My definition of disability has definitely changed. First of all, I really don’t like using the term because of its inherent negative connotation, and I would rather use different ability instead. The point where my perspective changed was actually the Aimee Mullins Ted talk. Hearing her talk about her experience as a double amputee, made me consider what really is disabling. I have come to the conclusion that it isn’t whatever it is that we are born with or the experiences that we have that make one deemed “disabled”, it is the words that people use to group people in order to place them in a “box” and separate them. Often times what is forgotten when people think about or look at people of different abilities is that those individuals are human beings. and what we all share is the essence of being a human being: the human spirit. This applies to any one that feels that they are being separated from society. Someday talking about disability isn’t a thing because that is when people will be accepted for being people. People come in all different shapes and sizes, and each person has something important to share; each has a story to tell.
If we had more time, I would have wanted to have more individual perspectives of each othe the topics that we touched, because I believe that this is when we can really learn. I would definitely consider taking more course related to disability awareness because I would hope that it would allow for the start of this image of disability to start changing it around hopefully. I think that this course might fit into something like peace and justice because it is a societal issue that surrounds the acceptance of people with different abilities. I am really glad that I decided to take this course because it gave me some perspective that I hadn’t had before surrounding this culture. I like that there was a connection with Level and I think this could be exploited more because knowledge about different ability is something that should be focused on more in Level. This relationship should definitely continue.
1. What I learned
Parkinson’s Disease was a disease I had not known too much about prior to looking into it more. I think the biggest thing that I learned from this research was in the case studies that I looked up. I had not known that pain was a symptom of PD, and how much of a factor it was in quality of life. I had also looked up how sleep is affected by Pd and that often times, sleep disorders are often diagnosed along with PD. Another thing that was touched on with our individual perspectives is how different each case can be particularly when it comes to movements often associated with PD, shaking. I think the individual perspectives were the best parts about this research and the presentation because it really shed some light on this disease. I have a personal connection with PD, so it shed some light on what some of the things my great uncle experiences.
2. My contributions
I investigated the two different case studies and put the presentation together on powerpoint and prezi. I shared what I found with Matt and we gave the presentation together on the case studies.
I think I would give myself a 4 on this presentation because I wouldn’t say that I went above and beyond in putting this presentation together but did put some good effort in doing so. The effort by everyone I would say was consistent, and we all put in an even amount. I think my biggest contribution was putting the presentation together.
I think this is a great part of the of the class because it gives us an opportunity to research more about different abilities that we may or may not have gotten a chance to get an overview of during class. I enjoyed this presentation.
For me, Casino night was different this year than in years past having gone from planning and organizing the event last year to solely being a volunteer for the night. The night was a great event that was run flawlessly. I had a great time dealing blackjack and working the bank. What is great about this event is that it is accessible and is a fun night for anyone that attends. I think what has been overlooked a little is the awareness at the event. Hindley Williams gave a great talk about awareness during the middle of the night, but it was unfortunately was not really listened to. I think that awareness should be the key to the event in years to come since how the event is run and how successful it is has been consistent for the last two years. It would be a great time to bring in some awareness having a big captive audience. But I know this is difficult because there is a big crowd. I think in order to shed light on the voices of individuals with different abilities, there needs to be smaller group discussions if not one on one, which is unfortunate. I believe the best time to get to know someone is when you are present to someone in the moment. In my one on one interactions with people and even in small group discussions, that is when I have felt like I have been been able to really get to know someone’s perspective and where they are coming from. What I have learned in those situations is perspective and how to approach new situations when I am meeting new people because those opportunities help you to be more open. And when you are more open, you have the ability to learn what it means to be a human being and who you are as a human being.