Monday, December 15, 2014

The Wandering Quad shall wander again!

It's offical!

My flights are booked and my nerves are ecstatic. Feb 18th 2015 at 11:30am, I will be sitting with sparkling anticipation as the engine gears up to roar in that inertia filled excitement of lift-off. And off to Southeast Asia will I go.

I've never been to this part of the world before. I am all at once thrilled, nervous, and ripe with extreme anticipation. I know nothing about where I'm going. Just vague ideas of gorgeous beaches with jutting rocks covered in lush vegetation that stand proudly in clear azure waters. Of warmth and jungles and unique temples. Of unfamiliar wildlife and new peoples and language. Of incredible foods and wild parties. Of new friends and new experiences.

I cannot explain to you how much this excites me. How this unknown thrills me. I feel like a kid on Christmas, and I so desperately want to rip open the packaging and learn what's in store for me. And every step is a new gift revealing its treasures. Maybe I'm wrong... maybe I won't even get to see some of the things I think are out there. But this doesn't worry me. Not in the slightest. This is part of the fascination of adventure. I cannot wait to learn.

For two months I get to wander around the other side of the world in my limping fashion. For two months I will spend every day excited to try something new. For two months I will be alive in every way.

My god... am I there yet?

Countdown to Southeast Asia : 64 days 23 hours 42 minutes.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

feminists are NOT stupid

I'm not liking this thing that's going around... "fuck feminism" .. "stupid feminists" ...

Feminism is much more than one group of people who disliked his shirt, and many feminists have extremely valuable and important things to say about serious issues, such as sexual exploitation, degradation, abuse, rights restriction and more that STILL exist in this world.

We are fortunate that we live in a place where we don't have to face these challenges to nearly as severe a degree anymore, (any why? because of feminism!) so it's easy to assume feminists are only whiny little creatures complaining about silly things since topics like this shirt are only thing that's close enough to your nose to smell it - whatever your opinion is about it.

But feminism isn't stupid. Feminists aren't stupid. They are a powerful and necessary force.

I wish the rape, child prostitution and other very serious and abhorrent things that are, as we speak, occurring around the world were getting highlighted through media this intensely, because I feel it reflects more truthfully on what feminism is, what it stands for, and why it is 100% still needed.

Right now, as you're reading these words, a little girl across the world has a man on top of her, raping her, because she was sold into sex slavery. Think about that, know that this is happening RIGHT NOW. Then tell me that we should fuck feminism.

A good ted talk to help remind you:

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Musings: feeling shifted

I woke up this morning feeling bizarrely like my whole world had moved just a few millimeters. Everything feels slightly off. It's as if all the items in my house have been picked up, contemplated, and placed back down. That someone had driven my car during the night and tried to return everything to it's original position but couldn't get it quite right. I even had to adjust my mirrors.

Even at work I feel oddly displaced, as if I don't belong here. That I am a stranger in my own life.

How odd, this persistant flux. It cannot be real, but I swim in the fantasy of it wondering if there's meaning behind it - some subconcious thing my mind is questing to tell me.

Or, maybe I just dreamed too much last night.. and it's time for a coffee.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

thoughts: the creation of my stories

It's interesting how some of the prose comes out instinctively and is fully fleshed. But mostly it starts as mainly the bones of the story, with soft malleable flesh weakly holding on. Then I add to it, over time.. make it healthier. Add clothes and hair and nails and teeth. Until it is fully formed.

Every once in a while, though, I notice I've accidentally left out an entire limb, and must quickly work to add that so the story doesn't fall over.

And accessories.. Oh, the accessories. I could accessorize forever. That will be the challenge. Keeping my story tastefully dressed. Clean lines and pleasing colours.

I feel almost a sculptor. Using words as clay. I am a child at play.

Friday, October 31, 2014


Holy crap almighty my allergies are going ape-shit. It scares me sometimes. I'm afraid I've grown allergies to things I love. Natural scents, like essential oils or fragrant cooking spices.

I really hope it's only because I haven't cleaned my window blinds in a long time and the accumulated dust is taking its revenge on me.

Cross your fingers with me.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Yeah... I try as best as I can to be emotionally supportive. And they're holding up pretty well.. But you can see it. The pain dwelling in their eyes, looming precariously behind the shock of it all. He occasionally erupts in barely contained anger... but holds it back. He still hopes... for.. something.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Does everyone dream of walking again? - video from channel 4 news and my thoughts

This interview makes a good point. It's not just about walking, the issue is much more complex. My personal thought is that this advancement has amazing potential for the future, but I can understand completely, especially AS an ambulatory quad, why these ladies aren't jumping at the bit to partake in this. If this discovery meant perfect healthy walking and function, sure. However, as they say, this current study is not there yet. For these women, and a lot of other people I'm certain, the most important thing is quality of life. I can tell you that walking with permanent limp, tone, spasticity and pain, is not ideal; even though I'm technically closer to "normal". And I have mentioned that I do wish I'd accepted the help of a chair, and may even begin to use one now. Being visibly 'closer to normal' is not the goal. Having the best quality of life by reducing pain and fatigue as well as finding ways to ensure independence is paramount for a spinal cord injured person. Being able to stand up and take a few steps does not equal that.

And besides the physical act of walking, there is a whole lot more involved when it comes to SCI. Bowel and bladder function, sexual function, loss of sensation, hyper sensation, pain (nerve and musculoskeletal), to name a few.

Still, this phenomenal advancement does seem to promise help is on the way, even if it's not perfect, yet. It does seem to be a remarkable 'step' in the right direction. (haha, so punny :p)

And I must admit that I do hope with further studies, tests, and trials, we WILL find in a true cure for SCI.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

An article in BBC news - Lesser-known things about being a wheelchair user

The first point is actually a large part of the reason I declined the help of a wheelchair when I need it. I've already had to deal with my share of ignorance with people telling me things like I'm 'faking it' or 'just being lazy'. It is incredibly frustrating and hurtful to try and have to justify yourself for something you didn't chose, and would much rather live without.

Although I can understand how there are those out there who genuinely do abuse the help that is given to disabled people, be careful and remain tactful. Because the majority of us are truly in need, even if it's for reasons one may not understand or are unaware of.

In my conversations with friends in chairs, dealing with ignorance comes up a lot. Have a read and make sure you're not one of the people we bitch about ;)

Friday, September 19, 2014

Musings: My thoughts themselves are slippery beasts. And try as I might I cannot grip them, slick as soap.

My thoughts themselves are slippery beasts. And try as I might I cannot grip them, slick as soap. Could I cast a net and tame them still... tame the fire that burns its fill. My teeth, beg to be sunk. Deep into the meat and marrow of.. what is the word for it? Nirvana? I live to exist in the cusp. The brink. The tip of a moment. A crest so rushing and powerful it removes, sheds... releases and cries.. cries to stay. But, forcibly thus, must be fleeting in order to exist. The true addicts nightmare. Never sated but for the extreme. And I am me. I am me. Forgive me not. I am me enough.


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Musings: Instinctual greed, tied roughly to the perpetual blossom of boredom.

It's amazing the ebb and flow of my personal reality. Everything surges then sways, lulls then ignites. Nothing is ever constant for me. I wouldn't even know how to exist that way. I wonder what it's like; to live somewhat serenely. No major ups, no major downs. On a steel thick lake instead of this capricious ocean.

I wonder if I need instability. I have an instinctual greed for more tied roughly to the perpetual blossom of boredom. The constant demand to change / create / experience something new, may as much be lifeblood to me as it is torture. As exquisitely frustrating as it is bewitchingly full of pleasure.

I wonder if comfortable, content, complacent... are words that could ever be attached to my name. And if they could, would I be happy?

Or does my quixotic nature require a certain level of discontent, a certain amount of emotional upheaval in order to inspire and unite the chaotic worlds within myself to settle almost magically into something that gives me satisfaction like nothing else I've ever felt.

Deep. Pure. Satisfaction.

As fleeting as it is.

It is a spark flashing bright on a dark night, and eyes grow wide and radiant with wonder at the sight, before it - inevitably - cools and fades into the darkness.

I feel sometimes that I am that spark... always lusting to burn. Only ever briefly lit.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

framed solely for me

These glasses are weird. Sometimes, when I am speaking to people, it feels as if nothing is real. I'm looking through a frame at a picture of reality and I am not actually experiencing the moment before me; I am observing art, in action. If I suddenly stare at you contemplatively during a conversation without any real provocation, it may be likely that I am imagining you then as a piece of art. As a structure meant to be remembered in more than just experience - but in permanence. And yet, as this moment is fleeting, and my glasses only reflect sharper reality, my mind slowly wraps around your fading moment and attempts to embrace it, framed solely for me.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Beautiful Quiet

Beautiful quiet.. in an absence of stimulation that you would not chose for yourself. I have revelled in the joy of quiet while my music blares loudly, or in a calm but empassioned coversation that engages me wholly. It is when the cacophony of existence dims and the wrong levels fade and the right levels rise and all I am left with is sweet contentment in a harmonic state of sound that is right for me.

Quiet... beautiful quiet.. is nourishment for my soul.

I am starving.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

perfect hugs

There's this beautiful moment when you hug someone, just the right way, and it feels like your hearts connect. A perfect warmth blooms in that connection. A sudden peace, warmth, and safety.

I think my favorite hugs (aside from the classic loved ones, of course) are those with strangers, and it happens unexpectedly, and it's wholly heart-warming and completely innocent in its perfect connection. And for one moment you feel as if you could - more than that you want - to hold, this stranger, forever.

And then you back away, almost shy and embarrassed, at the deepness you felt briefly for someone you barely know.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Challenges of a choice-abundant society: a Ted Talk and my thoughts.

(I apologize, I could not get the talk to embed directly here in my blog, but the link above is to the talk
Barry Schwartz: The paradox of choice.)

An excellent talk highlighting the challenges of a choice-abundant society. I've believed this for years, as this concept first punched me in the face when it was suddenly time to decide what career I was supposed to pick.

Overwhelmed by option I swirled in a chaotic torrent of angst and confusion. Still, to this day, (aside from my passion for music), I have no idea what I want to be when I grow up. Every time I start to think about schooling and what to take to have professional value, my eyes twitch and go wibbly as the many courses, careers and directions batter my senses. Before I know it, I've shut down and go back to my day job. I could be anything, and so I am nothing.

I've felt this way over a myriad of things in my life and and observed this in the people around me.

Then I experienced something new. After my accident I found myself saying to people that although it was one of the greatest traumas of my life, for the first time in as long as I could remember I felt I had purpose. Direction. I had no choice but to fight for recovery. I had one path, no other. And it was oddly, (even though painfully), deeply satisfying.

Schwartz highlights that experience through his talk, and I really appreciate the smaller details he also touches on as well - like his anecdote about the soccer game and the phone. This abundance of choice, even in the smallest of measures, is affecting our psychology in a negative way.

Again, I experienced this when one day I lost my phone and for one week I was without an alternative. And for one week I felt peace. I could no longer constantly check facebook; even the desire was erased simply because there was no option to do so. I was no longer curious if someone messaged me while I was out. I needed not worry if someone was trying to get a hold of me because what could I do anyway? And I enjoyed the scenery of the world, because I had no nagging thought in the back of my mind to bury my head into my phone to double check that random (and likely unimportant) thing through the internet.

The decrease in stress was physically palpable.

Now, I'm not certain what the solution to this is. Unfortunately in the talk he provides no real solution. Simply 'lowering ones expectations' is definitely a task much easier said than done. And changing the world of marketing is a bit of a mighty task. But I believe that if we could make a change, if we could reduce choice and options to a more reasonable level, there would be a massive change in levels of happiness on a grand scale.

I wonder what we could do...?

Food for thought, anyway.

Monday, June 16, 2014

a starved artist - to those who have felt the block

A starved artist; ironically one who cannot get out of inside themselves what fills them up so completely. Stuffed to the brim they have to expel in a constipated need for release. And stubborn thought blocks. Astringent is the cat piss disgust for the lack of an incapacitating, revelating, urge creating, tempest elating,   BUrst… of …  …nothing. These words still lack the meaning of my creating and every intention that arises, falls..  .. and it’s hard to catch breath. The sudden sensation of emptiness oxymoronically surges, as if walls are reverberating and everything’s spacing, and there is nothing left to touch because.. A starved artist… bursting with need and yet full of emptying.. emptying.. nothing. There is no cessation to this sensation, this raw nerve expulsion of temptational transaction. .. I’m left limp in subtraction. Is wisdom blind in this abstraction? ...I am hungry with greedy need.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

stale air

The air in the office grows stale. And with my heart pattering up in my chest I feel my legs twitch subconsciously towards the door. The calm practical letters on paper are no longer pacifying my burgeoning need. Like constant whispers itching to be heard, the wind blows in through the door teasing my senses with the scents of possibility. My hair swirls, pulling me, but I am latched to the table beneath the weight of this responsibility.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

I want to eat ALL the food.

Kinda having one of those moments where I'd like to be as fat as freaking possible. I want to eat ALL the food.

This is when my taste buds starts negotiating with my brain..

"Listen, I know we're not EXACTLY hungry. But, we DO need to eat. And, well, you haven't eaten in hours right? So lets think this through. We SHOULD eat now. I mean, we don't want to pass out from hunger, do we? And, c'mon, what's the harrrrrm in indulging just a little?
Okay. Okay, okay I know. We did indulge yesterday. But, really, that was only a little. Just a touch, really. And, we can always start tomorrow; that 'proper' diet you keep nagging about? We already did it for a week. So obviously we're capable of committing. Let's start that again tomorrow. But tonight, let's relaxx. Last time, I promise.
And you know I'm absolutely certain of the scientific proof that if you shove as much crap into you in a short a time as possible, only a tiny amount actually affects your body. The rest gets pooped out, right? The body simply can't absorb that much. It's fact. Of course it's fact. So, if we're gonna do it - eat something delicious - we should do it now. Especially since this is the last time and all. Last chance.
So, you see? It's so clear. We need food; it's been a few hours. And since we've already indulged a little, it's better to just finish up the trend because we won't even absorb it if we happen to accidentally overindulge just a squidgum more. AND!!!! .. And, we'll start our proper eating habits tomorrow! Right!? We WILL!
See?? Such a winning scenario. C'mon.... pick up that phone..... order that delivery... c'monnnnn... you know it's the right choice."


And all the while your body is nodding along with the air-headed precision of a stoned and starved orphan and conveniently decides NOT to pipe in with any comments about how quality over quantity will make a huge difference in all scenarios presented. Ie, you'd feel a shit-ton better if you just ate something healthy and delicious.

Goddamn taste buds and body.




Fuck, I think I've just convinced myself to order delivery.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014


I stumbled and scraped my knee. In a brief moment of vulnerability and need, I called out, but I did not use my voice. And so I was quietly surprised when no hand reached out to stable me. No warmth of human touch. It made me stumble twice, really. How silly. Fortunately it is just a scratch. Small and likely more self perceived as something at all significant. But a fresh sting may blossom bright in a quick moment before it fades imperceptibly back into the shroud of faded memory. Here I blush... and put band aids on. Chin up. Only one person saw me fall. Time, now, to convince myself I don't care. How silly, this. I still have not spoken, have I?

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

e.e. cummings

it is so long since my heart has been with yours

shut by our mingling arms through
a darkness where new lights begin and
since your mind has walked into
my kiss as a stranger
into the streets and colours of a town—

that i have perhaps forgotten
these hurrying crudities
of blood and flesh)Love
coins His most gradual gesture,

and whittles life to eternity

—after which our separating selves become museums
filled with skilfully stuffed memories

Thursday, March 20, 2014

squatathon win

So, at the gym I've been doing squats like mad. Mainly because I want to have a killer tush. And although I'm still far from reaching that goal, I discovered something unexpected today. I squatted right down to where I was balancing on the balls of my feet and my bum was basically resting right above my heels.

And then I stood back up.

This, for the last 5 1/2+ years, is a movement I could NOT do (at all, ever) without help, either by bracing myself and pulling myself up on something, or giving up entirely and trying to stand up a different way.

I keep randomly doing it to make sure I'm not dreaming lol.

Go bloody squats go. Whether or not I get my dream tush.. I'm gonna call this one a major effin win.


Monday, March 10, 2014

The uniqueness of a home

Do you ever wonder what someones home looks like?

I think about that, as I arrange or rearrange the things in my place. That when someone comes over they'll go, "Huh, so this is what it looks like in Kristina's inner world."

And admittedly, I contemplate your world, too. Not in a judgmental way, but with a subtle curiosity that I like being sated. I like seeing how people create their space. I like knowing who's intent on keeping things perfectly clean or who doesn't give a fuck about the clutter. (Or that common combination thereof - 'Oh, pardon the mess! Really, now... I don't live like this! I swear.' - When we all do. Pardon the few.)

I like noticing the art on your walls. What you've chosen and the reasons you chose it. Or even the lack of...

I love the definition we consciously or subconsciously physically portray. Some of us set up our home to be shown to others and some of us make it uniquely personal, as if no one would ever see. Most of us, I suspect, make a hodge-podge of both. Or perhaps don't even bother. They don't have the want or the time.

So, it can be a special thing, no? Being invited into a home. Invited into where most people consider it their 'sacred' space. Maybe I'm stepping off the existential platform here, but I think a persons home, in its entirety, contains a unique sort of art. Whether or not they put serious effort into the creation of that physical home, it is where they live. It is HOW they live. It is quite likely, and with honesty, the physical manifestation of a persons life.

I find that fascinating.

I enjoy being allowed to see that canvas of you...

How do you live, I wonder?


I'm never getting invited into anyone's home ever again am I?