Disabled Girls Who Lift

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E58: Being Wheel with Jesi

January 24th 2022
On this episode, we welcome Jesi to the ‘cast to discuss daily nutrition, exercise, habits, and personal mindset. Her experience with a booth at Wodapalooza reminded us how important it is to not only... More
this is disabled girls who lift. We are reclaiming what's rightfully ours. One podcast at a time, it's mary Beth Chloe and Marcia bringing you the thoughts and unpopular topics to get you out of that. A bliss comfort zone. Mhm, mm hmm. Hello everyone welcome to yet another episode of disabled girls who lift Mostly, usually, sometimes sometimes um this is Marsha, she's sitting in south florida in Seminole Tribe Land. I am a black person wearing clear glasses in front of a colorful glass wall wearing mine, not your inspiration porn, mustard crop top. So we have our host mary Beth will introduce herself and then our guest jesse but just real quick, I do want to mention that you know, some people might be hurting right now. I don't know where everybody's line is when it comes to discussing gatherings or even if it's outdoor in person or whatever events, just going to let you know, we may talk about something in this episode, but you know where we stand in terms of the pandemic, all of our social media, all of our episodes, we talked about it all the time, but whatever your comfort level is just keep that in mind for what we're talking about mary Beth what up y'all I am sitting in northern California on a lonely land.

I am a Filipina woman wearing glasses. Got some piercings on her face wearing a white fluffy sweater in my living room different today. She's adorable, you guys! Um with some new headphones, I'm super excited, has only seen me with those blue headphones. I was so tired of them. There's a difference between over the ear and on the ear. Never knew that. Um, but yeah, we're, we're super excited. We've got a guest on today, jesse straw ham um from charlotte north Carolina and you know, participated in water pollutions. A wheel wad has a dope foundation called wheel with me fit. Um where you know, we talked about toxic diet culture and we, I'm super excited to hear more. Welcome. Thank you so much for having me. Um I'm a white female with a double hooped nose piercing, dark hair, black hoodie, white headphones.

Living her best life here in charlotte north Carolina and I'm stoked to be here guys. Fantastic. Oh and mary Beth looked it up and forgot to mention charlotte north Carolina is sitting on. Do you know those pronunciations? Not really right To Taba, Taba, Taba walks to Cheragh and Suguri. Thank you. They, they roll deep in charlotte. Okay. Yes, they do. Right. So there's so many things to talk about. So many things going on on your page and the things that you're doing just a lot. Very intrigued and very interested. Um, but I think I want to start with the Foundation. What is that? What are you doing? What's going on so well with the foundation is actually uh, we're dedicated to helping wheelchair users achieve independence. Uh, so many of us are reliant on the government and other people for our independence and in reality there's such a fuller life outside of those confines and those constructions that have been placed on us.

And so we right now host empowerment weeks completely free to wheelchair users um their virtual and it's a weeklong of just learning information from other individuals in the community that are successful and they are achieving different things. So this next empowerment week is the first week of february. We have fitness, growth mindset, goal setting, zumba. Um there's just a lot of different resources from the community itself and then well with me fit is my actual business where we do macro tracking to really fit your lifestyle. So it's making your nutrition work for whatever your goals are whether that's weight loss or muscle gain. We want to make your nutrition work for you and really dial that in and stop the whole toxic yo yo dieting, trying this, trying that and nothing ever really working and panning out for people. Yeah, that makes sense. So how long have you been doing either the foundation or your business? Is this a solo mission? Are you like totally on your own wearing 20,000 hats?

How's it working out? Um up until about a year and a half ago, it was just me and I have now had a team of wheelchair using powerhouse women who are just in it to win it. Like all we care about is just helping other people realize what they're capable of regardless of if they have a disability or not and just helping them live the healthiest lifestyle possible. And however health looks to them mentally, physically, whatever that looks like we just want people to be happy man. There's just so much negativity floating around in this world right now that we just want to be that light in someone's life. Mm hmm. Mm hmm. And that's that's I think that's like such a powerful word to just health and healthy because of what we're hearing and our fitness industry and powerlifting and bodybuilding. All those um barbell sports as well. It's like but then also like how does your foundation and your personal trainers and nutrition coaches define health and healthy?

It's it's so like hard for disabled folks perceived by society to, I don't know, it's you, Yeah, I'm disabled then. How can I be healthy? Right. Right. Like it's like a like you just 404 error. Like what, what does that mean? I'm I'm a big advocate of nutrition, foundational health. Especially in the the day and age of this pandemic. I believe that we it starts with us preventative care really starts with us. What are you fueling your body? How is your gut health? You know, our gut produces 90% of our serotonin, which is our feel good hormone. Like if your gut health is off, who's to say that's not what's causing your mood to be off um 8 70 to 80% of our immunity is also held in our gut. So it's like if you if you wanna put yourself in the best position to to fight off any illness to have the longevity of your independence, longevity of your health. Let's get your foundational health right?

Let's get your nutrition on point to really support your body from the inside out. Yeah, I'm with it. I mean as long as that is like something that depends on the person, right? Because there's also um and especially, I mean I don't know how much so in physical disabilities or you know wheelchair users but definitely for autoimmune diseases, there's like this protocol or you have to do this diet or you have to do the low histamine, the low fog map the ai ai p like it's like on the line this is not a list of do and do not and it's just like okay um this seems like a bit excessive, it's really finding what works works for you. So I have one of the girls that's actually on my team, Jackie um she's very open about her recent diabetes diagnosis that she got last summer and the set macros by a dietitian didn't work for her diabetes diagnosis but she took the initiative to figure out alright what macros work for my sugars and for my glucose. And so she really she was the the advocate in her own health to say, this is what's working for me.

Your protocol has my numbers all messed. This is what is keeping my numbers where they are supposed to be. And so I think it also comes back to that self responsibility. I'm a big advocate of self responsibility and and us doing what's best for us and and taking that step in our own life a lot of times, you know, we allow other people to control how we move, how we perceive ourselves, what we think is wrong and right when in reality those people they're they're tools may work in certain areas of our life but it's not the end of all ends for our specific scenario, right? Some so you say responsibility but I feel like in that description you're talking more about autonomy, right? Like you're choosing what matters to you, you're choosing what happens to the thoughts in your head, you're choosing what happens to what you do with your body, to your body for your body. Like you can take all the information is in but you have the autonomy to decide what matters, right? Like obviously that includes accountability, responsibility, you know self care, figuring out all the other like internalized shit you've got going on but like the power to choose is what I feel like a lot of us get stuck in and I know I went through that also, you know like every doctor is like well you know just cut out dairy and cut out meats and oh you shouldn't lift weights.

Just do more swimming instead. And I'm like, well the doctor says it it must be true. Like I had one telling me because I'm like dealing with like this post nasal drip. I have like this reflux, disgusting. It's like, oh, just cut out dairy, it'll be fine. Like everyone keeps telling me that ship. But you know what, I'm gonna do it, I'm gonna do it. So I bought like cashew, milk, yogurt or whatever. Guess what? I still got it. It's solved it. It wasn't the dairy. I have the power to write like that, right? But a lot of people, they don't, we we get one source of information, right? For me. And this is my personal experience. I I got a certain amount of information from rehab. That said I need to eat 1000 calories a day because I'm a wheelchair user. And right, right. And so here I am limiting my caloric intake. I didn't learn the importance of protein. I didn't learn anything about nutrition other than I should only be eating 1000 calories.

So then here I am 10 years old, I Was, you know, 22 years old. They're saying you need to eat 1000 calories. You need to do this. And like the medical professionals, I feel like they have a one track mind of this is how it is. This is what works. And it's like this this blanket thing. And I think it's up to the individual, we have this the self of I'm all about responsibility, taking responsibility for our own lives. Like we can we put blame on everyone else. The doctor told me to do this, my parents, this is the way I was raised. This is just how it is. And we kind of define who we are by what we've been told without critical thinking to think past all of these, these truths that have been nailed into our head about everything fitness, nutrition, who we should be. You know, it goes so far outside the scope of just fitness. Yeah.

And see and that's when it becomes so dangerous because of their license because of their, of how we perceive doctors and the medical industry in the nation, in this nation and in other countries it's like they're always right even though they don't have a nutrition background doctor is always right. That's when it's scary. And so how do you even know with so little resources, right? And if you're following the wrong person on instagram the wrong person on facebook, that's when it becomes hard to just like your, your, you know, programming or training and fitness is like no, no one cookie cutter program is going to work for me staying with nutrition. We have to customize the plan based on, you know, your responses to dairy, your like love for certain types of food, staying with my love for the barbell versus cardio.

I'm just saying? You know? I don't know. Yeah it's tough because it's like well funk, I can't trust this. Like doctors telling me 1000 calories a day, right? And then we're like where did you go from? You know like the internet, I mean now is like wow there's so much but it wasn't always like that right? So imagine you go online, you try to find something. What if you're the first person you find is an asshole like and then you don't know if they're you know if what they're saying? Yeah so it really does all start with you. But it's just how did you do? Yeah. How'd you get there? Um So I acquired my disability at 22 years old and literally up until I became a person with a disability, I never questioned a doctor. I'm like oh they have a they have a M. D. So they must know what they're talking about, right? And I honestly it was 2020. I I was going through this period where I couldn't transfer, my shoulders were deteriorating. I couldn't build muscle. It didn't matter what I did. I just wasn't able to maintain and build muscle in my shoulders and I got connected with some of the guys at first form and they're like you know it sounds like you're just not eating enough protein.

Have you ever thought about tracking it? And I was like what is a macro? I don't know. What do you mean? What do you mean? Why? I was like, you know, just like shut system, shutdown, panic. Holy ship, what am I getting myself into the type of thing? And so I started tracking just my protein and I was only eating 30 to 60 g a day and with that with weight training on top of that. And so I'm like, yeah, so not only am I need a wheelchair user, right? I'm a wheelchair user, pushing myself nonstop, but also the fact that I'm weight training on top of it and in doing crossfit, which is just ridiculously hard on your body. Anyways. And so I was not feeling my body properly. I literally within six months of eating proper macronutrients and actually meeting the proper protein. Carbs and fats that are suggested for my height and weight. Forget my disability, just height and weight. I literally reversed all my shoulder issues. So here I am, a year later, I've built muscle, I have no shoulder pain.

Um I'm it's like night and day completely all by just taking my nutrition into my hands and making sure I'm getting the proper amount of numbers through whole foods. But what do you think the shift was the fact that you had somebody outside telling you that you could trust or that went through it. Like what is the difference? Because people whisper in our ear all the time. Why did that hit? Um it was that I was getting cortisone shots every 3-6 months just to be independent? Um and I know how quickly cortisone can deteriorate our muscles as well. And so I'm like, my doctor, my doctor never told me. He never said, Hey, he never told me. Well, he never told me it could be my nutrition. He never let me know that. And I'm like, why? Why why aren't we educating? Why are we masking problems with, with pharmaceuticals um, with shots and and not actually getting to the root of what is causing this? Like here, let's slap a band aid on this and not even take into consideration that you are living a life long using your shoulders as your legs. Like this is something that we're just slapping a band aid on and not thinking about the long term of the independent.

What about the cortisone is not a long term thing. Yeah, I'm sorry, go ahead man. Um Physical therapy, did that come up with them or I got dry? I got dry needling um from my Pc, but no one ever told me it could have been nutrition. It wasn't until I got connected with the right person. That was like, hey, it sounds like it could be this. Have you tried this? And I'm like, I never tried it. That's terrible. I mean, it's not in our scope, right as a pt, but like you're a whole person, right? Like, like I should be asking you, how do you sleep? What do you do every day? What's your job look like? How, what kind of car do you have? What's the, what's the height of your toilet? Like it really should be. It should be pretty deep. Yeah. Yeah. I mean the first thing I thought of was looking at the back of a nutrition facts label and saying this is based on 1000 calorie diet for the day. and even that is, you know what says 2000 usually visit to, Okay, sorry, based on a 2000 calorie.

Well there you go. That kind of tells you what the standard is. Yeah. It's like 2000 for whom for me are these? My percentage is, I don't know. It says 100%. So am I done, I don't know. Yeah, that's pretty trippy. That's pretty tricky. We really need to teach just everyone just disabled or not about the importance of nutrition, reading nutrition labels, what's in our food. That's a whole other thing. Like what is in our food. You know, we go and we buy all these different snacks that, you know, just because it says organic or it says natural, right? And then you read the, you read the label and you're like, yeah, other countries don't allow other countries don't allow food coloring, right? Like aren't we the only ones, right? That's why it's wild. You have people that come and visit the States and they, their stomach, It takes them a good week a week and a half for their stomach to adjust to our food. That's how shitty the food is in the States. It's unbelievable. And it's like we were killing our people from the inside out.

Hands down. Like I, I, I'm a huge advocate of, of body positivity, but at the same time there's a difference between being unhealthy as a whole. Just like making poor decisions, not, not taking care of the longevity of your, your temple. Like this is your car Think and people don't look at it like that way. If you don't change the oil in your car for 100,000 miles, how is that car gonna run at about 100,000 miles. Our bodies the same way you've got to feel it properly. You've got to give it, give it love mentally and physically to things not talked about enough nutrition and mental health. Yeah, nutrition only comes up as like, hey, eat the salad so you can lose weight and be skinny and take up less space and be smaller and toned. Yeah. You don't have to be toned to be healthy. And that's the crazy thing. Like it's just like, just eat better food. Like and, and I'm honestly, I'm so passionate about it because of my dad. Like I live with my dad who's £60 overweight. He's type two diabetic and I just watched him kill himself with food every single day and it's the choices that he makes and the more I educate myself, I'm just like, dad, I love you and I want you here for a long time.

Like I'm selfish, I'm very selfish in that. I just want you around forever and you see your loved ones doing this to yourself themselves and it's just like we're not taught anything different and it's just it's so frustrating that it's just all education, proper etiquette and not toxic education, proper education. We shouldn't push people to be supermodel skinny or you got to eat salads to lose weight when that's completely inaccurate. Like just be yeah, just be whoever you are besides education too is like access because I mean even um so like I go to different people's houses and then um and I do therapy with them so I could go to one person's house in the hood and there's a million seven elevens corner stores, not one grocery store and that's like where I go potty on the road, okay, because that's usually like I can get in and out. Nobody looks at me for not buying anything like it's usually clean. Like that's my go to. So I'm like I will literally be in his neighborhood on google maps, like there's a million Mcdonald's Mcdonald's right here, but not one place where someone could get fresh food.

So it's like accesses so fucking bullshit too. Um And then in terms of this like you mentioned the pandemics kind of when you started figuring things out, I think you said, um, food prices, I don't know about, y'all have gone up. My God, Yes. My grocery bills rise about $40 a week. Yeah. I'm just like, it's obscene how a lot. It's a lot. It's pretty high. And so with that in mind, it's like the choices that some people do make because of the limited resources that they have. It's like, that's saddening. It's very sad if you if you actually want to make better choices and can't afford them. Like that's pretty fucked up. Yeah, it's, it's definitely, um, I'm I'm in the process of getting off of government benefits. And so my budget is very tight. Like, I don't, you know, I I choose between food and leisure and every time food wins, like you have to, you have to give up some some things if, And a lot of people just aren't, aren't willing to make that sacrifice and I don't blame them.

You want to have a good time and live while you're here, go have a good time and live while you're here. It's just so frustrating because you see again, I have a lot of people in my life because I was that person I was £30 overweight, I was the one that would choose the cheaper option just to go have a good time later on in the week because I could only afford one or the other and I will say that it solves so many chronic issues for me personally from my chronic pain, my nerve pain, um and it was just through food. I know I did an elimination diet. So like processed foods cause high nerve pain, very high nerve pain, um processed sugar gluten and high amounts of dairy cause extreme constipation and nerve pain. And so it's like, wow, that's what did it for me was like the elimination diet and seeing what was what was serving me and what wasn't, but what serves me and what serves others isn't always the same for all of us. And that's the biggest issue in this whole realm is that people like to do a blanket quick fix a quick sell, right?

You know something about gluten in this country too. And I'm reading more on it, is that the gluten that we have in our flour is in in our processed bleached flour. You know, the dollar flour that you buy at the grocery store is so different than what you find even in other, in other countries. It's all the additives that are in there. It's not whole. It's and that's what's fucking us up. You know, it's like everything else that comes in it and the choices that you make in the different gluten or the different um like it's not all created equal. Exactly, that makes sense. I mean, yeah, I mean there's like to certain things that I eat that I will not stray from like a brand. Like that brand does me good. You know like this protein shake I will not be constipated with optimum nutrition. You know and some people be like oh try this whatever. It's like strawberry watermelon like whatever. Cool sprinkles on top and I'm like no I don't want to find out this one time request bar and that I'm not.

Well that's the other thing a lot of a lot of supplements aren't regulated. They're not regulated in depth the way our foods which are foods that have been regulated well. But like something that I learned was the processing of protein powders. I always thought that I couldn't stomach way And here it turns out it's the way that it's processed because a lot of protein. The cheaper process down sit down, comedian. Um So but the thing is it's cheaper to process protein at a low temperature with introducing high chemicals to it. Which makes it harder for our body to break down. So a lot of times if you notice after having protein that you're bloated, you're stomach's upset or the protein taste like sh it or it doesn't mix Well it's a lot of times the way it's processed. So I use a low temperature process protein. Like I'm specific. I won't stray away from my brand because I know how it's processed. I know that it's my brand. Is it down.

Um first form? Okay. Yeah I've seen that one. Yeah they're vegan power pro it's like iced oatmeal cookie. It's so damn good. So even even like oat milks like totally is like it for me like I don't care who else is making oat milk. Like this works for me. I am not straying, I don't care. Oatmeal is out of stock when you're drinking oat milk this week. Too bad. I can't take any chances anymore. I really can't. Nothing is everything is not made the same. Like you said it's so true. Not at all. And it's really just about informing yourself to the way that we inform ourselves about brands and you know political backgrounds or even just like um just the fact that we pay attention right? Like I think a lot of us just like, oh you know especially if it's folks that are disabled, whether it's newly disabled or whether like you're just going through something, you're just like tired of it. You know, you're just like focused on that and then you forget about like how do I feel when I woke up this morning or?

Okay I ate this at eight and I felt weird at 12 like there's a connection there or like ah it looks like you know I had to I had to replace the toilet the other day right? I cut my arm and I'm over here worried about something else and my arm got infected when I wasn't paying attention like stupid like what were you doing. Um but we do that, we get so caught up over here that we just forget like the things that we pay attention to the listening that we can do makes a difference. My body was telling me that that arm was not okay, but you just didn't, didn't didn't pay attention to know my schedule was full. I had like housework to do, you know, I was like, oh my gosh I'm gonna do this. And I got to do like stupid not until you have a green arm. Is that moss growing on your? What is that? Remember climbing in the woods? Some guy. Yeah. Yeah. We just had to pay attention for real and it's not easy but and it sounds like a lot of work but you know that experimentation with our body is so important in the same way that I experimented as a, you know, one handed lifter.

Nobody, there's no guidebook for that in power lifting. I didn't have a specified power lifter who showed me how to do one handed dead lifts and then dad left for the hook. Like you have to experiment on your own. You're going to have some drawbacks. Same with food. It's like, but then also make sure that you are enjoying it, you know, variation is important or not because you might enjoy not having variation right? That's true. I'm regimented. Hey hey I like my routine, I will say that's what I love about Wheel wad. So I have a consulting business for social media, it's called Wheel me consulting, We help small brands grow their business through social media and we'll watch as one of our clients and so that's what I was in my Lollapalooza for was doing their social work. I actually didn't compete, but I, I love their, their training options because they literally in their training plans every single day. It's for each disability, short stature, upper limb loss, lower limb loss, seated, one seated to visually impaired.

You know, it's, it's literally there's a workout, a training plan, a detailed training plan around your disability and that's something that, you know, 10 years ago wasn't around and, and even up until recently until we know what has gotten a little more known, it's still, it's not known enough. Like more people need to know that this is available for them. You want to, you want a training plan built around your disability, Let's go, let's go right now, like it's, it's beautiful. And then now we're starting to get more recognition and I will say, um, the one thing negative I took away from Lollapalooza and I it pisces me off about a lot of these competitions if you're going to include us fully include us, don't don't do some half as effort because what it felt like was that Wheel wad was running an adaptive competition inside of water appaloosa. It didn't feel like wanda Plaza was including the adaptive athletes and it was a really shitty feeling. Um from a staff standpoint, I hope that the athletes didn't experience that, but from a staff standpoint, it's just like, hey, make a little more effort.

We shouldn't have to be screaming about accessibility the day before the event. We shouldn't have to be like figuring out. So why why don't we have the weights available to us? Because you're only focused on the able bodied elite athletes when they had adaptive athletes are just as much athletes as the able bodied athletes. It's just pisces me off because these people work twice as hard to be successful because it takes us twice the fucking effort just to do one thing Dammit, give us, give us that that recognition. They just said, here's your space in the parking lot, You should be happy like no. Were you involved? You weren't involved last year then? No, because this is my first the last year. I mean, I don't know if that part got better. So physically the setup still shit. But last year, remember mary beth they had I was just going to ask that the cash prizes. Did you hear about that. Do you remember the numbers? It was so like top female lifter was somewhere around 2000. Some like high thousands numbers.

Open Yeah. Open Uh top male, top female and then um overall or something like that. And then you put adaptive athletes at the very bottom, $100 for Top female adaptive athletes, $100 for top male. Like it was it was it was like a huge difference but it was a huge difference. They kind of set up the podium, They didn't even have a podium celebration. And as far as I know, there were no monetary payouts that they just skipped it. Okay, wait for everybody or for there was no podium for anybody. They just like completely bro. But it costs $400 to enter this competition for. Yeah, $400. That's what each athlete paid. Including adaptive athletes. Complete bullshit. That's why I'm gonna reiterate wheel wad. So like wheel wad is having, they created their own games. They're called the wheel wad games. And they actually pay these athletes do what they're supposed to be paid.

It's a competition for adaptive specifically. What Does $400 cover their advertising? $400. That's a lot. And we thought powerlifting needs like 1 10, like, oh my god, that's pricey for $400. They better give you a full wardrobe. I want a tracksuit. I want a sweatshirt, I want a shirt, I want pants, especially with those shitty cash prizes for the 1st and 2nd place winners dollars. Like why? I wonder if that was a response to last year's like slack. It's over. It's not one days, right? It's um over. It was it was friday, saturday, sunday was the whole competition. But the other bullshit thing is they slashed two before we even started two of the adaptive heats got removed the swim and something else. And then on sunday, because of whether they canceled, they tried to cancel the second adaptive heat and kevin O'Gara is like, hell no, this isn't happening.

And he advocated and got us to be able to still compete on sunday for the second event. But it was just it was just like a it was just one bullshit thing after another and I'm like, yeah, it's cool to be here and all like, don't get me wrong and like Justin Medeiros who is the fittest man in the world, he like came out and helped the adaptive athletes and like gave us recognition on his play his page, which was really cool because it's like he's like these athletes worked just as hard and like he made sure to say that and reiterate that, which is, You know, it's huge when were recognized by people that are also putting in the work at the same time like this this event organization should have done it. And wheel wads really advocating with every event that we go into um the only one that we don't really have a say in is crossfit because crossfit just does what crossfit wants to do, but like, again, that's why they created like Saudi Kevin and Johnny. They created their own things. So we'll watch has been around for 10 years. Um and this will be the, this Wheel wad Games is gonna be huge. It's gonna be at a convention center and like they just want adaptive athletes to get the, not only the competition, but the experience that they deserve, we deserve the same fucking experience that these A B athletes get.

We work just as hard. Like, y'all know, y'all know how hard we were. And it's like, even the people that are there and supporting you, it's like, it's like water pollution should be there and supporting and not just like, oh, here you go, you're there anyways, they don't exist. They're not really a part of it. That's pretty shitty. No, that's wild to hear. And like, thanks for sharing that because we don't hear much of that from the field. You know, we see what we see on social media and they get all this applause for including wheel wad. But hey, we don't just want participation trophies. That's what we're working hard on in power lifting in those doing all the work essentially is what it is, right? Y'all shouldn't have had to pay it all. It's crazy. Every, every athlete, every adult and I hate calling adaptive athletes adaptive athletes because we are just as much athletes as they were athletes, right? And it's like every single athlete paid $400 to be there and like I didn't even get a swag bag.

And I'm just like, what the heck is this? Like you had, how many vendors at this event and you couldn't get them to donate. Like like um don't wear headphones, ended up stepping up and giving every athlete a set of headphones, which is so nice. Yeah. Heck yeah, they're great. I love them because they sound pretty good though. So yeah, it's ridiculous. That is so that makes me mad. I mean disappointed, but not surprised. Right. Right. Well, and for those, I am hearing a lot that I mean of course you already know like the booths have to pay to participate as well. They have to pay the booths. Yeah, 1000 $1000. Sometimes it's a lot. It's crazy. So the boost paying the athletes are paying, the Spectators are paying. The Spectators are paying. It's it's I think that as a society, we are so focused on money that we forget about the human experience and and we really need to not be so financially driven and be more experience driven like just spread love spread joy, be there for one another uplift one another.

That's really what life is about, it's about us being better and leaving the world better than we do it if I don't have a profit margin that has no value. Ah it's disgusting. That sounds like right for the human life like that doesn't matter. There's Yeah, that's not even worth anything. I bet. And I bet you they are volunteers to that. It was I bet you didn't even pay the people doing stuff. You know, we were all volunteers. Yeah. You are correct. Nice. Nice. Nice. Great. Fantastic on par with being bullshit. Um Do you have anything related to that before? We like to take a quick break mary beth for that combo specifically. Alright. So we're just gonna awkwardly stare at each other for like five seconds on the youtube video. But the audio nobody will know. Nobody's going to know. How are they gonna forget about the youtube? Alright. Everybody we're back. Um Yeah. Water pollution loser. You trash. We all know you're trash wheel was doing all the work And we need some refunds.

$400. I'm not over it. That's a lot of money. And you are competing three days for the $400 or is it just one? It's three days. So everybody correct. So friday, there were two workouts or two heats. Um saturday, there was only one heat. Sunday, there were two. So saturday was originally supposed to be more heat but they got removed all of the workouts. Of course we award designs and puts out because Yeah. And then we ran the whole thing briefed the judges. Um got the athletes where they need to go. Did the athlete briefing is of course I had to make sure the weights were set up. That was the other thing like they couldn't even get the weights set up right and it was just like for each heat so then it puts us behind and then we look like we're keeping adaptive athletes are keeping everything behind when it's that people just aren't following the fucking spreadsheet that was given to them. Check the spreadsheet. Wait Jessie, What's the heat? Is that like a session is a what? Um it's like um so one of the heaps for example was like a six minute am wrap of a six minute.

Um there was a six minute like shoulder overhead press super sets And it was like 515 of another. It was, it was a lot, wow, no, thank you. So have you, have you competed in water pollution before? Wheel wad before, nope. I've never competed in fitness. Um I was on the national developmental team for wheelchair curling, the sport on ice. Uh Yeah, that was a good time. And I honestly, I was not going to compete after because I left curling to finish my associates degree and just focus on school and the nonprofit and I was like, all right, I'm not going to compete anymore. Like I'm, I'm literally in a huge competition with myself right now and just trying to be number one in my own life and be the best version of me and and really just continue to level up and I was like, I'm not going to compete, I'm not going to compete and then after going to Lollapalooza, I'm like, I gotta get out there. Yeah, that happens to all of us. Once you see like, Sam, how's my calendar, look, I'm strong.

I'm strong. I haven't competed in anything though. I mean, for the most part, it's like cost, right? Like the pandemic has not been kind to everyone, so costs and the travel and the fees. Um, but then also just like the actual events like where they are and like the location, like, I don't really want to go there anymore. I don't really want to be and that I'm good. I'll stay home. It's not even for me, it's not even a pandemic. It's, I don't even want, I just don't want to be around people. I feel like because people kind of forgot how to act. I don't know if you guys have noticed that or not, but like, people really are just so, and I think a lot of it is the last two years and what's happened, but like, people are just mean and they're, they're not as friendly and it's more of like get out of my way type of thing. Yeah. I think a lot of people have had a selfish mindset because everyone is so closed off recently. Wait, were there any like, um, requirements? I know it's an outside competition, but like, I don't know, were they checking for mask or was that a requirement?

No, no, there was, there was no requirements. But also, you know, it's in florida florida's going into the free and mark. Yeah. They don't really care. It's just, it really sucks because there's a lot of people that are like when you're out in the world, like everybody just has a kind of a dark cloud over them and you don't know why you don't know what they're going through. Um But I know definitely I'm at a position where I'm like feeling really burned out from this pandemic. Not even because of my personal situation, but just like, like I'm seeing parents that are quitting their jobs because they don't want to send their kids with cardiac issues to school because we're not allowed to do, you know, mask or like the way that things are reported, like they're scared because like literally they had exposures the first week, so they're like crap. Let me put my kid out just in case and they had to quit their job to stay home because there's no other alternative or like I've lost three people already like, just in the past search the beginning, like after this holiday. So like I'm really hitting the wall. Um And in general, you know, I try not to treat people like ship, but I could see how that's happening to a lot of people that I've known before.

The pandemic and we worked together and I'm like, I could just see that like that dark cloud is getting you and I know I know what I'm going through, I don't know what everybody else is going to do. I don't know, I don't really take anything personal, don't you know, whatever you're doing is what you're doing, but I know I'm starting, I'm getting there, I'm pretty burned out, I'm over it. I think, I think we're all pretty much there too, but it's not at the end of the day, it's not going anywhere, it's definitely gonna be like the flu and cold, it's gonna be here forever, like it's, it's not, and I don't think any of us, I don't, I personally am not ready to come to terms with that uh because I, I would like life to just like go back to tonight so much chaos and this like, constant feeling of distress I feel like is how, how we're made to feel right now across the world. It's not only in America, but it's like this constant stress of like holy crap, I, so I had covid back over thanksgiving um and I end up giving it to my dad and he spent three weeks in the hospital and so we're actually celebrating christmas here in january now because he was in the hospital over christmas and we haven't had a chance to do it and so it's like that for me was like holy crap, I'm like, you know, until I feel like until it comes into your house, you're like, oh, you know, like I got to be a little better because I'm not gonna stop living my life, but at the same time, like after I got back from Miami, what do I do?

I quarantined for five days straight. Like I'm not gonna get my dad's sick again, I'm gonna be responsible about it. Damn it. Like I'm not gonna stop living my life, but at the same time, I'm going to be responsible for my loved ones. And I think that's where there's a big MS misinterpretation with people is like, it's like, hey, just be responsible in your own life. As far as like if you are at a place that I'm in Miami that's a high, high transmit place, right? So I'm like, I'm not gonna write, so I'm like, I'm not going to come home and especially, you know if people that if I was exposed to it, I'm not going to come home and give it right back to my dad and put him right back where he was like, or give it to people at the gym and go out and live my life. So at home workouts five days of, of quarantine. And I also had a cough. Like be responsible. That's, that, that's the biggest thing right now is just like be responsible. People, fuck yeah, not many people are doing that and it's no, it's pretty annoying.

It's pretty annoying. I know it's changed a lot of people in the way that they work um and their job situation or their school situation, but it kind of sounds like you are already starting to grow something new. Was that because of the pandemic? You shifted or not really related, Not really related. I just I am at a place where I know damn well, I can't go work for normal 9-5. I I just I have no desire to do that and I really want to focus on my acting career and building that. And so I need income in the meantime. And so I'm like, what am I passionate about? And how can I make money from it? And I'm like, I'm passionate about helping people. I'm passionate about fitness. I don't know, I help people with fitness, I'll get my personal training certificate, we'll get in it. And so that's kind of how it it came. And I'm working on building an app um just to help people to have at home workouts, because I I'm a coach on like an at home platform, but people don't want to come to the live classes, they don't want to be around others. So it's like, I understand that I'm trying to meet people where they are.

I think that's the most important thing that we can do. Um so often I would come into a situation with judgment on the other person and I realized how counterproductive that was to everybody involved and so letting go of judgment and just meeting people where they are meeting yourself where you are and then going from there is huge. Oh yeah. And giving people access when they still want those same resources. Right? That's great. Yeah. That's pretty wild. I know mary beth has been changing a lot of things with this pandemic. Have I? I got like three times like four different jobs by now I tried everything under the book. I became a salesperson. It was amazing. But it brought me to the amazing job that I have now, you know, it brought my wine history and my sales history and my management um all together. But the reason why I moved is also because the pandemic allowed us to open our eyes about the different relationships we had around us, you know, relationships in our house, the relationship, the blood relationships of friendship.

Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. My I feel like my my personal sense of urgency to be successful right now is 100% because I want to get out of my parents basement. So when I got paralyzed, I rent the basement for my parents. It was completely set up for a wheelchair user before I was injured. So I have a roll in shower bars beside the toilet and all I had to do was put a ramp and a lift in, wow! Yeah, I'm I'm very connected spiritually to our higher power and I'm like I understand I understand the purpose okay. And I was like now I'm seven years post and like ah this makes sense. Ah I see. I understand. All right. And it allows me to lean into my journey. But I as much as I love having the accessibility of this basement as much as I love having very cheap rent because my rent is next to nothing. Um I need out of here. Her call for help blink twice if you want us to come I'll try.

I think it's like 16 hours. I'll be there. My flight got canceled three times when I tried to leave Miami. Um So I ended up having to ride back. Yeah we got snow up here. So I had to ride back with two of the guys they were driving to Raleigh and so they made a two hour detour just to drop me off at my car at the airport. And he had I'm not going to complain because it was plush but he had a Tesla and so we had to stop every two hours, two hours. You know, It was like 20 minutes and it was so quick. But it was it was nice because it was like being in a couch like the secret. I'm not gonna lie. The only good thing about that thing was the seeds. They were plushy all I need to find a test cell somewhere. Now. That's hilarious. Yeah. That's pretty nuts. Oh yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I definitely made some changes in the people that I talked to or don't talk to anymore blood family like you said or people that I choose to be my family right?

Like it's kind of like the like damn like this everything is stressful right now. I don't want you anymore because you're stressful like like I definitely got there and like if you aren't adding value into my day, like my time, I think that's the other thing is we don't realize how limited our time is truly in the day and what we truly wasted on. And so often we wasted on interactions and experiences that aren't going to add value to the long term version of of where we want to be if it's not bringing you joy, if it's not educating you in some way Like why are we doing it? Like I have sucking the life out of you. It's not. Yes. My best friend who I love her to death. I really do, she was with me every single day in the hospital when I got injured, drove an hour and a half to the hospital just to be there. But man, every time I have a conversation with her it's draining because it's just constantly something's wrong, constantly in distress and I'm like, oh is there any good?

I love you. But like is is there I I want you to have some good like that's some good stuff happen. You have a cute baby girl like you're growing a family, you just got married like and I think so often we focus on on what's going wrong and what's negative in our life that we forget about all the good Because there's so much of it. There really is when you break down your life like you have a roof over your head, are you driving a car? Are you talking to me on a smartphone? That's a freaking iPhone $1,000 phone? Like yo I think we need to count our blessings for real because we are so caught up in in this need and this want for more and more and more that we forget about all we truly have. Yeah, I think it's different too because there's some people that will be like, you know, hey, I need to talk to you about this and just make me feel some type of way and you're just like, oh well it could be worse that I feel like it's a little different, right? Like that's like, okay, like you're just presenting nothing bad exists. But um I definitely see a lot more about just gratitude and like people that are doing like morning reflections about like or just like we talked about earlier, like just autonomy and like being able to see where you can choose how to control like things that your control and not in your control and just going through that process in your head definitely makes a difference.

Like it doesn't mean that nothing sucks right? No life. Yeah, but it's like, it's like all of it right? And like the ship that the shitty part that I can do something about. Okay, great. I'll do this like the city part I can't do anything about. Well that's just gonna suck. All right, fine. You can control and then manifest more good. Also like checking in with like I and I understand two best friends. There is no line, there is no line. But it is important to check in with those who you are going to vent to. Like, are you in a position to take all of this weight off my shoulders right now. If you're not, I'll call you tomorrow. That's true. That's something new I've learned for sure. Just being like, hey, can I talk to you about this? Or like I really want to talk about whatever that affected me today. Is that okay? You know Because you never know. And you could be having a shooting day two and but then you have to help fix somebody else's problems and then no, I can get messy really fast now.

Just get burned out. So I fixed it. I hope you're listening. Turn off the phone, throw it. Problem solved. Never make any boundaries. Never check in. Just stop answering now, that's true. I'm sorry. It's like eric thomas says you know right number wrong time because that's for real. Like I'm on a mission right now. Y'all have to get out of this damn basement. Like legit. I am on a mission. Yeah and I just I don't have time for the distraction. Like I love you. I do I love you so much but like I gotta I have to I have to give it to me, I have to focus on me. I have to give my time back to me right now into to my future because it's the time is now. Like my dad is not in the best health. We live in a three story house. He can't even go up and down the stairs. Like my parents are seriously considering downsizing as well and they deserve to their about to retire like right like right with no elevator dammit.

There's an outdoor there's an outdoor lift um for to get from the main floor to the basement for me. But that's about you but Not to the 3rd floor, right? Not to his room. And so like and that's the thing like I'm I'm so much in a place where it's I don't have a choice, I can't fail like I have to make this work. And so that's why I'm so like my phone stays on do not disturb. I don't get text notifications. I don't get any social media notifications. I literally get on posts, respond to comments, interact with people that are supporting my mission and I get back off. Like I have A bigger bigger mission than what every other person has the luxury of doing right now. Like I don't have a stable income because I choose not to do a 9-5 job and that's fine. But this is the life I chose for myself and I'm going to go after it and I'm sorry if I don't answer the phone like I am, but I gotta put me first and I think we are so caught up in pleasing people a lot of times that we forget, we have to put our future, our success, our goals first.

Like you can have relationships with people. Yeah, but don't don't let that be what controls your the trajectory of your life. You have to control the trajectory of your life and where you can. And and that that's the biggest thing for me right now. And so like journaling, that's something I started doing every single day. I try not to vent to people. I I vent to that notepad, you know, one day it's going to make a hell of a good book. Putting it down on paper though. Does help some and I know some people put it on social media captions or however way they see fit, but that makes putting the thoughts down where you could see them and getting it from your head to somewhere else. Like that power really shifts and you mentioned mental health, like that's a really big thing too, is like putting that barrier up when you can't take that responsibility right now from somebody else. Like I need my me time. I'm sorry, I'm not going to respond to your texts or calls even though you're checking in, I'm vent or sorry, I'm, I'm um yeah, a huge, huge advocate for self love and, and self help.

Um I believe, you know, we come in this world alone, we go out of this world alone. Like we've got to take care of that one person we're stuck with the most. That's us. Like how often do we sit in our own thoughts, sit in our own feelings sitting on emotions. I know there's a lot of times I use music podcast, anything just to drown out the noise. That is my own thoughts. It's like the more time that I sit in them and get to know them, get to understand them, get to dig deeper into them the more I can address that deep level shit that's truly holding me back. That creates this negative self talk. That creates this negative perception of who I am, what I can accomplish where I can go because in reality we, we truly have the power to be whatever the we want to be like. And it took getting paralyzed for me to realize that and I'm like, fuck man, how much we take for granted every day and it just, it makes you realize like just live it live for now. Like stop letting this ship that's not going to matter in in five minutes, 10 minutes from now however long from now that ship that's not gonna matter.

Don't let that control your day. Don't let that take your time because our time here is so damn limited and you've got to use it to its fullest potential all of the time. Like for real we have so much we can get out of this life. We truly do. It's cool to see to how everybody handles his like historical trauma or things like that because I feel like that's like the things that I have endured in in the past, in my childhood or whatever the loss um that I've endured that's allowed me to not just look at the positive things in life but also look at how strong of a person I am that empowerment that comes from that. Like fuck a lot of that was negative. It still is sometimes it is hard, but I wouldn't be here today if I didn't keep fighting for myself and fighting for my mom or my dad.

Um whatever the case may be, it's just like the way that people respond to these is always so great to see. Yeah, I definitely agree with you there. I have to agree with that as well. It was like I think back to able body jesse and I'm like there were so many times where ship would happen and I thought it was the end of the world and then I got paralyzed and I thought back to some ship that happened that I thought in that moment was just as bad as getting paralyzed I felt and it's like what degree of trauma, you know, like the trauma feels so bad, but then you experience something else and it trumps that feeling and it's like the amount of value we put into the feeling of what we're experiencing as well. That's so true. Yes. Yes. Yeah. Whatever you perceive is like absolutely. I mean that's also why I just like um it's kind of a way that I used to be and then I got away from it, but it's like, I don't really care what everybody else is thinking right?

Like, you know, I got away from, I don't know how that's how I used to be in school and somehow I lost that. I can't tell you how, but like that alone is just freeing like I don't care. Like, you know, if I make content and my elbows ashy, like I don't I don't care, I don't care. I'm not going to make sure my hair looks nice, I don't care. Whatever I think looks good, looks good. You know what I mean? Like people are like, you know, there are people that don't talk to me because they don't like when I ask them questions about what they're doing, like when you mentioned like, oh you came home in quarantine? Like, like there are people who would literally, like if I ask them about that would be upset and I'm like, you know what? I don't care. I think it's right. It's right. Like if you want to get mad, that's a you problem. You know, like it's not my problem anymore. So I know that has made the biggest difference to me. Like the way that people react and the way that people respond is not my problem, but recognize that that takes growth. Like everything that you two have gone through and how you react and respond to these situations or just the lack of giving a fuck that took growth for reals?

I used to care what people commented on my social media like that. I don't know. It's just, it's, it's amazing to mature from that. It is and I definitely think the events of my life have played into it. You know, like my mom died. It's only been like four years yesterday was the anniversary actually. Um And when I started getting sick, it's only been five or six years right? Until you kind of get like a lot more people in your life with that, right? When you're sick, everybody's like, well have you tried this? Have you tried that? You know, everybody's in your ear and then I'm dealing with like this whole thing of my mom dying a funeral and all this, everybody's in my ear and after a while I'm just like, you know what? Why did I, why did they start giving a funk? I'm gonna go back to not. Yeah. Can I go back to not? I'm just like, I'm doing great. It's freeing. Yeah. It's a great neighborhood. You, everyone should move here now because I'm not clouded up. Exactly. Actually, it's terrible. Don't come. The prices are right to worry about. Yeah. And like gravitating that energy because we have a lot of energy.

We choose where that will go. Yeah. And it's not that it's like the trauma made me stronger. Like I know that that's like kind of cringe depending on how you say it right? But it's not necessarily that it's just like we took something bad and figured out how to make something, how to grow from it or grow from that like place in your life, right? Like not to get bogged down to the bottom of the ocean. It's not necessarily like, I don't know, I just, I have so much gratitude for my experience. Like I would never undo being paralyzed when I choose to get paralyzed to experience this. Probably not, but I would never, I would never take it back. Like the experience is so rewarding in itself because then you get to meet other individuals with different disabilities. Like y'all, I mean then you get to have the whole experience of life that you would have never have had it. It challenged you to think more critically to change your view of people with disabilities because I definitely had that view of that people with disabilities weren't capable of anything and it came down I was just ignorant I had never been exposed.

And and the more that we expose people the more that they'll have a little bit more of an understanding, the less that we will be outcast in society is it seems to feel sometimes and I really think that you know we we educate so much in school about different things. Why aren't we educating in depth about the disability civil rights movement? Why aren't we in depth educating about people with disabilities what they're capable of? The paralympics? Like let's let's educate these kids more about people with disabilities and it will normalize us because then when they see a disabled person in the store and their parents try to pull them away they'll be like no no I learned about this like kids are so vocal and so honest and so raw and so it's like why why is everyone or even you know it's like foreign languages are required and why not why not add A. S. L. Why isn't a cell being taught? Why not make A. S. L. A. Thing? I don't get that. That doesn't make sense either. I'm learning A. S. L. This year for that reason because I just want to have more conversations with bad people.

Yeah it's so true about kids. and it's funny because, you know, I work with kids with tons of different disabilities, totally different ranges. And even those kids will be like flabbergasted. They'll be like, why does she walk like that? I'm like, dude, you're in a wheelchair, dude, what are you doing? Like, you know, like, it's not even like, it's just like an idea that needs to be going on. It needs to be taught, it needs to be discussed. It needs to be talked about because nobody even talks to him and uses the word, right? Like nobody says anything about it, or, and it's not that I'm trying, you know, everybody needs to call attention to it and like, blast it into space. But even just acknowledging it, that you might be different, Who cares? Right? So even him seeing other kids that are looking different, he's like, what the heck? Yeah, It needs to be seen and talked about a lot more. Even in our own families, like Children of, you know, my cousins or far removed family see me for the first time and they have questions and the parents sometimes don't let them ask them like, no, no, no, let's, sometimes I'll joke around and say a dinosaur bit off my hand, but let me do, let me do that on my own accord first, and then we'll talk about how everybody is different, literally, bodies are different.

Yeah. And not all Filipinos, like the same. Exactly. Like we're not, we're all nobody's a monolith. I think that's also a problem. And um we talked about this stump kitchen a little bit because uh, was it april was limb difference awareness month? Every month is yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. But last year stump kitchen Alexis did this thing where other people went on her platform. So it wasn't just like her face, right? Like she has a platform is youtube channel like a nice following whatever. But it was like other people. And I was like, you know what? Like, I'm really glad you did that because that really opened my eyes because like to me, I'm like, I know Alexis, you know, she posted by limb difference. I know mary beth like I'm done. There's no other intersection I need to know about right. Like there's no other experience. I need education on. I'm done here. Like it's stupid, but our brain does that right? Because it's easier. There's so much going on. It's easier to just categorize things. I'm like, well I'm done here, but like we're never done.

There's always something to learn. We compartmentalize a lot. I feel like um and that's, I mean that's everything though in our life, not just when it comes to disabilities, but it's like I think moving forward as a collective, how can we, the critical question we need to ask ourselves is how can we be better at educating people and making that education stick. Um, and and make them, you know, think twice because I know in my immediate friends circle and family, like something that we randomly notices houses with wheelchair ramps. I never would have thought of it before. I never noticed that, but I'll be driving. I'm like ship the house has a wheelchair ramp. I didn't it like just the small, the smallest things now are brought to our attention. So I think the more that we continue to educate continue to be seen is the more that will get the change that we're advocating for. That's why I started acting. I want to be, I want to be in that area. I want to be there so people can see for real. That's the whole reason that I act is so that people can understand that people with disabilities are hirable, that you don't have to hire somebody to play our role.

We are coming capable and they move their legs every time. And I was like, like they're not even paralyzed. You even go here like that's freaking nuts. I'm with it. I'm with it. Um, we've been talking for a while, so I do just want to make sure was there anything that you wanted to go over with us discuss? Get off your chest that we didn't, we didn't really get into. I feel like we got into a lot. She got water police off her chest. Yes, you did hold chest me off. I think the biggest thing that my like my a lot of people um I'm aggressive. I'm very aggressive and upfront and just like don't allow society to disable you more than you are. Y'all like for real society will tell you what you're capable of based on their perception of your reality. That doesn't have to be a reality. And I'm just speaking from somebody who allowed society to tell me I had to walk again to be accepted for the first two years of my injury.

I spent countless hours, countless dollars on Petey and my recovering. Yeah, but will I ever walk? Probably not. Do I care about that? No. My life is just as full as a wheelchair user and your life can be just as full with your disability. Don't allow society to take that away from you. Put that on a shirt that's nothing to add. That's a scene. Yeah, I think we're gonna call it. Um Where can people find you on the internet? Hey, y'all um Follow well with me. Foundation at wheel with me on all platforms. Uh definitely check out wheel wad at wheel wad. Um and then you can find me at jesse straw ham on all platforms. I appreciate you guys. Message me if you want to have a conversation always down. Um and if you gained value from this episode, please share it with an actual friend texted to them. Let them know say, hey this was really good. I really want to share this with you. I think you can gain value and we appreciate you guys support.

Okay, perfect. That's it. I think. I think she's got it, cut, your hired, got it covered disabled girls out. That's it. That was great. Thanks for listening to disabled girls who left. We appreciate all of your support and everyone who's taken the time to show us some love. Don't forget to subscribe, rate already. Review of our channel. We're on Apple podcasts, Spotify player, FM, google podcasts and more. You can also find us on instagram at disabled girls who left.

E58: Being Wheel with Jesi
E58: Being Wheel with Jesi
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