Created by and for people with physical disabilities.

Beating the Winter Blues.

Dec 10, 1997

This is an archival transcript of one of our past meetings. We don't have scheduled topical meetings anymore, but we're not opposed to the idea of bringing them back if someone is willing to commit to hosting them on a "long term" basis.

Participants already present:
  HandiBot ([email protected])
  kb9kyy ([email protected])
  Mooooooo ([email protected])
Mooooooo: Ok, i'll start
kb9kyy: AAH!
Jo: I;'ve got a problems lately of tipping to the left all the time. Ferret says he's gonna get me a wedge to straighten me out.
Mooooooo: tonights topic is on beating the winter blues
Countrybo: cool!
Mooooooo: Anyone else here get winter depression?
Countrybo: I do
Jo: Moooooo is winter that cold stuff we are having here right now?
kb9kyy: nope, I just freeze
kb9kyy: LOL
Countrybo: I get snow bound
Mooooooo: what do you do for it CB?
Jo: We get icebound for a few days down here and it is depressing.
Countrybo: last winter longest streatch was 4 weeks
Countrybo: without gettin out
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Countrybo: I write
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Countrybo: I irc
Mooooooo: Hi Carly
Countrybo: I build model airplanes
HelloKit: :o( sorry
Countrybo: I raise two kids lol
Mooooooo: So you just work your way through it?
HelloKit: I see you've all started w/o me... heh
Mooooooo: yep :o)
Countrybo: most impoprtant thing is having curtains open so I can see outside
kb9kyy: we tried to stop Daniel, but he insisted we didn't need you
HelloKit: lol you don't need me
Countrybo: I feed squirrels
kb9kyy: :-)
kb9kyy: I feed the birds
Countrybo: what else is there?
Countrybo: birds too
CincyKid: I feed myself
Countrybo: lol
kb9kyy: lol
Mooooooo: I guess if you have a lot of hobbies, it helps
HelloKit: lol
kb9kyy: jinx
Countrybo: I do too too much
Jo: I feed the birds and watch them out the sliding glass doors, and rock squirrels.
Mooooooo: being in computers its not that easy
Mooooooo: i started taking medication in April for it
Countrybo: well to tell the truth I learned braille transcription last winter
Countrybo: the winter before took a non fiction writing course
Jo: Moooooo I can teach you how to knit, crochet, embroider, and read by candle light when the ice storms put the power out.
kb9kyy: I gotta get to bed...I have to play Christmas music in front of the whole school at 7:30 tomorrow morning...:-(
Countrybo: the winter before took a programming course
Mooooooo: nite brad
Countrybo: The trick is to keep your mind active I think
CincyKid: good luck Kb9
Jo: Countrybo does your power go off?
Mooooooo: wow, you stay pretty active
Countrybo: yuip
Countrybo: was out 3 days last winter
Countrybo: but we got wood stove
Countrybo: and gas stove
Countrybo: and lanterns
* HelloKit is trying to get into the flow of conversation
Countrybo: and battery powered radio
Countrybo: countryfolks can survive lol
HelloKit: What have we talked about so far?
Mooooooo: very true
Jo: How to cope with winter blues by countrybo
kb9kyy: I can keep my equipment running for about a day with my generator, and another hour with just the UPS battery...so I'm not worried about the power
kb9kyy: here in the city, the power rarely goes out
kb9kyy: so do we
kb9kyy: woodstoves are cool!
kb9kyy: l8r all
kb9kyy: http://members.tripod.com/~gjkd/
kb9kyy: visit and sign guestbook
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Mooooooo: no matter how down I am, going out in the woods helps
Mooooooo: just started carly
* Countrybo says i am done lol
Countrybo: NEXT
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Mooooooo: hi nate
nate: hay everone
Mooooooo: what about you Jo?
* Countrybo wonders do people in california and tx get
Jo: I knit, crochet, embroider, bake, and do lots of stuff to help different charities.
Jo: I tend to forget my own problems by helping others.
Countrybo: cool jo
Mooooooo: no snow but very cold
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Mooooooo: ket :o)
nate: how cold moo?
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Jo: Verrrrrry cold at times here and we get ice storms that close the place down.
HelloKit: Hi Ket :o)
Mooooooo: dropped down to 20 lastnight
Mooooooo: hi Judi
keteri: hi mooo and kit
Jo: Worst is when the power goes off and I can't watch tv or get any radio
nate: ok
judi: hi all
keteri: hi judi
Countrybo: get a battery powered radio
Jo: The power outages can be depressing all by themselves.
Jo: battery power won't pull in anything out here.
Countrybo: get a radio light a lantern and read a good book
Countrybo: hook radio to tv antenna
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Countrybo: and you'll pull in stuff world wide lol
Jo: I';ve got 6 kerosene lanterns, and lots of candles and we don't have tv antenna, got cable.
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judi: Sorry, I was late, what are we talking about?
Countrybo: jerry rig radio to cable even better!
Mooooooo: beating the winter blues
Countrybo: or a long wire
Jo: Ok I'll get ferret to do that next time.
* Countrybo is electronics tech lol
Countrybo: lotsa ways jo
Jo: Now how do I put ice skates or skis on my chair?
Countrybo: np
* HelloKit takes over... :o)
Countrybo: take 4 legged chair
HelloKit: Everyone can get depressed during the winter. Do you think having a disability contributes to it?
Countrybo: YES
keteri: yes
Countrybo: causes it!
Jo: Yes because we have problems regular people don't have.
judi: Definately
Countrybo: if ya cant get out ya get depressed
Jo: cabin fever
nate: if i stay insife i get dirpressed
judi: For instance, last night my grandaughter had a Christmas play and it was raining. My chair got wet, I got wet and I don't tolerate wet weather well so today I have a sore throat,etc
Countrybo: yup
Countrybo: bummer
judi: What do you guys do about rain and chairs?
Jo: I found that opening the window shades and sitting in the sun a little while every day it is out helps the depression and vitamin C
* Countrybo dcc's judi a space suit?
HelloKit: lol
judi: lol
HelloKit: I don't take my chair out much so I don't know.
* Countrybo mostly stays outa the rain lol
Jo: Yeah we trid every umbrella in creation and I still get soaked too.
Countrybo: if i had a garage hmmm
judi: It rains in Ky all winter or snows
Countrybo: it snows in mich and rains and ice and mess
nate: it gets relly cold here
judi: same here
Jo: cold makes everything hurt more too.
judi: I need snow tires
judi: amen. Jo
Countrybo: my problem is I cn get outside on electric cart in upto 4 inches of snow lol problem is I cant get into truck unless I got bare pavement
Mooooooo: Judi, i fyou can afford it, get a Gortex rain suit
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Countrybo: and I go bare foot
Jo: Why don't they make studded tires for wheelchairs.
HelloKit: Hmm... good question.
Mooooooo: hello ray
* Countrybo thinks all wheel chair users should have a
Ray1: Hi, Mooooooo.
judi: I have a Rascal
Jo: Yeah but amigos get hurt trying to push through the snow and over the ice.
Countrybo: that'll work! lol
Countrybo: lol jo
judi: thanks, Mooooo
Jo: I got a Rascal but it don't get good traction on ice and snow.
judi: Mine either
Countrybo: mine niether they need all terrain tires on them and twice the power!
Jo: Oh amigo is a chair. Didn't click in W. Tex.
judi: I converted mine to a power chair
Countrybo: lol jo
Countrybo: well jo friends help too! lol
Countrybo: like they shovel a path1
HelloKit: For those of you who do experience winter depression, does it seem to be for no reason or can you usually identify a source?
Mooooooo: judi, a GorTex rain suit will keep you dry even if you're sitting in a puddle of water
* Countrybo broke amigo deck plowin snow with his amigo
Jo: I got a beautiful ramp to the street, but no sidewalks in most of town so getting out in winter is rough.
judi: great
Jo: People pile snow all over the ramped areas and you can't get into them.
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Countrybo: people need educatin!
Mooooooo: My depression is from a chemical imbalance but can be kicked into high gear by a mean comment (intentional or not)
Jo: Yeah city snow plow crews especially.
Countrybo: wow mooo
Jo: Mooooooo does sunshine help you?
* Countrybo thinks if ya keep the room sunny its better
judi: That's true, Mooooooo
HelloKit: Ooooooohh... Jo that reminds me of my town... I hate it when they plow all the snow into the disabled parking spaces!
Mooooooo: not really
Mooooooo: but being in the woods does
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Jo: Yeah since when are disabled parking places the snow plows depository.
Jo: They do it in the Malls north of here all the time. Makes Xmas shopping the pits.
Countrybo: I know a guy covers windows to keep warm and lives like in a cave lol he gets really depressed and I keep my windows clear so sun comes in and I feel better
Countrybo: but get antsy to get out
judi: There are 2 types of depression, one is a chemical imbalance, the other is just a reactional type thing that everyone gets now and then
Mooooooo: I have them both
HelloKit: At my high school they were always plowing snow into the spot where the w/c bus lets ppl off too.
Jo: Yeah, I have chemical imbalances so bad they kick me into heart attacks. Not fun.
Countrybo: a call to the dept of public works can end that
Mooooooo: but medication has taken a lot away
Mooooooo: not all, but most
Mooooooo: xanax comes in handy on those days
Jo: Moooooo medication helps but doesn't quite get it all. 2 x 4 over head from ferret face really gets me going.
judi: It can help a lot. I take medication for it too.
HelloKit: lol
Jo: brb
Mooooooo: lol
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Mooooooo: the only bad part was that i had to double it
Mooooooo: hey jody :o)
Mooooooo: about 4 months ago
Jody: hi all... sorry I'm late.
Mooooooo: np :o)
Jody: hi Judi.... got your notes but I haven't had time to respond.
judi: I battle depression every day Moooooo, so I can sympathize with what you have said
judi: Hi Jody
Jody: are we discussing depression?
HelloKit: Are the holidays extra-stressful when you have a disability?
Countrybo: hmmmm
Jody: yes they are....
judi: Fatigue is such a problem
Mooooooo: they're not stressful for me anymore
Countrybo: I guess I just hate all the commotion the worse
Mooooooo: i dont participate in holidays much anymore
Jody: fatigue is a problem like Judi said... and then there is the other stuff that is hard to do..
Jo: holidays are extra stressful cause either allergies or health prevent getting in on a lot of things.
judi: It adds to the stress
Jo: Take short naps during the day if you can. Especially when busy schedule around it.
* Countrybo thinks it depeneds on sex and disability and
judi: Its hard for others to understand your limitations
Jo: Yeah and some of the gifts you get #$$%##@#
Jody: no can do.... my mother doesn't understand. And I'm HER rock during the holidays.... does anyone else have that problem?
HelloKit: The hardest part for me is shopping for the people who normally help me shop. How do you buy someone's gift right in front of them without them noticing?
Countrybo: lol thats a toughy
Countrybo: mail order?
judi: Sure is
Jo: Try to get someone else to take you. Or put them in coffee shop and get store people to help.
Countrybo: I call into jcpenny lol
HelloKit: Mail order would work except everyone wants credit cards these days... and I don't have one :o/
Countrybo: ya
Jody: Carly, how about asking someone to help you one day and shop for the others and then shop for that first person when you are with someone else
nate: use your parents kit
Countrybo: send check
HelloKit: And writing checks is difficult for me as well.
Countrybo: bummer
Jo: I've found the stores are very helpful with putting care takers in their coffee lounge and taking you around if you ask.
Jo: New cash registers are automatic in lots of stores.
Jo: They write checks for you.
HelloKit: Well, there's only one person willing to take me out... and he's the one I still need to buy for.
Countrybo: hmmm
judi: Have any of you tried to get a chair in a store in a mall?
Countrybo: try giving money?
Jody: or ask your mom to pick up the gift. This means thinking ahea about you want to buy but it might be easier.
Jo: Get him to take you to a store you call ahead to. Arrange for them to help you. K. Mart, Walmart and others are really good at that, Target too.
Countrybo: well i have in kmart lol closets thing we got to a mall
Jody: that was supposed to be ahead
HelloKit: I don't ask my parents for things anymore. They've always treated me like a big inconvenience and I'm sick of it. I refuse to deal with that.
Jo: Even Sears and JCPenny will help if you call ahead.
Jody: even department stores try to be accomodating to the disabled.
Mooooooo: the local stores are that way too
HelloKit: My whole family is like that... example: I'm home w/ my sisters and need to use the restroom - they'll sit there and argue over whose 'turn' it is to help me while I pee my pants.
Jo: I had the attic wired this year as ferrets gift. He can go up in the attic and not get killed now. And didn't have to leave home to get it or pay for it.
Mooooooo: that sucks Carly
judi: I don't even try a mall. K-mart and Walmart are pretty good, except I get so nervous in crowds which equals stress which equals depression
Jo: Open your mouth and tell them off. That is abuse.
Jody: you need an aide you can depend on Carly.
Countrybo: family needs a reality check!!!!
HelloKit: heh, sorry if I sound a lil bitter tonight... had a lousy day.
HelloKit: I have Chris, Jody... he's very dependable.
judi: Carly, are you still thinking of moving out?
Jo: HelloKit is too nice. Gotta get big mouth like Jo-Ann and learn to tell people off when they need it.
HelloKit: Yes I am, and every day at home I look forward to it even more.
HelloKit: Oh believe me, I have a huge mouth.
Jo: Do you use it?
judi: Good luck, sounds like you need a change
HelloKit: My mother has threatened to kick me out over and over since I was about 15.
HelloKit: For my mouth...
Jo: Believe me my pants would not get peed and my family would be turned in for abuse.
Countrybo: i think its more to it than that carly . when a person gets a certain age they wanna leave home and nature makes em fight with parents and all wether they have a disability or not. I think having a disability compounds that built in time clock.
Jo: abuse is abuse and not to be tolerated by elderly, disabled, women and men in bad marriages. Thats what laws are for.
Jody: Carly, so has mine. But every time I actually make a move to leave she asks me to stay. I had a lot of problems with my family too when I was your age.
Jo: Carly how old are you?
HelloKit: Well, my family and I have very different opinions on lots of things. For instance I say I have a right to eat, dress, shower and it's not my fault I need help. They say I have to earn their help.
HelloKit: I'm 18.
Countrybo: yup i thought so lol
Countrybo: i wanted out at 18 too lol
Jo: We must expect help, but must ask and earn respect from people also.
Jody: hmmmm...... earn their help? I agree. Your family needs a reality check.
Countrybo: hey they love you and should help freely
Jo: I learned that by doing what I can to help gets people to help me a lot quicker with what I can't do.
* HelloKit picked up her HUD paperwork yesterday...
judi: Agree, Jo, but I think its a little different when you are dependent
nate: kit you shoud get chirs to help you
Countrybo: you cant earn their help
Jo: I hope you will have another care taker besides Chris and not overload him.
HelloKit: He does, but he can't always be right there.
Countrybo: when you move out carly who will help then?
judi: You've been dependent on them all your life, right?
Jo: HelloKit is in for a shock on independent living.
HelloKit: Chris will be coming with me, Countrybo.
Jody: Jo is right Carly. Someone to take some of the work so that you and he can concentrate on a little fun.... ;)
Countrybo: cool
Countrybo: then go carly go!
Countrybo: its time to spread your wings
judi: Maybe. they need a break too, Carly.
Jo: Even ferret face needs to get out of his cage once in a while after a stressful day at work he can't take me sometimes.
HelloKit: Well the nice thing is that Chris actually enjoys helping me with a lot of things. He thinks it's romantic to feed me :o)
* Countrybo thinks alot of parents would kill their kids
judi: My hubby is the same
Jody: my problem with my family is that they are TOO helpful.
judi: Now, but what about later?
Countrybo: wow jody
Jo: Yeah but they still need a break. Being a caretaker is very stressful. I had a hubby died and know.
Mooooooo: even the most in love people need a break
HelloKit: And if I get help setting up I can go on my own for a few hours.
Countrybo: yup mooo is right
* Countrybo is alone most of the day
Countrybo: that helps
Jody: that can be just as annoying Countrybo. They don't leave me be sometimes.
Countrybo: has dangerouse times lol but helps
Jo: HelloKit sometimes they need more than that. A day off fishing with the boys or just to get out alone. Everyone needs space once in a while.
judi: How old are you Jody?
HelloKit: Yeah I know... Chris doesn't believe me tho. Our plans right now are to save up and start our own business (and do it right the first time, unlike my dad). If we do well eventually we'll be able to afford someone else.
Jody: 32
HelloKit: My options financially are pretty limited right now.
Jo: You don't get any kind of help from govt.
Jo: What state are you in?
judi: Sopunds like a good plan, Carly. Every dream has to have a beginning.
HelloKit: Chris is listed as my attendant with SS so that he doesn't count against me.
Jody: Carly... how old is Chris?
judi: Jody, tell them you need your space...
HelloKit: He'll be 22 in Feb.
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Jody: oh. I do but they fuss. More after surgery then anything else.
Countrybo: well bed time night all. good luck carly
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nate: wb moo
HelloKit: What helps make the holidays go by smoother for you?
Jo: HelloKit, I probably will make you angry but Love don't pay the rent, food, medical bills or extras. You got a lot of obstacles to overcome besides you disablility.
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Jo: Holidays go smoother if I try to pace myself and not overdo, trying to please others.
judi: Family taking over plans
nate: my g/f
Jody: if someone else would make the christmas cookies....
HelloKit: I know, Jo, believe me I know. heh... if it was just my disability I'd have been out of here a year ago :o)
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Mooooooo: deedee :o)
Jo: Heck I am on my third hubby now. Go for it. Everyone should try at least once.
judi: I would like to conserve my energy so that I can just enjoy being with everyone.
deedee: Hi Mooooooo
judi: hi deedee
Jo: judi, I don't want them to take over it all. Then I get stuck doing things I really don't want too and get more upset.
Jo: hi deedee
deedee: hi there judi!
* HelloKit sighs.
deedee: and Jo
judi: I can't be 'the one in charge now'
Jo: don't have to be in charge but make sure you have input.
HelloKit: I'm really sorry I changed the subject like that, guys. I'm having a really rotten week.
Jody: Actually... having everything planned. Like buying enough ingredients in advance or deciding on who's getting what before the 24th
judi: ok, Carly
Jo: NOKIDDING would have never guessed it.
nate: its ok carly
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Mooooooo: heya sheree :o)
Xova: hey
Jo: I'm not in charge, too scatter brained, but I do have input and suggestions that can help.
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judi: What depresses me most is that it seems like some of my grandkids are starting to ignore 'Grandma' in prefernce to their other non-disabled grandparents
* HelloKit thinks she has just demonstrated a perfect
Jody: I know this sounds simple, but meditation can help. Listening to soft music and doing breathing exercises.
judi: And, I can't get to church very often
Jo: Make the church come to you. I do.
Jody: Judi, doesn't your church have one or two people you can depend on to pick you up?
Jo: They took my money for enough years let them come to me now.
judi: That sounds great Jody, but ever tried to meditate with large doses of cortisone putting your brain into high gear?
HelloKit: lol true Jo
deedee: ΒΆ;-]
Mooooooo: there is an online sunday service on NewNet
HelloKit: Really?
Mooooooo: yep
deedee: Hmm ive moved into a house without access...a ramp....and Ive been inside now for going on 4 weeks..talk about feeling like a recluse
judi: My husband takes me, its the sitting still for so long and getting out in the bad weather
Mooooooo: im gonna add a link tonight
Xova: well have to go my mom needs the puter
Xova: night all
Jo: So have peole from church come to your house for prayer and home worship. Less chance of catching stuff that way to. And watch TV church services.
Jody: my brain is in high gear without the cortizone. that's why I do it... to slow myself down a bit
Mooooooo: bye sheree :o)
Xova: night moooooo hugs
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Mooooooo: /:o)
Jo: Watch TV on Sundays and have them come in middle of week to space it out and not tire you.
Jody: And when I can't meditate... a good glass of wine does the trick.
Jody: ;))))
judi: Sounds stupid, but I'm Catholic, we're brainwashed to think our body has to be in that building. Yes, they have a radio mass and my daughter brings me communion, still miss it.
Jo: A good glass of wine can also put some of us in the hospital with our meds.
Jo: judi I am a Catholic.
judi: Wine is a nono on my med list too
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judi: Brainwashed?
Jo: There are lay apostalate workers that will come to you and priests come to house and all sorts of help from Knights of Columbus etc. That excuse don't work with me.
Jo: hi Ohio
Jody: mine too. but my doctor told me that I can has one if taken at the right time
OhiO: hi Jo
judi: hi Ohio
OhiO: hi judi
Jo: If you ask for your church to help you they will.
HelloKit: Well, I'm coming down with a cold and not feeling very well. Besides that, I'm embarrassed with my little outburst. I think I'll take off for now.
Jody: don't worry about it Carly. You're entitled.
Mooooooo: ok carly
judi: How many priests do you have? We have 3 but our parish is so big, they rarely go to anyone's house.
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* HelloKit waves.
Jody: an outburst is good for the psche.
judi: night, Carly
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* HelloKit hugs Mooooooo.
Jody: night.
Mooooooo: /:o)
HelloKit: Bye all...
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