Sadly, 2022 was not the best year. This recap of 2022 will discuss the bad and the good of my 2022.
Losing Mr. Rogers
Of the bad things that happened in 2022, losing my beloved Mr. Rogers was by far the worst. March 25, 2022 was a terrible day for me. For the rest of my life, I will always be sad on March 25. That day will constantly remind me of the loss of my amazing little buddy and all he meant to me. On March 25th of this year, A hole was made in my heart that will never quite fill.
We entered the year hoping Desiree’s pending eye surgery would fix all of the pain she has been living with for most of her life. We leave 2022 not knowing how or even if she will someday be pain free. That reality and watching her struggle to be herself as the pain continues getting worse has been a real disappointment this year.
My Blood Pressure
I haven’t written about this before, because it’s kind of embarrassing for me. On October 17, I thought I was going to the doctor to have some skin checked on my face. I wound up discovering that I had very high blood pressure. Since that wasn’t the case the prior October, it was obvious to me things had to change.
Since October 17, I have lost more than 30 pounds. I have not had a single Coke. I rarely have dessert. I have reduced my portion size. For the first time since beginning my career with the city of Portland, I am actively trying very hard to not worry about all of the things I cannot change. I am trying, although it’s hard for me, to accept the sad reality that I will accomplish far less than I should in my role. While the realization of how little progress can be made has been a bitter pill to swallow, I know I’m not good to anyone if I have a massive stroke. So, I’m focussing on putting things in their proper perspectives.
The Good Things
The best thing to happen in 2022 is that I finally discovered what it means to have found my true love. On Valentine’s Day of this year, I proposed to Desiree.. Her acceptance and her willingness to fight for the life we have both always wanted and that we now know we could have is such an incredible thing. Just thinking about her and what we have makes me smile and causes me to feel warm and fuzzy inside.
My New Podcast
The best way I have found to cope with the sad realities of my job has been the creation of the Demand Our Access blog and podcast. I love being able to educate other people with disabilities about their legal rights. The possibility that someone may learn something from what I’m doing that improves their life is very exciting to me. The reality that every time a person with a disability achieves an accessibility breakthrough means the world is more accessible to all of us with disabilities is the biggest reason I’m so excited about the Demand Our Access project. I really needed an outlet to use my skills and knowledge to make the kind of difference I don’t feel like is possible through any typical job.
While I’m not good at it, I will say I enjoy the fact that Desiree has gotten me into doing karaoke. I enjoy sharing that communal experience with others in our American Council of the Blind community. I even enjoy posting my songs here. I’m realistic about my lack of talent. But I enjoy singing and seeing what I can do with different songs. Having someone who can edit my songs so they sound better than they do in reality also helps.
Meeting my Birthfather
In 2022, I finally met my birthfather. For years I never thought I would. Sometimes, I questioned whether I wanted to meet him or not. But this year I decided to see if I could find him. Thanks to Aunt Barb, finding him was easy.
His immediate acceptance of and interest in me felt good. I have met him twice. The second time, Mom, Aunt Barb, and Desiree were with me. It was a very nice dinner. I’m looking forward to continuing to talk with him and to seeing how this mixed up family can start becoming kind of together.
Mom and Aunt Barb
As is the case every year, the love and support I constantly get from Mom and Aunt Barb is a highlight. For as long as I have been lucky enough to have known them, they have been constant supporters of mine. When things are good they are there to celebrate with me. When things are bad they are there to love me through them.
It’s true that 2022 wasn’t the best year for me. But it’s also true that Aunt Barb and Mom helped make this year way better than it would have been without them.