#CPChatNow Recap- 07-10-2019

To those who participate in the live cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow, each week Wednesday provides a hub for community. A place to find emotional support, plus share similar interests, common experiences, and more! The July 10th, 2019 chat proved no different. Here with the details I am chat co-host Zachary Fenell. Enjoy your weekly recap.

Unfortunately for long-time chat regular Hannah, health woes prevented her from participating July 10th.

#CPChatNow community members provide emotional support to long-time chat regular Hannah.

Community members responded to Hannah’s news by sending her sympathy. Meanwhile a power outage caused another long-time chat regular Jen to join late. Ironically the power outage helped to power the night’s discussion.

Participants began chatting about what they like to do when without power. I mentioned reading, but you can only read if enough natural light remains available. On that note, chat regular Shira brought up lighting candles. Jen said she couldn’t light a candle to save her life, instead preferring flashlights. I seconded the notion, saying flames and CP equal a nerve-wrecking combination. My co-host Devin Axtman further supported Jen’s flashlight preference.

Devin also prefers flashlights over candles.

Whether reading by flashlight, natural light, or another source multiple members in our community expressed a liking towards If At Birth You Don’t Succeed by Zach Anner. Personally, Anner’s raw honesty within If At Birth You Don’t Succeed wowed me.

#CPChatNow participants discuss If At Birth You Don't Succeed by Zach Anner.

If At Birth You Don’t Succeed stayed on my mind’s forefront as earlier in the week I finished reviewing the book for my website. Getting back to the chat though, Heather additionally gave the book praise.

Heather shares why she likes If At Birth You Don't Succeed by Zach Anner.

Heather found Anner “quite relatable and funny!” Your turn now! Keep the conversation going. Answer for the week’s extend-the-conversation question, “What cerebral palsy related book do you recommend?”

Leave your recommendation in the comments below! Then join the fun LIVE! Mark your calendar for #CPChatNow, every Wednesday on Twitter starting at 8pm ET!

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

-Zachary

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks, "What cerebral palsy related book do you recommend?"
Answer by commenting below!

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#CPChatNow Recap- 06-26-2019

On Wednesday, June 26th, 2019 participants in the live cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow discussed living with CP, emphasizing in-particular the LIVING part. Oppose to keeping the dialogue strictly CP related, members chatted about various subjects. Topics I, #CPChatNow co-host Zachary Fenell, will seek to summarize and deliver to you the best way I know how. Your weekly recap!

Recent college graduate and beloved #CPChatNow member Jorge Oteiza expressed wonderment over when he will get to put his newly obtained degree to use.

Jorge wonders when he will get to put his college degree to use.

Others expressed similar sentiments too.

#CPChatNow participants discuss the usefulness of their respective college degrees.

Personally, I mention career wise not really getting use from my degree. Nevertheless I still find the lessons I learned both inside and outside the classroom valuable. Similarly long-time chat regular Blemi said she does not particularly use her degree either, noting “Sociology and Polisci is a far cry from finance.”

Offering an insightful observation, #CPChatNow regular Shira commented “I guess it’s a reminder the path you take is rarely the one you’ll think you’ll take.” Shira herself ventures off to college for the first time this fall. She confided to #CPChatNow worries about maintaining current friendships once college begins. Qualms our community helped to ease.

Hannah reassures Shira that Shira will be able to maintain friendships.

Long-time community member Hannah reassured Shira. Hannah demonstrated her point by citing a friendship which dates back to preschool. All that leads to the week’s extend-the-conversation question, “How far back does your oldest friendship go?”

Answer below in the “Comments.” Then add to your calendar #CPChatNow. Our Twitter chat meets each Wednesday, starting at 8pm ET. I hope to tweet you soon.

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

-Zachary

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks, "How far back does your oldest friendship go?"
Reply in the comment section!

#CPChatNow Recap- 06-05-2019

Ladies and gentlemen, my name is Zachary Fenell and I am the co-host for the cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow. Yet #CPChatNow remains much more than just a Twitter chat. Our participants make up a community. What exactly makes a community, a community though? That question I am able to answer by recapping the Wednesday, June 5th, 2019 chat.

A community disbands isolation, turning seemingly odd quirks into common bonds. Like sneezing and cerebral palsy!

#CPChatNow participants discuss the worst time to have to sneeze.

To an able-bodied person, a forthcoming sneeze probably raises one major thought “Better get a Kleenex.” Living with cerebral palsy adds another level to consider. Long-time regular Blemi described sneezing as “a whole body event for me.” I related, sharing I need to brace my lower half before sneezing. Otherwise I might blow myself off balance!

A second aspect to community involves supporting each other, providing concern and encouragement when life’s balance falters. Upon my co-host Devin Axtman literally experiencing this, #CPChatNow proved ready to rise to the occasion.

#CPChatNow participants give Devin emotional support after he fell.

Devin tweeted he just took a huge fall at a restaurant, but avoided harm. Community member Chris responded, sharing surprise she has not fallen at work yet. Continuing Chris said she began using a cane back in January. Based off her zero falls at work, the cane appears quite helpful.

Meanwhile I asked Devin about the after fall. In my experience people’s reactions can prove more flustering then the actual fall. Devin explained the floor’s weird texture caused his fall to sound extra loud. The loudness left others there to look prior to resuming their own dinners.

Beyond diffusing loneliness and supplying emotional support, community stands a place you may go to ask questions. I took full advantage June 5th, posing a question to our group.

Zachary seeks insights from others for a blog post, "Defending Social Media."

Currently I am working on a blog post, seeking to highlight social media’s positives. Wanting input from others, I asked “How has social media had a positive impact on your life?”

Chris in-part replied she learned a lot about different disabilities and made friends. Should we keep the conversation going?

I agree! Answer as the week’s extend-the-conversation question, “How has social media had a positive impact on your life?” Leave a comment to respond!

Then experience the #CPChatNow community firsthand, joining the chat every Wednesday. 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 has social media had a positive impact on your life?"
Reply below in the “Comments.”

#CPChatNow Recap- 05-29-2019

Every Wednesday you can count on the live cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow for quality conversation. Or, at least I believe so. Seeing I am #CPChatNow co-host Zachary Fenell, I obviously possess a bias. Allow me to persuade you by providing you your weekly chat recap.

Quality conversation begins with thoughtful people. Those individuals comprise our community’s core. Therefore even during quieter nights #CPChatNow remains enjoyable. Wednesday, May 29th, 2019 proved one such occasion.

Exactly how enjoyable? My co-host Devin Axtman made efforts to multi-task despite his own exciting plans that night.

Devin joined #CPChatNow from Minute Maid Park, where he watched the Cubs and Astros play ball!

Devin joined #CPChatNow from Minute Maid Park, where he watched his Chicago Cubs play the Houston Astros. To use a baseball metaphor, Devin stepped up to the plate during the chat and hit a home run. The homer symbolizes the dialogue Devin sparked.

#CPChatNow participants discuss a recent news story involving insurance and medical supplies.

A feel good news story to many received a contentious outlook within our community. Devin retweeted Fox 5 DC’s post reporting about a local Home Depot building a young boy a walker. In Devin’s opinion the media missed the true story. How can the U.S. healthcare system not provide such basic equipment?

Long-time #CPChatNow regular Blemi added her input, pointing out by paying now you can save later. After all through providing treatments and devices you increase the likelihood individuals with disabilities become contributing society members. Meanwhile I highlighted a line found in the Fox 5 DC piece which struck me as odd.

Zachary points out the article never flat out said the insurance company would not pay for the walker.

I noted the story Devin shared never flat out said the insurance company would not pay for the walker. Instead the parents remained unsure whether the insurance company would cover the cost. This left me wondering, “Couldn’t you call and ask?”

My question left us contemplating the possibilities. Devin suggested perhaps the family was in the middle of the process. Further thought left me contemplating additional prospects. Maybe the parents tried calling, but kept getting put on hold. Or, they wound up talking to unhelpful representatives. Who knows?!

Rather than continuing to speculate, let us talk what we do know. Our personal experiences! Answer for the week’s extend-the-conversation question, “What have your experiences with insurance companies been?”

Comment below to answer. Then remember to join #CPChatNow 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, "What have been your experiences with insurance companies?"
Answer by commenting below!

#CPChatNow Recap- 05-15-2019

Participants in the live cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow proved anything but speechless Wednesday, May 15th, 2019. I am #CPChatNow co-host Zachary Fenell here to recap our community’s response to Speechless‘ cancellation. The subject remained the conversation’s main concentration throughout the night.

Once the topic emerged, I forwarded the extend-the-conversation question my co-host Devin Axtman originally asked in his recap for the May 8th, 2019 chat.

#CPChatNow participants discuss their favorite Speechless memories.

Devin’s had asked, “What is your favorite memory of Speechless?” Seth recalled the moment JJ met Lee, the character played by guest star Zach Anner. I praised that episode “R-U-N– RUNAWAY,” saying “that episode did wonders to show the importance of role models.” Personally though, my favorite Speechless memory differed.

Zachary and Ajani share their favorite memories of Speechless.

My favorite Speechless memory goes back to season one and the show calling out the “inspirational porn” perspective. I remembered thinking “They are going for it. Awesome!”

Meanwhile Ajani, a past guest star on the show, said his favorite memory dealt around the episode Ray tried playing basketball to win a girl. Ajani found the pain Ray went through to impress the girl believable. The more everyone talked favorite memories, the more additional memories surfaced.

Zachary and AJ continue discussing their favorite Speechless memories.

Seeing Ajani’s name made me think back to the episode he guest starred in, the season two finale “N-O– NOMINEE.” Specifically I loved the sequence involving getting JJ onstage to accept his award. Ajani commented he found that whole scene “like a page out of my life!” He proceeded to share details.

Ajani talks about how the Speechless season two finale was like "a page out of my life!"

Over the years Ajani found himself attending events at inaccessible venues. To get in Ajani relied on different people to lift him up steps. His story gave me flashbacks to a tale I heard my fellow #CPChatNow co-founders Handicap This! share before. Mike and Tim’s story entailed a multi-floor movie theater and perhaps the quickest elevator ever repaired!

Based off the abovementioned dialogue one can positively say Speechless created empathetic television. This fact raises the week’s extend-the-conversation question. “Share a Speechless scene you related to.” Do so via a comment in the “Comments” section.

Given Speechless‘ empathetic nature, there stands no surprise fans continue to actively try and save Speechless.

#CPChatNow participants discuss efforts to try and save Speechless.

One effort to save Speechless involves a change.org petition. If interested, you can sign here. Although ABC already passed on renewing Speechless, Ajani hopes the network will at least continue the series at their sister station, Freeform. Seth liked the idea, saying he wants to see a series about JJ in college on Freeform.

Regardless whether the attempts to resurrect Speechless works, a question sticks out to me.

#CPChatNow participants agree Speechless has been a success.

Curious I asked #CPChatNow if the efforts to revive Speechless go for not, would they consider the show’s run successful? Mainly I am thinking television’s future. Will Speechless influence other networks to feature shows with a prominent character who has a disability or will networks use Speechless‘ ratings as an excuse to dismiss similar shows? Nobody possessed a crystal ball to know for certain. However, participants did claim Speechless as a success.

#CPChatNow participants claim Speechless as a success for multiple reasons.

Ajani deemed the show successful, citing how Speechless wound up garnering a global reach. Paul absolutely considered the show a success, noting how “it was the first of it’s kind.” You might say Speechless holds status in television as a true pioneer! At the least, I said that!

Let us keep the Speechless conversation going at minimum one more week. Remember to answer the extend-the-conversation question, “Share a Speechless scene you related to.” Leave your answers in the comments below!

Then come by Twitter every Wednesday starting at 8pm ET to enjoy the live chat. Follow along with the hashtag “#CPChatNow.” Until then, remember. Do not blend in. Blend out!

– Zachary

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks "Share a Speecless scene you related to."
Answer below in the “Comments” section!

#CPChatNow Recap- 05-01-2019

Much like a variety pack, the live cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow offered quite the assortment Wednesday, May 1st, 2019. Rather than descriptive packaging though, you get me #CPChatNow co-host Zachary Fenell. I am here to recap the variation in discussion from our first May 2019 Twitter chat.

To start the dialogue, I asked participants what remained on their minds.

Participant Hailey tells about her plans to visit Amsterdam and more.

A familiar face to the chat Hailey surfaced to share her plans to visit Amsterdam. Additionally Hailey remained at work on meetings for her thesis. Factor in the five-hour time difference she now faces and you can easily understand her absence from #CPChatNow.

Another recognizable name stopped by the chat May 1st.

Jorge stops in and gives #CPChatNow a life update.

Soon to graduate Jorge popped in to give a life update. He mentioned competing in a Tough Mudder to round out his collegiate career. Meanwhile I told Jorge about my own competition coming up, a 10k for United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Cleveland’s Race to Empower.

Both a 10k and Tough Mudder offer their challenges. That leads to this week’s extend-the-conversation question. “How do you challenge yourself?” Leave your response in the “Comments.”

Challenges do not need to involve physical activity. As the chatter May 1st reminds us, various tasks can prove challenging.

#CPChatNow participants discuss the challenges of understanding scientific research.

For example, my co-host Devin Axtman and I each marveled at the intellectual challenges included in science. In-particular I theorized scientific vocabulary could intimidate. #CPChatNow’s resident scientist Timmy responded by saying “Then we failed as scientists when conveying our work to the general population.”

The entire science discussion emerged thanks to a potential focus chat idea. Stay tuned to our Twitter chat and our Facebook fan page for updates! Also remember to answer the week’s extend-the-conversation question. “How do you challenge yourself?”

Reply by commenting below! Then set a reminder to join us each and every Wednesday on Twitter, starting at 8pm ET.

Until next time, remember. Do not blend in. Blend out!

-Zachary

This week's extend-the-conversation question asks, "How do you challenge  yourself?"
Respond in the comments!

#CPChatNow Recap- 04-17-2019

Assorted topics arose Wednesday, April 17th, 2019 during the weekly cerebral palsy Twitter chat #CPChatNow. I am co-host Zachary Fenell, here to meet all your recap needs. So allow me to get right into the action.

Long-time #CPChatNow regular Jen refused to let a storm threat stop her from joining in on the week’s fun. Actually the storm threat wound up stimulating conversation.

#CPChatNow participants discuss their least favorite parts of bad weather.

Based off Jen’s situation, I asked participants to name their least favorite parts about storms. Jen mentioned tornadoes and sirens. Meanwhile Seth said power outages remain his least favorite part. I noted the inconveniences power outages cause. My co-host Devin Axtman added insight, pointing out power outages create difficulties medication wise too.

Another conversational spark occurred when Devin asked if anyone has seen Netflix’s new TV show Special.

Special gave Molly an emotional reaction. She cried!
Based off Blemi's recommendation, Hannah and Devin intend to watch Special.

Molly said Special made her cry, meaning the show left an emotional impact on her. Blemi also enjoyed an emotional viewing experience, explaining how she identifies so much with Ryan’s character. Words leaving Devin to exclaim he will have to watch! Hannah additionally revealed her intentions to watch Special, putting the show on her things to watch list.

How about you? Answer for this week’s extend-the-conversation question, “Do you plan to watch Special? Why or why not?” Answer in the “Comments” section!

Speaking of plans, participants shared their upcoming Easter plans.

Hannah looks forward to coloring eggs for the first time in at least five years.

Blemi raised the subject, asking if anyone possessed big Easter plans. Hannah looked forward to coloring eggs for the first time in at least five years. Simultaneously, Grace revealed a unique Easter tradition her family partakes in.

Grace's family plays family trivia on Easter.

Oppose to an Easter egg hunt, Grace’s family plays family trivia. She pondered whether the tradition extends from her family seeking an accessible alternative to the more traditional Easter egg hunt. Either way, the trivia offers a fun time.

Perhaps your family enjoys their own unique holiday tradition. Join us on Twitter Wednesday evening starting at 8pm ET and share all about your tradition! Just remember to use the hashtag “#CPChatNow” in your tweet. Finally, also remember to answer the week’s extend-the-conversation question. “Do you plan to watch Special? Why or why not?” Comment below!

Until next time, remember. Do not blend in. Blend out!

-Zachary

Keep the conversation going! Answer, "Do you plan to watch Special? Why or why not?"
Answer by commenting below!