#CPChatNow Recap- 02-24-2021

Conversation during the cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow Wednesday, February 24th, 2021 covered many different subjects. To tell you more, I am chat co-host Zachary Fenell. Welcome to your weekly recap.

A familiar face dropped in the chat and prompted dialogue.

Jorge asks #CPChatNow participants about any exciting or surprising happenings which occurred over the past week.

Jorge Oteiza asked about exciting or surprising developments in participants’ life over the past week. Blemi responded saying she had thundersnow Tuesday night. A weather condition she had never heard about before. Honestly, neither had I. Fitting, given according to Treehugger.com the occurrence where thunder booms during a snowstorm, remains quite rare. Hence thundersnow certainly qualifies as a surprising development.

Meanwhile my answer to Jorge belonged under the excitement category.

Zachary shares an exciting accomplishment from his past week.

As you may or may not know, I am working on another book. In an exciting development, I completed my manuscript. Admittedly, I still possess much editing to do. Nevertheless, completing a draft remains an accomplishment. One which deserves recognition.

Recognizing accomplishment emerged as a topic we discussed further.

#CPChatNow participants discuss recognizing achievements.

The achievement dialogue stemmed from me reminiscing back to my childhood when my physical therapist presented me trophies for PT. An idea which came to her after she heard me express envy for my brothers’ Little League trophies. While cool, Veronica reminded us achievements come in forms beyond physical feats. She did this by sharing that her child recently earned a varsity letter for academic achievement. Pretty cool!

Let us continue spotlighting different achievements via the extend-the-conversation question. Keep the conversation going and answer “What is an accomplishment of yours that you are proud of?” Leave your response in the “Comments.”

Moving on with recapping the February 24th chat, we literally discussed moving. As in maneuvering and walking.

Blemi sparks conversation about walking by mentioning how she hates seeing herself walk on camera.
Devin adds to the conversation about seeing yourself walk.

In-particular we commiserated over how we feel when we see ourselves walk, either on camera or through catching our reflection in a window. I described the sensation as jarring, explaining “In my head I move just like everyone else. Although, I know that’s not the truth.” A sentiment Blemi enthusiastically concurred with, replying “YES! SO MUCH THIS.”

Adding to the chatter, my co-host Devin Axtman said he feels this way too. However, he reminds himself “I put a lot of work into that walk.” You could consider the walk an accomplishment, which brings us back to the extend-the-conversation question for the week. “What is an accomplishment of yours that you are proud of?”

Remember to answer the week's extend-the-conversation question- "What is an accomplishment of yours that you are proud of?"

Tell us in the “Comments” below. Then set yourself a reminder to join us each and every Wednesday on Twitter, starting at 8pm ET. Tweet you soon.

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

Zachary

#CPChatNow Recap- 02-17-2021

To quote Gorilla Monsoon, this past week in #CPChatNow was a happening as always. Members discussed various topics such as obtaining Assistive Technology, maintaining motivation, publishing a book, and learning to fall. This is #CPChatNow co-host, Devin Axtman, taking you along for the ride on this week’s recap. All aboard!

Chris shared something I thought was cool that you might want to look into in your area and state. Chris discussed the concept of lending libraries for Assistive Technology that she used to obtain products.

zach retweets heather's tweet about her swedish cutting board being her favorite assistive product, chris tweeted she has seen that and the state of washington has an AT lending lab that brought her things to check out

Zach talked about the difficulties he has experienced maintaining motivation and stated he goes through streaks of low motivation. Other members chimed in with their experiences and how they remain motivated.

zach asks if anyone went through streaks with motivation, i tweeted that i do and especially so with work being canceled for the week, zach tweets he was frustrated when his hours were cut in half, but it gave him more time to finish his book, but it took him a few weeks
zach tweets he asks himself what he will regret if he dies tomorrow, blemi tweets that is an ok way to motivate himself, zach tweets he feels it is a good attitude as long as the person does not overdo it

I would like to recognize that Zach has finished his manuscript and it is now in the editing phase. Zach is planning to write a book about the process of his training for a marathon.

zach tweets about the topics of his book, anxieties and falls he experienced, learning to refocus, how to stay motivated during training, he tweets he only did races that mentioned walking at first, chris tweets that she understands zach's anxiety towards running and shared experiences from high school

Finally, members discussed a common thing that is surprising to many able bodied people, learning to fall either in therapy or other areas.

i tweeted i learned how to fall in physical therapy, blemi tweeted her brother taught her after second judo class and it has saved her from many injuries, zach tweeted it is amazing he has never hurt himself despite the falls he has taken
blemi tweeted she bent her pinky finger this year and it is her most significant injury from a fall,

This brings us to our Extend-The-Conversation Question: What is the oddest thing you have learned how to do related to your disability?

extend-the-conversation question graphic: an orange, blue, and green #CPChatNow logo in the upper right hand corner, extend-the-conversation question in green, What is the oddest thing you have learned how to do related to your disability? in black, an illustration of a half orange and half red lightbulb that looks like a brain with a variety of shapes and letters inside the brain, #CPCHATNOW in white with a green background

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

-Devin

#CPChatNow Recap- 02-10-2021

Cold weather made an impact on the live cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow Wednesday, February 10th, 2021. To tell you more, I am chat co-host Zachary Fenell. Time to fix yourself a hot beverage or situate yourself around the fire place so you can warmly enjoy your weekly recap.

Early dialogue in the evening related to unusually cold temperatures.

#CPChatNow participants from Texas discuss their unusually cold winter.

In Texas where my co-host Devin Axtman and long-time chat regular Jen lives, temperatures remained in the 20s (Fahrenheit). Quite cold for them! This led me to ask a question.

Participants in #CPChatNow discuss how they get by  when temperatures are cold.

Curious, I asked others how they manage in the cold. Devin answered he “just wear layers and complain haha.” Similar to my own response.

Zachary talks about how he manages to get by when the temperatures are cold.

Like Devin, I mentioned wearing layers. In-particular noting I wear two pairs of socks. Additionally, I find myself using my heating pad (Cure Choice electric heating pad) a lot more. As we continued to discuss the impact cold weather has on cerebral palsy, Devin and I discovered another similarity.

#CPChatNow participants discuss needing to stretch more due to colder weather.

Through chat regular Chris, the havoc cold weather can cause on spastic muscles arose as a subject. Devin and I both noting we need to stretch our hamstrings more in the winter. Our specific stretches possessing some resemblance with both involving reaching for our toes. A stretch I do in a standing position. Meanwhile Devin sits on the floor and tries to touch his toes.

What about you? Answer for the week’s extend-the-conversation question, “How do you stay stretched out?” Leave your answer down below in the “Comments.”

On a related matter, the extend-the-conversation question Devin posed in the February 3rd, 2021 recap also surfaced during our Twitter chat February 10th.

#CPChatNow participants discuss their favorite assistive products.

As a reminder, Devin asked in the February 3rd recap, what people’s favorite assistive products are. Heather responded, linking to her Swedish cutting board. The cutting board making cutting with one hand a lot easier!

Please remember to keep the conversation going by answering this week’s extend-the-conversation question. “How do you stay stretched out?”

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks, "How do you stay stretched out?"
Answer in the “Comments” section.

Afterwards, write yourself a reminder to join our Twitter chat each and every Wednesday. The fun begins at 8pm ET.

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

-Zachary

#CPChatNow Recap- 2-3-2021

This past week in #CPChatNow was busy as always. Members discussed scooters that look like cars, new adaptive shoes from Nike, and the struggles from CP caused by Old Man Winter. This is #CPChatNow co-host, Devin Axtman, taking you along for the ride on this week’s recap. All aboard!

First, Zach pointed out this interesting scooter that looks like a car, but is sadly not street legal. We discussed the potential benefits from using the scooter.

zach tweets about a scooter that looks like a car that goes 18 miles per hour, but is not street legal. the tweet includes an image of a scooter with a body of a red car
zach tweets the scooter would cause a lot of second looks going down the street, i tweet that you would not get wet, zach tweets you could have room to put groceries in the back

Next, talk turned to Nike’s newest sneaker, the Go FlyEase, which is Nike’s newest effort at making athletic shoes accessible for disabled people.

zach asks what people think of nike's new go flyease shoes, there is a gif of someone wearing a yellow, pink, and teal shoe

Talk next turned to member’s thoughts on the usability of Nike’s new shoe:

timmy tweeted he would fall taking them off, i tweeted i think it's impossible to design a shoe for every type of disability, but at least nike tried, i tweeted i am not sure if the shoe would work for me, but it is a cool concept, blemi tweeted they look like a nightmare, zach tweeted they would have trouble with balance and he would need a hand to brace himself for balance which would make the shoes not hands free

Next, Zach asked members how winter impacts them the most:

zach asks how winter impacts people the most, i tweet it puts me on DL with hamstring tightness, but not as much in Texas, zach tweeted the DL is now the Injured List, blemi tweeted it makes her stiff, the wind and ice makes her fall, zach tweets he has been doing extra stretching to combat stiffness and that safely navigating winter elements is the worst part of winter for him

Finally, I would like to share a quote from one of the Nike team members about Nike’s recent efforts to develop shoes friendly to disabled people that Zach shared:

i tweet i feel it is impossible to design a shoe for every type of disability and at least nike is trying, timmy agreed and felt this is a really good start, zach shared a quote from the design team, "If you design for the most extreme needs, then you’re unlocking benefits for everybody. If a shoe works for someone who has no hands, then it will work for people who have two hands.”

This brings us to our Extend-The-Conversation question: What is your favorite adaptive or assistive product you have used? Please share your answer in the comments!

the extend-the-conversation question graphic: an orange, blue, and green #CPChatNow logo, extend-the-conversation question in green, What is your favorite adaptive or assistive product you have used? in black with a picture of a pink and green chameleon walking on a pink and blue vine, #CPCHATNOW in white above a green background

Thank you for reading and please join us each Wednesday on Twitter at 8 Eastern at #CPChatNow!

-Devin

#CPChatNow Recap- 01-27-2021

If you missed the live weekly cerebral palsy (CP) Twitter chat #CPChatNow Wednesday, January 27th, 2021, relax. You remain in good company! In fact only my co-host Devin Axtman and myself, Zachary Fenell, actively participated. Nevertheless, I still wanted to provide you your weekly recap. All aboard!

As the chat began Devin and I found ourselves making some references to an interest we share.

Zachary and Devin make wrestling references.

Admittedly, I am the guilty party who originated the wrestling dialogue. However, understanding the occasional lurker follows along with the chat, I figured we better get back on course. Knowing the right question can inspire lurkers to evolve into active participants.

Devin and Zachary discuss winter's impact on them.

Devin offered a huge assist in bringing the dialogue back to cerebral palsy matters, asking me how winter had been treating me. As the winter chatter progressed, we both noted the cold makes our muscles extra tight. What about you? Answer for the week’s extend-the-conversation question, “How does winter impact you the most?” Leave your response in the “Comments” section.

In addition to discussing winter, I brought up an article I recently read.

Devin and Zachary discuss a recent KARE 11 news story.

KARE 11 covered a story about how special technology helped a young girl with cerebral palsy order her own food for the first time. Their coverage impressed me because the news team managed to capture the moment’s significance oppose to emptily praising the story as inspirational. An assessment Devin agreed with. Feel free to tell us what you think in the “Comments.”

Also, remember to answer the extend-the-conversation question while commenting. Again, this week’s question asks “How does winter impact you the most?”

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks, "How does winter impact you the most?" Answer in the comments.

Perchance interacting via comments does not offer you enough engagement, join us live on Twitter each and every Wednesday. The fun starts at 8pm ET. Come interact with us in real time! Simply search Twitter for “#CPChatNow,” click the “Latest” tab, and add to the dialogue by including the hashtag in your tweet.

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

-Zachary

#CPChatNow Recap- 1/20/2021

This past week in #CPChatNow was a roller coaster as always. Members talked about doing brain surgery on mice, their funniest falls, attending sporting events, and more! Oh, and we gotta have a Bernie at the inauguration meme related to disability. This is #CPChatNow co-host, Devin Axtman, taking you along for the ride on this week’s recap. All aboard!

First, I would like to share a cool thing that a member is doing. Timmy is currently studying his PhD and shared the latest on his research:

timmy tweeted about doing mouse brain surgery, chris tweeted she volunteered the rats in her house, timmy tweeted he injects a gene so the brain cells are stimulated with light to understand how different brain regions communicate with each other in alcoholism and other addiction

Next, we have to share a Bernie at the inauguration meme related to disability from Imani Barbarin:

i shared a bernie at the inauguration meme tweeting that was funny and relatable, imani barbarin tweeted disabled people in that one accessible spot at the party with a picture of bernie sanders in a jacket and mittens at the inauguration

Next, talk turned to member’s funniest falls with members sharing various stories:

zach asks what the silliest thing is that has caused a fall tweeting he tripped on his pant leg, blemi tweeted she fell turning to return something to the fridge, smacking her head on the cabinet with juice going everywhere, i tweeted about falling while emptying an electric pencil sharpener in 6th grade which got the shavings all over me
i also tweeted about a fall when i didn't hear my fiancee warn me about a step, zach tweeted that happened when he fell during a 3 mile walk, i tweeted my cat used to sprint at my legs and trip me, chris tweets she almost tripped over her cane when she didn't see it hanging up, timmy tweets he tripped over his foot

Finally, Blemi tweeted about an awkward fall she had on some bleachers. This led to a discussion about the perils of climbing bleachers and grandstands:

blemi tweets she fell to the bottom of the bleachers at a basketball game in college, she tweets that's how people though she injured herself, zach tweets bleachers are awkward for him because it's small railings and bigger railings which makes transitions difficult, chris tweets she cannot walk up bleachers and that's what they use for seating at race tracks and her friend needed to help her at the indy 500, zach tweets the lower seating at progressive field has no railings, but the steps are wide enough that he can get to them

This brings us to our Extend-The-Conversation Question: What are your typical feelings in reaction to a fall?

extend-the-conversation question graphic: multicolored #CPChatNow logo in the upper right hand corner, extend-the-conversation question in green above What are your typical feelings in reaction to a fall? in black, there is an drawing of a man in a dark green shirt and light green pants with tan shoes falling down the stairs with his arms out and a panicked expression on his face

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

Thanks for reading!

-Devin

#CPChatNow Recap- 01-13-2021

As the years pass, the bonds formed during the weekly cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow continue to flourish. A fact evident by the chat Wednesday, January 13th, 2021. Evidence I, #CPChatNow co-founder and co-host Zachary Fenell, will present today via your weekly recap. Shall we start chugging along?

#CPChatNow participants reflect on conversations about dating held early in the chat's history.

Conversation between my co-host Devin Axtman and long-time chat regular Blemi caused me to reflect. Leaving me remembering discussions from our chat’s early years when we discussed the dating troubles a disability can cause. Dialogue Devin and Blemi actively engaged in. Now seven years later both remain engaged to their respective significant others! Proof everything comes down to meeting the right person. As Devin stated, “It sounds like a BS cliché but it’s true.”

Another participant who experienced much change and growth since our community started in December 2013, stopped by to update us on his life happenings.

Jorge Oteiza updates #CPChatNow on his life happenings.

Yes! Jorge Oteiza tweeted to update us on his graduate school adventures. An ambitious high school student when our community came into existence, Jorge has come a long way with his studies. Nevertheless, he still remains a young man who possesses a bright future.

Speaking of the future, any discussion in 2021 about the future should involve COVID vaccinations. A subject which arose during our chat January 13th.

#CPChatNow participants discuss availability of COVID vaccines.

Devin raised the topic, mentioning he received his first vaccination shot over the weekend. Others meanwhile lacked a timetable regarding when they would receive their vaccinations.

Elsewhere in the chat, I also asked a pandemic related question.

#CPChatNow participants discuss sports continuing while COVID spreads.

Upon Devin and Blemi starting to discuss hockey season, I asked if they were happy sports are going on or if they feel sports create unnecessary risk of COVID spread. Blemi answered with mixed emotions, noting she does enjoy having the distraction. What about you? Answer for the week’s extend-the-conversation question, “Are you happy sports are going on or do you feel that creates unnecessary risk of spread?”

Answer below in the “Comments.” Then mark your calendars to join us on Twitter each and every Wednesday, starting at 8pm ET.

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

-Zachary

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks, "Are you happy sports are going on or do you feel that creates unnecessary risk of spread?"
Answer below!

#CPChatNow Recap- 1/06/2021

This past week in #CPChatNow members discussed being a night owl versus a morning person, getting a smartphone, and their hopes for positive things in the new year. This is #CPChatNow co-host, Devin Axtman, taking you along for the ride on this week’s recap. All aboard!

First, there was a discussion on whether members are morning people or night owls. Chris tweeted that she is neither because she needs drugs to stay awake no matter what time:

zach asks members whether they are a morning person or night owl, chris tweets she has idiopathic hypersomnia so she is neither- she just feels permanently exhausted, zach asked if she is used to this, chris tweets she was used to it, but it has been much harder as it has gotten worse

Chris, Zach, and I all talked about being a night owl:

chris tweeted he is a night owl, zach asks if he has always been a night owl and tweets he shifted to being a morning person when working at the library, chris tweets he has not always been a night owl, but he has never been a morning person, zach tweets if he has to be up, getting up is easy, i tweet i am a night owl which makes waking up for the train hard

Next, Zach tweeted about getting a smartphone. Longtime #CPChatNow members will know that Zach has been resistant to getting a smartphone.

zach tweets he is shocking longtime members of #cpchatnow and graduating to a smartphone, he asks about must have apps, i ask him what kind while tweeting a gif of Patrick Star's head exploding
zach tweeted he got a Moto G Power, i tweeted i recommended zach get a nice case, zach tweeted he ordered a case on amazon

Finally, Zach asked about positives that members are looking forward to in 2021.

zach asked about positives they are looking forward to in 2021- tweeting he is looking forward to the release of his next book, stating he is 75% done and hopes to have it complete for editing by mid February
chris tweeted she will be saying goodbye to her gallbladder and she will be finishing her master's degree, zach tweeted wishing her good luck

This brings us to our Extend-The-Conversation Question: What is your biggest goal for 2021? Please share your answers in the comments and please be sure to join us each Wednesday at 8 Eastern on Twitter at #CPChatNow!

extend the conversation question graphic. multicolored #CPChatNow logo in the upper right hand corner, extend-the-conversation question in green above what is your biggest goal for 2021? in black, happy new year in white against a background of fireworks on a night sky, #CPCHATNOW in white text against a green background on the bottom

-Devin

#CPChatNow Recap- 12-30-2020

Wednesday, December 30th, 2020 participants in the weekly cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow gathered one last time for the year. To tell you more, I am chat co-host Zachary Fenell. Join me in saying farewell to the past year, with the final 2020 chat recap.

Recap feels like quite the appropriate word too because in many ways the December 30th chat served as a recap for the year. Chat regular Chris asked others to name the best parts of their 2020, pre-COVID or under our current pandemic situation. Answers covered both periods.

Devin recalls the best part of 2020 for him.
Zachary gives a highlight from his 2020.

My co-host Devin Axtman found a positive within the pandemic, answering he and his fiancée grew closer together during quarantine. Meanwhile my answer to Chris’ question dated back to before the pandemic. In February, I finally released my CP memoir Off Balanced in paperback form!

Devin responded to my tweet with a ringing endorsement, saying “I read it! 10/10 recommend.” If you would like to make your own opinion, checkout Off Balanced for yourself.

Enough shameless plugging from me, though. Let us talk about you. Answer for the week’s extend-the-conversation question, “What was the best part of your 2020?” Leave your response in the “Comments” section.

Besides sharing our 2020 highlights, participants discussed how having a disability prepared them to handle 2020’s bizarreness.

#CPChatNow participants discuss how having a disability helped prepared them for 2020.

The subject arose when I asked the group how their disability prepared them for the bizarre year that was 2020. Devin said he was use to staying home. Long-time chat regular Blemi also answered, saying having a disability means we are already use to being told what we can and can’t do. Adding to Blemi’s thought, I stated we are more use to adapting to situations. So, all the changes 2020 brought felt less drastic to us. Or, at least that remains my opinion.

Although 2020 has ended, we can keep the conversation going! First, remember to answer the week’s extend-the-conversation question “What was the best part of your 2020?”

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks, "What was the best part of your 2020?"
Answer in the “Comments” section!

Next, mark your calendar and join us each and every Wednesday on Twitter. The fun begins at 8pm ET.

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

-Zachary

#CPChatNow Recap- 12/23/2020

This past week in #CPChatNow occurred on Festivus, also known as Christmas Eve Eve. Members discussed their grievances about disability, a recent blog post from Tonia, their dream robotic health companion, and more. This is #CPChatNow co-host, Devin Axtman, taking you along for the ride on this week’s recap.

First, I would like to take a moment to recognize #CPChatNow’s 7th anniversary! Thank you to everyone who has participated with us!

zach tweets he realized it is the chat's seventh anniversary earlier this month. there is an image of two clinking champagne glasses with happy anniversary written above the glasses

To mark Festivus, the annual airing of grievances, members shared their grievances about disability:

zach and i discussed our grievances about disability. i tweeted my primary grievance is the amount of time it takes up with longer commutes, more appointments. zach tweeted his grievance of winter making cerebral palsy more challenging

Next, a great blog post Tonia wrote about the frustration of when accessing basic needs is not basic sparked great conversation. I tweeted about my amazement that Pee Math has an actual name. Pee Math is a concept that disabled people in particular calculate how long they can be out before going to the restroom due to access needs and not always accessible bathrooms.

tonia tweets about her latest blog post, i tweeted about pee math and stated i didn't know it was a thing, but i do it when going out in large places, tonia tweeted she didn't know the name for it, but she does it as well

Zach shared his further thoughts on Tonia’s blog and praised her for being vulnerable.

zach tweets the post is emotional and praised tonia's courage, he agreed there is a difference between being there physically and emotionally, zach stated he grew frustrated nobody asked her how to make the kitchen more accessible and that she was blamed for not doing pt, zach asked if she had time limits for using the restroom, tonia tweeted there were not time limits, but they went between classes or risked missing material

Finally, Zach was inspired by the movie Big Hero 6 to ask what members would prefer in a personal robotic healthcare companion.

zach asked members what they would want a personal healthcare companion to assist with after being inspired by the movie big hero 6. there is an image of baymax in a red and blue suit. i tweeted i want my own personal driver/transportation device, chris tweeted she wanted robotic lungs when first diagnosed with asthma, but she would now like a robotic immune system so she could program so she wouldn't be so sick

This brings us to our Extend-The-Conversation Question: What disability related task do you wish could be automatically performed for you?

the extend-the-conversation graphic: #CPChatNow logo in the upper right hand corner, extend-the-conversation question in green above What disability related task do you wish could be automatically performed for you? in black, a picture of a white hand writing a to do list on top of a calendar, #CPCHATNOW in white text against a green background

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

-Devin