I came across an interesting new term the other day – “proxemics”. Proxemics, a term coined by cultural anthropologist Edward Hall, is defined as the study of human use of space and their environments. In particular, the ways that we view our environments and the effect this has on our behaviour, communication and social interaction – something which is strongly influenced by culture.
Life is full of beginnings. Some of those beginnings we have no choice but to participate in, such as our birth, the beginning of a new year, month, week, day, the beginning of life without those who leave us through migration or death (especially), and so forth.
The election is over and, after 9 years, New Zealand has a different government. As with any election, hopes are high for some that this will mean better lives for the more marginalized in New Zealand society, while others are concerned about how much that better life for others will cost them to contribute to in taxes.
For one young man called Sagar Narayan and his family, the new government means that he will have his case with immigration looked at again. Mr Narayan was due to be deported from New Zealand to his native Fiji because he has an intellectual disability, and his future care was previously deemed to cost the health system in this country too much.
I recently read three very different takes on the world as it is now and how it compares to the past. One was this article in the Guardian, “The age of anger”, another Margaret Wheatley’s new book, “Who Do We Choose To Be?: Facing Reality, Claiming Leadership, Restoring Sanity” and the third, a book by Magenta Pixie, “Masters of the Matrix: Becoming the Architect of Your Reality and Activating the Original Human Template”.
Wherever I go in my car these days, if I need my wheelchair to get around when I arrive, I need to get it out of the boot and put the wheels on (I don’t have one of those fancy wheelchair lifts, but I’m sure one day I will, and in the meantime I can just think they’re cool).
A while ago I posted a meme, which said, “Better to have lost in love than to live with a psycho for the rest of your life.”
I liked it of course, otherwise I wouldn’t have posted it. Eleven others did too, some commenting on Facebook, “Amen to that,” and “Definitely!!”
Then this: “Hate it. It’s beat up on people with mental illness time again. Ever had the amazing person you love tell you that they just can’t deal with your mental illness anymore? Our society is totally phobic about people with mental illness having intimate relationships.”
“Mind your language!”
That was what parents used to tell their kids to warn them not to swear. In the last 20 or 30 years however, some people in the disabled community seem to have taken that saying even more seriously than ever before.
“Disabled”, “handicapped”, “special needs”, “differently abled”, ” handicapable”. All these words and phrases have been used over the years to describe those of us whose physical abilities differ from most people’s. Then there’s the very long-winded “people first” language, as in “person with a disability” or “person with special needs” and so on.