Tag Archives: sisters

The Mother of Invention

This weekend I got to spend some time with my twin. I have not seen her in quite a while because she lives in another state and has a large family, which makes it hard to travel. The distance sucks, but we talk a lot, and even when we don’t there is a bond that no one can touch. I think it would be awesome if every disabled person in the world had a twin. Unfortunately that is not something we can market on the UNlimiters’ website.

My twin has been an invaluable part of my UNlimited life. When we were young she was my constant companion and I would work hard trying to keep up with her. In turn, she would adapt her play for me or help me do something. We were always conniving, her and I. I remember when we had a bunk bed as kids. We both really wanted me on the top bunk, so she pushed and I pulled and somehow we got me to the top bunk. We were thrilled; but then, of course, we couldn’t get down from the top bunk.Then there was the time she tied my trike to her bike and tried to tow me along behind her. It worked for about 5 seconds before I tipped over and was almost hit by a car.

She wasn’t always nice, though. We may have been twins but we were still sisters, and sisters can be mean sometimes. She didn’t always enjoy having me tag along. Sometimes our parents forced her to take me with her in the wagon or my stroller; on these occasions she would take me far enough that I was out of sight and earshot of the house, then leave me stranded while she went to play. She also liked to make me pee my pants when she was feeling extra mean.

These days, she has given up on most of her mean tricks. She is still my best partner when it comes to adaptability, though; she is always helping me come up with new ideas. Even though she doesn’t have CP, my sister seems to understand the way my body works in a way that other people don’t. This makes her a good person to brainstorm with. For example, this last weekend we were at a party at our other sister’s house. A bunch of us were sitting on a blanket playing with my baby niece; but I had to lie down on the blanket because I cannot sit up independently on the ground.

I could have easily sat in a chair, but I wanted to feel included. As I was holding myself up, my twin thought that the wrap she uses to hold her baby hands free could be tied around me in a way that would support my back and allow me to sit up independently. There was a lot of giggling, my oldest niece and my mother thought we had gone crazy, but after some thinking and a few strategically placed knots we came up with this:

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It worked, but after fifteen minutes my neck started to hurt, so the design needs some tweaking. Of course, after we posted the picture of Facebook, my ever practical college roommate suggested that this stadium chair might be an easier solution. I will have to try it; if it works I might be a little sad. My twin and I were sure that we had struck gold with this particular idea.

I Can Finally Do My Own Hair

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There are some skills you are born with, some skills you acquire and then there are those skills that somehow elude you no matter how hard you try to master them. For me, one of these skills is the ability to style my hair. I simply cannot do it. Well, let me rephrase that, I cannot do it without looking like a six year old did it. Fortunately, this was a problem I was able to avoid for many years; I was blessed with good hair and a twin. On a normal day my hair looks just fine without do anything special to it. I was the queen of the wash and go look; I am also pretty sure my roommates hated me for this. When I needed to get fancy my twin was there with the curling iron and a bottle of hairspray.

Life was good; and then it wasn’t.

My sister abandoned me to go live with her husband and family in Indiana. I stumbled along with a blow dryer and no one else seemed to miss my fancy hair. Occasionally I was lucky enough to have a friend help me out. It wasn’t the same, but I was getting by. Then I was hit with Hepatitis C. Treatment was successful, but it made my hair fall out; suddenly my wash and go hair style was no longer enough. First my hair became thin, which wasn’t too bad, but as it started to grow back it became really frizzy.

I’m not one who usually cares much about what I look like; I regularly leave the house without make-up. But I also hate change. My hair started to bother me because it did not look the same as it had before treatment. I was also starting to feel a little unprofessional. I tried a new conditioner and blow drying, I tried anti-frizz treatments, but nothing worked.

Last week I broke down and bought myself an early birthday gift; a flat iron. I purchased a relatively inexpensive one that was on sale because I wasn’t all that confident I would be able to use it. After a pep talk from my sister, I dove in.

I’m not going to lie; it took me a long time to flat iron my hair, but the results were worth it. My hair looks good again! The time consuming part for me is sectioning out my hair into layers. But once that was done, the flat iron was easy to use and it actually worked. As a bonus, I have used it three times now without burning my skin, hair or any part of the house.

If you have found yourself struggling to style you hair, but can use a blow dryer, then a flat iron may be just the additional tool you need. I know it might seem scary, but go for it. Make sure you keep the receipt though, just in case.

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