that i have one pair of shoes and a wheelchair, zach tweets his cane is black and black goes with pretty much everything, alessandro tweets he uses a scooter, but he wears jordans or crocs

Blemi and Zach tweet about how it’s hard to find cute devices and they wish there was more availability:

blemi tweets she is trying to find cute devices, zach asks if she would spray paint a device or have rob work on it, she tweets it would be difficult with all of the parts and grooves, zach asks if there is someone who specializes in mobility devices, blemi tweets she wishes there was a site or store dedicated to young adult mobility aids

This brings to our Extend-The-Conversation Question: What is your favorite mobility aid you have ever had? Please share your answers in the comments and join us each Wednesday at 8 Eastern on Twitter at #CPChatNow.

-Devin

Update On Recaps

Wednesday continues to remain a weekly highlight for participants in the live cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow. A fact I, #CPChatNow co-host Zachary Fenell, wanted to emphasize because circumstances prevented me from publishing recaps the last two weeks. Circumstances I will detail today.

As our regular readers know, my co-host Devin Axtman and I alternate weeks compiling the weekly recaps. Said schedule left the Wednesday, August 4th recap my responsibility. Unfortunately, on Thursday, August 5th I fell and hurt myself. Aggravating my groin to the point I could not take a step forward. At least, not until two days later. Even then, I needed a walker to make those forward steps.

Nonetheless, I thought I could get the August 4th recap done prior to the August 11th chat. Reality showed me otherwise. I accepted defeat and informed Devin I would instead complete the August 11th recap. However, upon getting ready to compile the night’s highlights, I encountered a problem.

Twitter appears to be experiencing technical difficulties.
Screen shot showing Twitter technical difficulties

To gather recap highlights I scroll back to the beginning of that date’s conversation and then scroll up. Seeking out highlights which feature main subjects discussed, highlight our communal atmosphere, and/or stimulate new ways to think about a topic. In scrolling down to get to the beginning of our August 11th Twitter chat the tweets stopped loading. I attempted to troubleshoot the issue multiple ways. Using a different web browser. Signing out from my account and signing back in. Walking away for a few hours and return hoping Twitter fixed the technical difficulties. Nothing worked.

Due to the above, I could not compile a recap for our August 11th Twitter chat. Again though, I wanted to post this update to emphasize Wednesdays still remain a weekly highlight for those in our community. Hopefully the technical difficulties will resolve and recaps can return next week. In the meantime please consider joining us each and every Wednesday on Twitter, starting at 8pm ET.

Until then remember, don’t blend in. Blend out!

-Zachary

#CPChatNow Recap- 7/28/2021

This past week in #CPChatNow was lit as always. Members discussed aging and CP, perceptions of disabled people, and books by disabled authors. This is #CPChatNow co-host, Devin Axtman, taking you along for the ride on this week’s recap. All aboard!

Chris started the conversation by sharing research that showed people with CP are more likely to break bones as they age with people in their 50s having the bone strength of people in their 80s. This led to conversation about what we can do as we age to help bone health.

zach tweeted a link to an article demonstrating research that people with CP are more likely to break bones in their 50s
i tweeted that is not reassuring, but at least we have research into cp. chris tweeted she is at risk for osteoporosis so she asked her doctor. her doctor said that what you do in your 20s or 30s is important and calcium supplements help. chris tweeted about a friend who had to have surgery for breaking his toe.

Next, Veronica tweeted about her son interacting with a disabled person who other people at work did not respect:

veronica tweeted about an interaction her son had with someone who used her phone to communicate at work. she appeared very smart, but other people did not treat her as smart, karen tweeted that is ableist and wrong, veronica tweeted she feels no one has any patience which is the problem

Finally, talk turned to disabled authors and books members liked to read. First, Karen and Zach discussed Zach’s in progress book.

karen asked if people are going to watch the paralympics. zach tweeted he will if he has his book done by then. karen asked what his book is called. zach tweets the title is still TBA, but the book is about accomplishing the  unreasonable which for him is becoming a marathoner.

Karen talked about books related to disability that she liked. She tweeted about All the Way to the Top: How One Girl’s Fight for Americans with Disabilities Changed Everything and Being Heumann. Becoming Heumann is being turned into a movie!

karen tweeted she recommends all children read All the Way to the Top: How One Girl's Fight for Americans With Disabilities Changed Everything. I tweeted it is hard to believe the ADA is 30 years old and karen tweets it is actually 31 years old as of july 26, 2021
karen tweets that Being Heumann is being turned into a movie and asks who is excited. I tweeted my encouragement for people to read the book and karen tweeted she likes the book.

This brings us to our Extend-The-Conversation Question: What is your favorite book or other art created by someone with a disability?

Thanks for reading and join us each Wednesday at 8 Eastern on Twitter at #CPChatNow!

-Devin

#CPChatNow Recap- 07-21-2021

Communal vibes strongly emanated from the weekly cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow Wednesday, July 21st, 2021. To tell you more, I am chat co-host Zachary Fenell. Welcome to your weekly recap.

Yearning for the community our Twitter chat provides remained present prior to Wednesday.

Long-time #CPChatNow regular Blemi tweets her eagerness for Wednesday to arrive.

On Tuesday, July 20th long-time chat regular Blemi took to Twitter, wishing the day was Wednesday. All so she could work through the lots of stuff on her mind. After a 24-hour wait, Blemi had her chance to seek support from fellow chat participants.

In accordance with our recap rules to not highlight tweets featuring sensitive life events, I will avoid delving further into that conversation. Although, I can say more then Blemi received support from our community July 21st.

Members in the #CPChatNow community congratulate Alessandro on getting a new job.

Alessandro possessed some exciting news. He officially got a new job! Others in the chat offered congratulatory messages to celebrate.

Elsewhere in the night’s dialogue, talk turned to the spasticity involved in spastic cerebral palsy.

Various participants answer how they would describe their spasticity to others.

In-particular I asked participants how they would describe their spasticity to others. The responses varied. Veronica noted not really getting asked about her spasticity. Meanwhile Blemi replied “I tell them my neurons are always firing making me stiff.” She admitted not knowing whether that stands 100% accurate, but she finds the answer easy to explain.

Additionally, Stacey supplied an easy to understand reply saying if you put anything in the crook of her arm, you will need the jaws of life to get it out. Opposingly, Lorna stated she does not explain it. It’s just that if she thinks too much about moving she can’t move. Lorna also commented she does tell people not to use the word “spaz.”

Regarding managing spasticity, Blemi mentioned a difference maker she recently began using.

Blemi talks about using a magnesium supplement to help with muscle stiffness.

By using a magnesium supplement, Blemi has felt a difference in her stiffness. What about you, though? Answer for the week’s extend-the-conversation question, “How do you manage your spasticity?” Respond in the “Comments” section.

Answer for the week's extend-the-conversation question, "How do you manage your spasticity?"

Please note, what works for one person might not work for another. So if somebody’s answer intrigues you, discuss as needed with the appropriate medical professionals. Let them know you found the suggestion thanks to us at #CPChatNow. We meet each and every Wednesday on Twitter, starting at 8pm ET. Make sure to mark your calendars.

Until then, remember. Don’t blend in. Blend out!

-Zachary

#CPChatNow Recap- 7/14/2021

This past week in #CPChatNow was hopping as always. Members discussed seeing themselves walking, worries about falling, and what Disability Pride Month means to them. This is #CPChatNow co-host, Devin Axtman, taking you along for the ride on this week’s recap. All aboard!

First, my wedding and me walking up the aisle sparked conversation about walking. I was surprised when I saw myself walking on my wedding highlight video. Members seemed to share the same sentiments.

i ask if anyone else gets surprised with how they walk. zach tweets its a jarring experience. jen tweets she rarely sees herself walking, but yes and she has cringed when she sees herself on video.
zach tweets seeing himself walking is less jarring due to seeing himself in drive thru window, alessandro compared himself to a newborn giraffe, zach compared himself to a drunken stumble. chris tweets the worst thing is hearing herself speak and she knows why she is asked if she is australian, blemi tweets it shocks and horrifies her.
i tweeted it was momentary revulsion and then a thought that i put a lot of work for that walk

Next, members discussed worries about falling. Members specifically discussed concerns of falling at weddings and big events.

zach asked if members got nervous about falling at weddings and similar events. i tweeted i got nervous walking down the aisle and my gait gets worse. blemi tweeted she is skipping the aisle and she gets slower and more self conscious when she is nervous

Finally, members marked July being Disability Pride Month, by explaining what disability pride means to them.

i ask what disability pride means to members to celebrate disability pride month. i tweeted disability pride means identifying as disabled and furthering the notion disability is a beautiful part of diversity.
chris tweeted disability pride means not being ashamed of who she is. being around people who recognize the challenges of her disabilities, but also see the good in them. being comfortable in her disabled skin. blemi tweeted she loves chris' definition

This brings us to our Extend-The-Conversation Question: What is something that routinely surprises you about your disability? Please share your answers in the comments and join us each Wednesday on Twitter at #CPChatNow!

-Devin

#CPChatNow Recap- 07-07-2021

Participants in the weekly cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow gathered for a lively conversation Wednesday, July 7th, 2021. Here to tell you more, I am chat co-host Zachary Fenell. Welcome to your recap.

Various topics came and went throughout the evening July 7th. Early in the night dialogue revolved around the upcoming Paralympics.

#CPChatNow participants discuss Paralympic coverage.

Admittedly, I raised the Paralympic topic when tweeting a BBC News story, “Tokyo Paralympics: Most of Channel 4’s TV hosts will be disabled.” In my tweet, I asked what others thought about Channel 4’s pledge to have more than 70% of its Paralympic presenters be disabled. My co-host Devin Axtman responded, calling the move “much needed.” I agreed, saying involving disabled voices should help prevent an ablest narrative.

Your turn! What do you think? Answer for the week’s extend-the-conversation question, “What do you think of Channel 4’s pledge to have more than 70% of its Paralympic presenters be disabled?” Leave your answer in the “Comments” section.

Continuing on, chat regular Chris and I found ourselves discussing athletes who had to persevere through much adversity. A subject which led me to pose another question.

#CPChatNow participants discuss quotes they tell themselves in order to persevere through adversity.

I asked participants “When facing tough times, what quote or advice do you tell yourself in order to keep persevering?” Long-time regular Blemi responded “Never give up on your dreams,” a quote from Rick Hansen Man in Motion. Meanwhile Alessandro replied “Do or do not. There is no try.”

Putting Alessandro’s chosen advice into action, do remember to answer the week’s extend-the-conversation question. Again, the question asks “What do you think of Channel 4’s pledge to have more than 70% of its Paralympic presenters be disabled?

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks "What do you think of Channel 4's pledge to have more than 70% of its Paralympic presenters be disabled?"
Reply in the “Comments.”

Afterwards, set yourself a reminder to join #CPChatNow each and every Wednesday, starting at 8pm ET. Or, tweet me and ask me to include you in my weekly #CPChatNow reminder tweet. Until our next correspondence, remember. Don’t blend in. Blend out!

-Zachary

#CPChatNow Recap- 6/30/2021

This past week in #CPChatNow was a happening as always. Members discussed how the heat impacts their CP, feelings after a job interview, and their favorite summer activity. This is #CPChatNow co-host, Devin Axtman, taking you along for the ride on this week’s recap. All aboard!

Zach asked members how the heat impacts their CP. Most answered that the cold impacts them much more, but Grace described some impacts from the heat:

zach asked if members are impacted by heat. grace answered she gets spasticity in the cold, but prefers it to summer. she gets muscle spasms because of dehydration, headaches with barometric pressure changes, and depression with brain fog. grace thinks she has summer SAD

Zach has had job interviews lately and we discussed the feelings experienced after a job interview:

chris talked about how she was exhausted due to setting up her boyfriend's computer, zach tweeted he is tired due to work in the morning and a job interview in the afternoon, he tweeted it was emotionally tiring with nerves beforehand, second guessing afterwards. i tweeted that's the worst part of a job interview that it's helpful to look back, but only helpful to an extent
zach tweeted he is fortunate to have a great support system that gives him advice. at some point you have to trust yourself and answer how you feel is best.

Finally, members discussed their favorite summertime activity.

zach asked what is your favorite summer activity, he tweeted attending a baseball game is one of his favorites along with swimming, i tweeted i like to hang out in my parent's backyard, blemi tweeted she likes to sit outside and read.

Now it’s your turn! This brings us to our Extend-The-Conversation Question: What is the best advice you have received about a job interview? Please join us tonight at 8 Eastern on #CPChatNow on Twitter.

-Devin