My name is Tin Foil Hat Man, and I am pleased to be a contributing editor for The Disability Depot. You may recognize me from my own Word Press blog, Beneath The Tinfoil Hat, in which I ruminate about politics, television, as well as just about anything else that finds it’s way from underneath my Reynolds and Reynolds fashioned cap. I was asked to contribute to this blog because my wife is disabled. The view points that I will share with you are from that of the partner, or caregiver of a loved one who happens to be disabled. Periodically, you will see articles from me with some helpful tips to not only help with caring for your partner, but caring for yourself as well. My intent is to convey that life isn’t over because your loved one is disabled, it’s merely different. Depending on the severity of your partner’s disability, some adjustments and concessions in your everyday life will need to be made, but it’s still quite possible to enjoy life. It may be as simple as continuing to do the little things that make your life together completely awesome or it may be as big as redefining your activities all together. Either way, as long as you and your partner work together as a team and regularly evaluate what works, life can still be good.
My partner became seriously disabled with Fibromyalgia and ME (what most of us in the states know as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or CFS) about seven years ago. Since then, our life has been about adjustment. Some days, she is able to care for herself and even take care of some household chores. Other days I have to step up and care for everything. Sometimes after these stretches I forget to consider how she feels and hover over her like a mother hen, earning her ire for impinging on her autonomy; one thing I hope to help others avoid by sharing my own experiences.
But what about me you ask? What’s my story? For starters, I live with my wife, Capricious, in Kentucky with our grumpy needy cat, Athena. I enjoy reading, writing, and watching way too much tv. In addition, I love going to see live theatre and music, as well as being an avid football fan and borderline history zealot. By the way, did I mention that I’m a disability candidate? I have been suffering from a rare disorder in my back for decades, called Spondylolisthesis: A condition that causes one vertebrae to slide off it’s disc, and onto the disc below it. It hurts like hell, causes my legs and feet to go numb, and just wreaks all kind of havoc from my lower back to my toes. I quit working this past May, and currently have a disability case of my own pending. I will be sure to share my experience as the case progresses, as well as explore what it’s like to live in a duel disability home.
At any rate, we both hope you find this blog helpful. Whether you’re disabled, or the partner of someone who is disabled, this blog is for you!