Dear Gov. Ivey………..

Congratulations! Because of you, people from both sides of the aisle are coming together…in criticism of the new anti abortion bill you signed into law this week.

You gotta admit, you have to know you’ve done F’ed up when both Tomi Lahren AND Pat Robertson come out against your policy.

Abortion in and of itself is controversial, but when you unequivocally ignore cases of unwanted pregnancy that happen through rape or incest, you manage to re-traumatize victims in the name of saving a life. Trauma that already leads to depression, anxiety and increased rates of suicide

And while I am pleased that there is an exception when the life of the mother is in danger, I think it’s a good idea to point out that I’ve made the conscious choice to not become pregnant because as a **disabled woman, pregnancy would be harder on my body and I’m terrified of the potential complications that could physically harm or end my life.

But I made that choice. And I can control whether or not to change my mind on that.

Unless I am raped. And live in Alabama. 

So this law really pisses me off.

It further frustrates me when we talk about this law and women like myself are told to “get our tubes tied” if we don’t want to get pregnant by rape.

So instead of, I don’t know, maybe telling men not to become rapists and increasing the punishments for those convicted, we are telling would-be rape victims to prevent getting pregnant by first getting their tubes tied.

Alabama is also set to punish physicians who perform these procedures by giving them sentences that are far greater than the rapists who put their female victims in the position to need an abortion. 

Neat. 

“But Laura, what about that clause about the health of the mother?” 

Well…….

I don’t trust the government to make a logical determination of the risks to my life when at the same time, as a disabled woman, I’ve needed a brand new wheelchair and the “options” available to me (through the government healthcare system we have) returned with a substandard product that would have further disabled my body (stay tuned for my 3-part wheelchair buying experience coming soon 😉 ).

In this case, it should be medical professionals and medical professionals only (one chosen by the women in crisis) who are tasked with determining what is the best course of action for their patient.

Abortion is horrible. But what is worse is taking away the choice of a woman in crisis. 

Full stop. 

**I speak only for myself as a disabled woman, and my views do not necessarily represent the entire disabled community.

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LAFF: The One Where Lulabelle DIY’s a Crazy Product She Found on the Internet……

***Trigger Warning: Today’s blog contains talk of babies and a baby related product. If this subject is a trigger for you, click off this blog and enjoy one of my other non baby related posts. 🙂

I found it yesterday. And thought initially it was a joke.

But after finding a link to the website where it can be purchased, I realized it was very much a new thing.

Ladies and gentlemen, FridaBaby has outdone themselves this time with a product dads of toddlers have needed for years. And for $27.99, you can have it.

May I present to you, FridaBalls, the kid proof underwear for dads!!

Honestly I’m still clicking around the website making sure this isn’t an April Fools joke, bu so far it seems legit.

But that price? For ONE pair?? I mean, I guess you could justify that, especially if you have an overly kicky child, but I wondered……Could this be DIY’d?

Well folks, I would say YES!! And as it turns out, this product came out just in time, especially if you have leftover Easter eggs.

What you’ll need to DIY yourself a pair of kid proof underwear:

1. One pair or boxers or briefs

2. One half of a plastic Easter egg (and size does matter here. Makes sure it fits your um,  stuff)

3. Needle and thread or fabric glue or hot glue (*If using hot glue DO NOT wear the garment during this step).

Take the pair of boxers or briefs and find the pockety hole thing reserved for your “delicate package”. Take half of the Easter egg and place it inside the pockety thing, open side towards you. Then secure it to the boxer or briefs by the method of your choice (**do NOT wear the garment while securing the egg). 

And ba-bam! Instant kid proof anti ball bustin’ underwear!

You’re welcome! 🙂  

*Lulabelle.net is not responsible for injuries acquired if instructions were not followed or if it was decided to drink and DIY

**See first warning.

***It was also brought to my attention during a rough draft reading of this post that I neglected to specify that if you use hot glue or fabric glue, it should go between the outside of the egg and the fabric of the underwear.  While I thought this to be an understood step, I did just point out to not wear the underwear while attaching the egg, so there you go. 😛 

 

 

PSA: The One Where Lulabelle Reminds You About the Importance of Following Directions…….

A few months ago I referenced briefly how this past summer I developed an ulcer on my hip. At the time I was unsure how it happened, but in the months since I’ve connected the dots and figured out why I ended up with a bullet sized hole in my hip.

The TL;DR-I don’t read directions on things I buy that I assume I know how to clean.

Oops!

So today I decided to pass along my knowledge so what happened to me doesn’t happen to you.

You’re welcome!

So, for the entire story, we have to go back to last fall. That was when Chad asked me to find something that we could put down on the bottom of the inside of the tub so he wouldn’t slip and fall in the shower. The first attempt was small stick on grippy strips that Riley immediately pulled up.

Solution #2 was a squishy tub mat from Walmart.

That seemed to stand up against our youngest cat’s claws and teeth.

But there seemed to be a problem.

I wanted to get into the habit of cleaning more in the bathroom, so at least once a week, I cleaned the bathtub and tub mat in the way I’ve always cleaned them-by spraying bathroom cleaner onto it and scrubbing it down with a scrub brush.

It seemed though that the more I scrubbed it, the dirtier it appeared. I couldn’t figure it out, so I tried to wipe it down with another cleaner-no change.

Around the same time I developed a weird red mark on my hip…..That turned into an ulcer.

Months later the question of how this even happened still baffled me. So I went to the free clinic in town and got it cultured. And it came back a week later positive for TWO types of bacteria.

Yep. Overachiever over here. Go me!

After my ulcer was cultured, I went out and bought another tub mat to replace the weirdly dirty looking one we had.

I found one that I was excited to try because it was a micro-fiber one that could be put in the WASHER! How cool! I also noticed it looks suspiciously like the one we had at home. So we bought it and brought it home and I inspected both and gasped!

Ladies and gentlemen, apparently, MICRO FIBER TUB MATS CAN’T BE SCRUBBED WITH A CLEANING BRUSH AND CLEANER!! Apparently what I had been doing for months with our old mat was actually introducing bacteria deep into the mat and that is how my ulcer formed!

Knowledge is power, kids. Hopefully this story will help you not get an infectious ulcer on your hip.

Cheers!

 

To the 2020 Presidential Candidates…….

The following blog post will be short and sweet. Yesterday I posted the following on my Facebook page, but decided it needed a blog post of its own. I’ve never really cared about politics all that much in my life but, as I’m nearing 40, God and the universe has placed it on my heart to cast my vote for the person that not only promises the following, but follows through.

I don’t know who I’ll be voting for this year, but as a person with a disability, I believe that person HAS to offer a comprehensive health care plan that doesn’t fault people for being disabled and will be affordable to all. And will not exclude ANY medical equipment the person needs to have a decent quality of life (including covering a crappier product that is cheaper even when doctors recommend a higher quality product that costs more).

And forgive me if I’m not interested in dissenting arguments at the moment. If you want to offer that, I’d first ask you to think about having a wheelchair, used on a daily basis, so broken half of the brakes don’t work anymore and everyday you are out and about you say a silent prayer that the wheels don’t go flying off and you end up hitting the ground on your bum.

**drops mike……..on foot accidentally and now needs to go to the ER but doesn’t have insurance so just soaks it in Epsom salt and slaps a band-aid on it**

In Defense of Dr. Phil…….When “Outrage Culture”Shifts Focus from the Real Issue……

Yep. I’m going there today.

And yes, I’m just as surprised as you. But here we go.

Two weeks ago Tuesday, Dr. Phil’s daily TV program was titled, “I Swiped Right On My Quadriplegic Boyfriend.” The basic premise of the show was that the girlfriend had become her boyfriend’s full-time care giver because they couldn’t find proper caregivers for him.

And ever since the episode ended, the internet has lost their collective minds over some of the contents of the show.  Specifically over two things that Dr. Phil said:

“You have a choice to make you’ll have to make it today. You can be his caregiver, or you can be his lover, you can’t be both.”
and,
“100 out of 100 times, this won’t work”

Now, knowing what the episode was titled mixed with these statements, one could draw the conclusion that Dr. Phil was pissing on interabled relationships (where one partner is able-bodied while the other is disabled) and declaring that you can’t be a spouse/partner and a full-time caregiver simultaneously. Because “100 out of 100 times, this won’t work.”

Infuriating, right? Makes you want to take your wheelchair down to the TV lot where the show is filmed and “accidentally” run him down.

Except that both of these statements that I’ve seen posted on disability blogs (the first of which appeared on a prominent internet space where disabled writers have a voice but curiously are not paid, all while the site grows in popularity-and where I used to regularly contribute), are taken WILDLY out of context.

And I get it. As a person with a disability, I first saw those clips of the show and those words come out of his mouth and I lost my mind. How dare he say that! I decried him on Facebook, shared the article in several places and almost bought (in bulk) a tee-shirt that said, #100outof100.

Then I took a breath. And decided I needed to watch the episode in its entirety before making a take down response. Because, I reasoned, I like to be fully informed before I take someone down on the internet. 😛

So I decided to seek out and watch the entire episode.

And then I realized, after watching the episode, that instead of writing a take down piece, I would have to write this.

I understand difference of opinion but when the conversation in the disability community shifts away from the truth that those who abuse can be disabled, it takes away from the serious nature of the actual problem and therefore those who are in interabled abusive relationships can’t get the help they need.

Yep.

Turns out the couple featured on the show were in the midst of a toxic relationship. The boyfriend had become a quadriplegic after a racing accident (he was a motorcycle racer) and was still so bitter that he refused to allow anyone in to take care of him full-time besides his girlfriend and would call her names and berate her when he was angry. At one point they mentioned he spit on her in anger.

Meanwhile, the girlfriend was so burnt out from taking care of him full-time on top of the verbal abuse he lobbed at her (she was also losing weight from stress) and THAT is why they were on the show. She would also lash out at him in response to his abuse.

Now back to those inflammatory comments:

After hearing both sides of the issue, Dr. Phil declared to the girlfriend that, “You can be his caregiver or you can be his girlfriend, but you can’t be both.” This only pertained to her situation. She was mentally drowning and needed to make that choice. Dr. Phil in no way implied that everyone in an interabled relationship as a full-time caregiver couldn’t also be a good lover. This advise was for her and her alone.

For the boyfriend, Dr. Phil brought on another interabled couple to help him understand that he can overcome his anger over the accident that landed him in a chair.

Now let’s talk about outrage culture. In this instance, the calls for Dr. Phil to be cancelled and the outrage that he disrespected the entire disability community takes away from the real issue of this couples pain and shedding light on interabled domestic abuse. Which for some reason not a lot of people want to talk about and statistics on abusers who are disabled seemingly don’t even exist. 

However, stats on disabled domestic abuse DOES exist and according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, “police are less likely to respond to reported violence against people with disabilities” (At 70% as opposed to responding to non disabled reporting at 90%)

Based on the above statistic (and the fact that March is domestic violence awareness month), articles and commentaries really missed the mark by not shedding more light on this topic after the Dr. Phil episode aired. 

**If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship you can anonymously call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at: 1-800-799-7233 or go to https://www.thehotline.org/ 

On Why We Can’t Have Nice Things…..

The following blog post is dedicated to our friend, John Erwood, who passed away unexpectedly a month ago.

He loved to laugh and play practical jokes.

Which is why I think he had a hand in the following scenario that occurred right before we left the house for his funeral on Saturday.

Rest well, Erwood. We’ll see you in The Morning! 


Before we get into what exactly happened last Saturday, here is a little background. Our oldest cat, Phoebe who is 13, was diagnosed with a UTI by a new veterinarian last week. They gave her liquid amoxicillan with instructions to us to administer it twice a day for 2 weeks. Now here’s the thing, Phoebe HATES taking medicine but liquid we’d found at least when we mix it in to wet food, she’ll eat it. Not this stuff. So we had no choice but to implement Plan B which is basically channeling the Crocodile Hunter, closing off all the exits and while one person catches her as she runs by, the other one jams the syringe in her mouth to deliver the medicine.

At least it acts as a great ab work-out. 😛

So rewind to this past Saturday. Erwood’s funeral was at 11:30 and it was a 30-minute drive away. And we had two stops to make before we would even get there. Chad worked in the early morning and arrived home at 10:30 to help me give Phoebe her medicine and then we’d leave for the funeral. After blocking off all the exits and finding her, Chad goes to pick her up and she bolted underneath the living room furniture. After toppling the furniture, Phoebs made a run for it towards the kitchen, Chad in hot pursuit. As he picked her up, it happened.

Poop.

Lots.
Of.
Poop.

Flowing forth like Willie Wonka’s Super Disgusting Chocolate Fountain.

As Chad stepped towards me, the poo continued to flow, defiling a large portion of our not-so-clean- anyway linoleum. As I grabbed a hold of Phoebe, poop rained down on my pants and shoes. That I would have to change before leaving for the funeral we were already late for.

We gave Phoebe her medicine and assessed the kitchen floor.

Yeah, we were gonna be late.

As we cleaned up ourselves and the floor, it happened. We ran out of paper towels.

Right before Chad suggested he’d run to the store to get paper towels, we tried mopping up the worst of the mess with toilet paper. Now, a word about our toilet paper:

It’s thin. Like ridiculously thin. Think the thinnest tissue wrapping paper known to man meets the width of a human hair.

Yeah.

Then we started to run out of toilet paper. So Chad left to get an emergency back up of more absorbent paper towel while I was left alone with defiled clothes and shoes, and puddles of linoleum poop from an angry cat who is no where to be found.

So we rolled into the memorial service so late we almost missed the closing prayer. Which I think Erwood would have understood. 

Cheers! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The One Where Lulabelle Finds Out Fortune Telling is an Inadvisable Career Move……(Predictions from 2018)

Happy 2019!! For my first post of the new year, I thought I’d look back on my predictions for this year that I made in 2018 and see how well I was able to correct predict what was gonna go down in 2018.

Yeah, this is gonna be disappointing. I think I’ll stick to blogging. 😛

“Trump will say or tweet something controversial”: Honestly this was a lock. Like the free space on a BINGO board. 

“I will drink at least one glass of wine (Yeah, by the way, some of these are going to be no-brainers. 😉 Buckle up.)” I did not disappoint 2018 in the alcohol department. Bottoms up. 😉 

“I will have mastered the art of red lipstick (In case anyone thought my Miranda Sings Halloween costume was as good as it was going to get.)” I did. And also added to my weird lipstick color collection light blue, dark green, dark blue that almost looks black, dark purple and I made my own yellow (that kinda sucks and doesn’t look yellow at all on my lips). I also made an Instagram account devoted to my love of weird lipstick shades. You can check it out here: https://www.instagram.com/thereallulabelle/

“Joe Biden will announce his plans to run for president in 2020 (I have mixed feelings within my body about this one, but there it is.)” So while I thought I was wrong on this one, the mainstream media is now reporting that Biden will announce whether or not he’ll run in 2 weeks. Stay tuned. 

“Tonya Harding will be reinstated into the US Figure Skating Association (Honestly it just makes sense. As time passes, it seems as though she really did have nothing to do with the attack on Nancy Kerrigan.)” She was not. 

“Oreo will debut a new flavor” They did. About 50. (This is an exaggeration as I’m too lazy to look up the actual number, but I know it’s more than one 😛 ) 

 

Happy New Year!!

PS: Chad and I would like to thank the anonymous (because he can’t remember who it was) cab passenger who gifted us with a tupperware of chocolate where I thought at first it was a block of chocolate and I was already on board. So when I got it out of the freezer last night, I was shocked to find it had strawberries in it and chocolate cake. At the time we weren’t sure what it was, but it was delicious.

Now we are 90% sure it was some sort of tiramisu with pudding and strawberries on top.

YUM!!