Let’s Expand Possibility!

This Blog is an extension of my life, my dedication to sharing my story and others stories, passions, pitfalls, triumphs and tragedies.

 

As the title announces the primary topic of possibility, the title used to reference just disability. And although this Blog focuses on  creating greater and grander possibilities in life, I’d like to expand the topic to include all facets of a passions, pitfalls, triumphs and tragedies.

 

Like chocolate or potato chips, from flower to color, picking just one is difficult. And this applies to my life which may or may not be due to my natal astrological sign of Libra.

 

I believe we are beings with many gifts, talents and interests.

 

With that in mind, this Blog will expand to include and introduce some of my and your varied interests as I invite you to share your passions at Living Life to the Best of Your Possibility.

 

One of my passions is Mother Nature. You may look up and older Blog for children I had created to connect children with the environment in a positive way. Our community garden, still growing strong by the way, held the lead role of www.victoriakaloss.wordpress.com

 

Today, I’d like to expand the topic by introducing your to two men, Chris and Steve Agnos, who are doing tireless work to help the environment. I contacted them at their website

 

http://sustainableman.org/

 

for the right to use their website and movie in my Blog.

They replied:

 

“Permission granted! Really you can repost anything we do on your blog. All that is important to me is that ideas spread.”

 

So, yes, they are enthusiastic and completely devoted.

 

Their movie, “How Wolves Change Rivers” was originally forwarded to me from my father who has become a moderate environmentalist over the years. The movie is truly eye-opening and demonstrates interconnectedness between all species and natures balance.

This is the link for the four plus minute film—

http://www.filmsforaction.org/watch/how-wolves-change-rivers/

 

Living Life to the Best of Your Possibility means all of your life, all of your aspirations, dreams, interests, pet-peeves-

because after all, life is packed with a multitude of possibilities.

 

I am glad to share Chris and Steve Agnos’ work with you, share my passion for nature.

 

Hope you enjoy the movie, popcorn, chocolate and potato chips are optional ;)

 

 

Copyright March 2014:

Living Life to the Best of Your Possibility

by Victoria Kaloss

 

Parents & Caretakers, You Have the Power Too!

Dear Parents and Caretakers;

You all have more power than you know.
You are all more capable than you give yourself credit for.
You have the ability to create a fuller, easier day-to-day life by learning one important life skill:

‘Asking for help’

During those times when you may be feeling something may be too challenging for you to take on or you may be worrying about how to reach an important goal –ask someone for help.

In my experience, when my grandmother had been placed in a newly credited rehabilitation center, we all had concerns about her future. Grandma had never experienced a medical set-back and she needed help in understanding the rehabilitation process, hospital in-patient life and she needed comfort to reduce any undue stress and worry.

As a family we collectively and individually asked staff members questions concerning her treatment plans and long-term goals. And more so, questions Grandma seemed too intimidated to ask for herself. She experienced overwhelm early in her treatment process and we responded by alleviating the initial shock and disorientation.

She acclimated and over time, she became more empowered to ask for help with greater ease and confidence.

Asking for help is both an individual and team sport.

You loved one has specific needs, goals, aspirations and
You have specific needs, goals and aspirations.
Learning to ask for help for yourself is pivotal. Just as the flight attendants ask the parent or guardian to place the oxygen mask on you first so you can be healthy to provide assistance for your child and charge. Your functioning optimally increases your loved one’s success rate.

You are important and during those difficult, challenging moments, you can ask for help for yourself as well as on behalf of your child, parent – loved one.

Learning to ask for help is a universal life skill not selective for the disabled or caretakers of the disabled.

Learning to ask for help is a UNIVERSAL life skill.

Asking for help means you are finding solutions to make your life stronger, easier and successful.

Asking for help allows you the opportunity to use resources available to you to make your life the best life possible.

You can turn to others for assistance, people who can do their best to accommodate your/child’s specific needs. Remember, you have needs to function in the world. Everyone has them.

By learning to ask for help, you can improve your life by leaps and bounds.

Here is a short list of people you can begin to learn to ask for help from:

Your child/parent/charge
Family members
Teachers
Guidance counselors
Doctors
Nurses
Friends
Physical therapists
Occupational therapists
Your local township
Your local county

You don’t have to carry your troubles on your shoulders alone. You do not have to fill your time and fill your mind trying to figure out how to accomplish a goal.

Ask for help.

You have the power.

Your possibilities are endless.

Living Life to the Best of Your Possibilities
copywrite 2014 Victoria Kaloss

You Got the Power!

Dear Kids;

You all have more power than you know.

You are all more capable than you give yourself credit for.

You have the ability to create a fuller, easier day-to-day life by learning one important life skill:

‘Asking for help’

During those times when you may be feeling something may be too challenging for you to take on or you may be worrying about how to reach an important goal –ask someone for help.

For myself, I needed to ask for help when I planned a vacation. I needed a wheelchair in the airport because I can’t always walk far and I certainly can’t run to the gate to make my flight.

Recently, I had been in the airport security line and asked for help untying my work-boots. My companion helps me to put them on since I can’t bend down to tie shoes. The woman in charge of security told me that I do not have to take off my shoes anymore in the security line at airports.

I was stunned! The shoes-on-shoes-off-shoes-back-on experience had been a source of stress when I traveled.

She said the officials at the TSA have a new policy:

If I tell the security agent that I can’t take off my shoes, the agent is then required to swipe my shoe with cotton square dipped in a chemical that they put in a device to determine of the shoe has any dangerous substances or residue on them. Once the machine clears your shoe, you are free to move along – shoes still tied.

This is a new policy. If I hadn’t asked for help taking my shoes off, I would never have learned so quickly and easily about the up-to-date change. By asking for help, I have saved myself and my traveling companion time. Asking also saved us both from one of our biggest stresses while traveling.

Learning to ask for help is a life skill.

Most people believe if asking for help means you are weak, not good enough.

They are greatly mistaken.

Asking for help means just the opposite, you are finding solutions to make your life stronger, easier and successful.

There is no shame in asking for help.

There is only honor.

You are not swallowing your pride.

Pride means decency, esteem, opportunity and character.

Asking for help enhances your pride.

Asking for help allows you the opportunity to use resources available to you to make your life the best life possible.

You can turn to others for assistance, people who can do their best to accommodate your specific needs. Remember, your special needs are simply adaptations to the outside world. Everyone has them.

Some people have food allergies and require special diets. Some people have a broken leg and need crutches and extra time to get from one place to the other. Some people need service dogs and some people need service monkeys. Yes, it’s true; service monkeys.

By learning to ask for help, you can improve your life by leaps and bounds.

Here is a short list of people you can begin to learn to ask for help from:

Parents

Family members

Teachers

Guidance counselors

Doctors

Nurses

Friends

Physical therapists

Occupational therapists

Your local township

Your local county

You don’t have to carry your troubles on your shoulders alone.

You do not have to fill your time and fill your mind trying to figure out how to accomplish a goal.

Ask for help.

You have the power.

Your possibilities are endless.

You are living your life to the best of your possibility.

Copyright Victoria Kaloss; Living Life to the Best of Your Possibility 2014

Joy and Peace to All

Noel at Sunrise 2

Image

A Poem & A Prisoner

English: Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg, Gaute...

English: Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg, Gauteng, on 13 May 1998 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Two of my favorites; poetry and Nelson Mandela.
I discovered this gem on youtube

Enjoy!

Nelson Mandela & Me

In honor of Nelson Mandela, I am reposting my first work after my 2012 sabbatical. When I returned to writing, I had changed the name to ‘Living Life to the Best of Your Disability.’  Changing my Blog’s name again to the name you see today. No matter how many name changes, Nelson Mandela was my inspiration for moving forward in my life, his story helped build the foundation of my mission.

Sometimes I need to go back to the beginning to reach the next step–

Hope you enjoy.

 

EQUALITY

 

Today seems most appropriate to launch my new blog, Living Life to the Best of Your Disability. The theme streaming across the pixels and airwaves and memories of iconic leader Martin Luther King, Jr. of equality cradles hope for authentic equality and inclusion of the disabled worldwide.

I have taken a yearly sabbatical. My post will provide the excitement, the lulls and the realizations I discovered along my path toward living my life to the best of my disability.

On this day, a day marked with beginnings and endings-I am grateful for all who came before, are already here and are yet to come on this magical journey.

EPIPHANY!

“You pick.” She placed the remote control on our shared living room throw pillow.  The top-heavy plastic dipped in my grasp until I garnered physical dexterous command over the device.  I scrolled down our saved DVR list.  Some movies we saved for over one year either too violent for our senses or too juvenile to admit for public eyes.  Saved for over six months, I hit “Invictus.”

Finally ready to engage in the story of two men cultivating cooperation through sport to shift a national perspective.  The movie brought me to tears but tears had become a part of my everyday routine.  Like a pregnant woman craves grapes or cinnamon toast, I craved tears.

For what reason, I had no idea.

Release, maybe.

Rebirth, possibly.

A pregnant woman knows a child is forthcoming.

Me? Clueless.

Invictus is a poem.  During Nelson Mandela’s twenty-seven year incarceration for crimes against South Africa, Invictus provided him on-going, life-sustaining inspiration.

Invictus (written by William Ernest Henley circa: 1875)

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

Poetry is a language close to my heart.  I understood poetry before I understood modern English.  Poetry is my first love. Having studied American Literature, I had less exposure to English Literature. I turned to the Internet and printed Invictus.  The rhyming message uplifts my mind, body and soul.  The hard copy rests beneath my mouse pad.  Semi-circular coffee rings along the corners lend an abstract tilt to the four stanza piece. The poem is forever at my fingertips, in eternal eye view.  The movie inspired in part from a century long poem looped across the premium cable channel and I watched every moment I could.

Cried every time in all the same places where injustice or poverty or enlightenment or understanding or triumph leapt across the screen.  During each ending, I danced to the rhythmic music as succinct as the movie title’s stanzas.

And I never danced.

Not at weddings, unless I was a bridesmaid upholding a time-honored tradition.

Not at dance clubs in my twenties.

Not at Writer’s Conference After-Parties.

Nope.

My arthritic body did not move properly.  No dancing~~until Invictus.

Swaying my replaced joints anticipating the start of the film the words, ‘Based upon the novel Playing the Enemy by John Carlin, scrolled down the screen.  I scribbled the title on a piece of junk mail.

But who was I kidding.

I hadn’t read a book in over a year.  I used to read insatiably. I’d changed, somehow, somewhere along the calendar year I stopped reading. Instead, I made plans away from the cushy couch and my bed strewn with tossed pillows in all shapes and sizes to prop my replaced shoulders and inflexible fingers and wrists to read more comfortably or at least with less physical pain and stiffness fallout.

I used to write insatiably too. I dropped blogging in a conscious effort to live my life to the best of my disability.

Excursions.  Fun, educational and physically challenging mini-trips.  Overnight stomps in Times Square, Cape May, East Stroudsburg, PA.

Diagnosis; Adult/Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis. Rheumatoid since infancy at nine months old.  Crippling pain defined my childhood.  Overhearing the doctor prepare my mother that the best he could expect for me was life in a wheelchair sounded like the vacuum packed seal of my Fate.  By eleven years old, medicine offered me and my family no hope for a better future.

By forty-five, I decided to create opportunities to validate hope for my present and my future. Excursions worked.

Then Key Largo called.

Yes, a restful, relaxing, extended vacation with my sister was the booked ticket.  We both needed rejuvenation.  She filled her carry-on with books.  I placed the library book Playing the Enemy in the front zippered suitcase pocket.

Sometime between the glorious sunset and the last half of the book, the epiphany sang inside my head like a chorus of angels.

Nelson Mandela never denounced his color, he embraced himself fully.  Instead, he denounced the oppression of his people, fully.

He transcended his rage, fury, anger to transcend his country.

Therein incubated my unborn truth.

I spent a great deal of energy throughout my life pretending not to be disabled, masking my deformities, hiding an aspect of myself from myself and the world.

I spent a great deal of energy enraged by the injustices endured by the disabled population.  The invisible, unheard, neglected handicapped population sustaining injustices never seen or spoken of by either the able-bodied or disabled.

With positive excursions under my belt, I anchored myself within this seraphim symphony.

I felt ready to release the anger.

Ready to unleash my authenticity.

And the damning weight of half a century melted like a consecrated candle.  A blessing.  A new way to move forth within the world.  A rebirth.  I am free to fully embrace my disability and denounce the oppression of my people.

Repeat.

Repeat.

Repeat.

Believe.

Now the true work begins.

Post-Script: One Step Past the Introduction and One Step Closer to the Belief.

As I had done months ago, I discovered the poem Invictus on the Internet www.wikipedia.com.  In my copy and paste protocol for this Introduction, I chose focused upon the article in its entirety. Not simply the four stanza poem.  I read the brief history of the poet.  I’ve included the newest research from www.wikipedia.com for the richness and synchronicity toward the theme of Epiphany!

Background

At the age of 12, Henley contracted tuberculosis of the bone. A few years later, the disease progressed to his foot, and physicians announced that the only way to save his life was to amputate directly below the knee. It was amputated when he was 17.[1] Stoicism inspired him to write this poem.[2] Despite his disability, he survived with one foot intact and led an active life until his death at the age of 53.

The poem was written in 1875 in a book called Book of Verses, where it was number four in several poems called Life and Death (Echoes).[3] At the beginning it bore no title.[3] Early printings contained only the dedication To R. T. H. B.—a reference to Robert Thomas Hamilton Bruce (1846–1899), a successful Scottish flour merchant and baker who was also a literary patron.[4] The title “Invictus” (Latin for “unconquered”[5]) was put in The Oxford Book of English Verse by editor Arthur Quiller-Couch.[6][7]

The Universe has game, right?

**Published by Insights, Vol. Three, Number Two, Summer 2012

 Invictus under my mousepad and my fingertips within reading glasses field of vision

Invictus Under My Fingertips

Excursion PhotographsCape May, NJ                                                                                                                                                            CAPE MAY, NJ

HARRY POTTER EXHIBITIONHarry Potter Exhibit-Times Square, NY, NY

Times Square Hotel Room with a View                      Times Square Hotel Room with a View

Key Largo Sunset (640x480)                                                                                                                                                  Key Largo, FL

Maryland, my Maryland

Maryland, my Maryland

East Stroudsburg, PA                                                                                                                                                   East Stroudsburg, PA

Me in Key Largo with my 'epiphany smile on.'

Me in Key Largo with my ‘Epiphany! smile on.’

Be at Peace, Be Free – Nelson Mandela

P1050996 (1024x768)

Thank you for reigniting my soul,
Thank you for igniting my truths,
Thank you for sharing your truths,
Thank you for casting light upon my path,
Thank you for sharing your deepest shadows,
Thank you for reuniting me with my shadows,
Thank you for sharing the light upon the world-
Thank you, for being a rock upon the Earth,
Thank you for igniting the flame for humanity

I am and will always be grateful for your eternal gifts
to humankind.

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