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Sep 11, 2018

Post #1


BETTER LATE THAN NEVER (I had actually written this post this morning, but am only just getting around to posting it now, as it's been a very hectic day).


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Good morning everyone!


Last week I conducted a poll on Chatability’s Facebook Page of which you all would rather see appear as a regular weekly interactive post. Lots of you voted - which is awesome - but overall, as you might’ve guessed, Motivational Mondays won! (Although Wise-Advice Wednesdays did see quite a bit of action as well; those of you that voted for this might be interested to check out my bi-weekly opinion column in the Peterborough Examiner titled Tessa Takes Charge, which is largely geared towards life advice!)


My #MotivationalMondays topic for you this morning is that, it’s okay to not be motivational all the time.


So often in my own daily life, I find myself constantly taking on and carrying the weight of being a constant source of inspiration to everyone around me. Very, “if I can do it, you can, too!” but this isn't always the case. It’s exhausting to be “on” all the time, and to pressure yourself into believing you are the only one who can make a change for your community (in my case, primarily the disabled community, but also the LGBTQ+ community). There are other people like you who can do the job too, and you’re being unfair to yourself if you convince yourself you have to take on all the responsibility to represent your people.


Making change is about a leadership, but that doesn’t mean the leader has to be one person - it can be several people, anyone who feels comfortable raising their voice, fist, crutch, whatever they can, to meet social injustice and conquer it with a challenge to do better.


In my case, a constant issue I find I am always fighting for is trying to make people understand that it simply is not enough to just meet the standards of public accessibility, but going past those standards to prove that we should be living in a society that actually wants disabled people present, and to feel comfortable in their skin. The point about going past standards, is to make people with disabilities feel less burdensome (because we aren't burdens), which ties into the infamous disability argument "fix society, not me."


Short but sweet, I hope you readers or listeners found this to be helpful, and somewhat inspiring. It has been a very difficult day for myself personally, so writing something about motivation was not an easy task. But I knew that you had all interacted with the poll, and I didn't want to let you down. <3


So please! Let me know what you thought of this first week's episode of #Chatability 's #MotivationalMondays ! Leave a like, share your thoughts in the comments, and please pass on to any friends and family you think might benefit from this post.


Remember, together we can create an all-inclusive future; we are all leaders in the movement!


Sending love,

Tessa May Smith​

New Posts
  • Happy Monday my friends! I am terribly sorry it's been a bit since I've lasted posted a #MotivationalMonday shtick; like a lot of students, my mental health has been getting the best of me. As some of you here may know / experience as well, my chronic pain has been at an all time high that's been causing low-activity, and high-fatigue. So this is just a short 'n sweet post to remind you all I'm still here; and that you're all still here (for each other) too! Even if I'm not able to be consistently present on Chatability, I wanted to remind you that I'm present in your lives as a means of support, and to remind you you're not alone. Reaching out on my own website that I've created too, helps remind me that I'm not alone either. So reach out to one another! Keep sharing the word, and keep going. For uni/college kids (in Peterborough, anyway): it's almost Reading Week!!
  • Good morning everyone, and Happy Monday! Once again, I am terribly sorry for my absence the past two weeks almost. I suppose a part of my embodiment and trying to run this site single-handed (pun intended for my arm amp friends out there!), takes its toll and can be hard to keep up. Additionally, I’ve been going through the throes of my own health recently, but all is well. To get you started this week, I’m shifting gears and introducing our first shoutout recipient: Emilee Schevers! Before giving you a little intro about Emilee, I’d first like to recognize that she was the individual who made me realize Chatability needed a more accessible age range for students. As I mentioned, post-secondary institutions were my main focus because that’s where I currently stand (again, pun!) with my activism, but I was also a person with disabilities in my high school years. My whole life, really! I always forget about my prosthetic eye as a disability to be honest, simply because it’s been with me since infantry. Although nowadays, I do find it to be more of a barrier, as my social life shifts its mold. Anyways! Without further ado, here’s Emilee :) - - - Hey Tessa!! It’s Emilee Schevers. I’m so excited to see what you’ve created. I’ve followed you ever since you spoke at my school like 5 years ago and then again at my high school, TAS, twice, and have been completely inspired ever since! I’m 17 and am visually impaired and am finishing up my last year at TAS now. I would love to help out in any way I can. I’m excited about Chatability because only in the last few year have I become involved in the blind community and it has changed my life completely. I find that there is such a strong connection between persons with disabilities because we all have something in common no matter what. I used to never be able to talk about my visual impairment until I found people who could relate to. I think it’s so so important for people with disabilities to know that they can always have someone to talk to or somewhere to express their struggles or successes! - - - There you have it, our first Chatability member reaching out to express support for her fellow members! Awesome stuff. Please remember that if you’re interested in the shoutouts/ambassador initiative to shoot me an email at chatability@gmail.com with your name, age, school, your disability(ies), and why you’re psyched to be apart of our community. I hope this also encourages folks to get involved on our website! We have plenty of forums on our ‘Connect’ page ( https://www.chatability.org/connect ), that are open and available to you to Express Yourself, and get the things not everyone understands, off your chest. Sending lots of love and positive vibes on this Monday morning. Have a great day! - Tessa May Smith
  • This past weekend was Homecoming at my University. I didn't go. A seemingly easy decision to make, it was hard to decide whether to go or not because I felt obligated just because of the word "home" - language plays a large role in my life. I kept wondering, "Was I not apart of my Trent family if I didn't attend?" "What would I miss out on?" "Would I regret it if I didn't go?" It now being Monday, and homecoming having passed, and everyone hungover as hell diving into a new week, I can say with ease that I don't regret not going. These types of events honestly remind me of school dances - particular prom - or any overrated holiday like New Year's Eve or Valentine's day; it's only a big deal that you don't go if you make it to be. Because I recognized that the activities of homecoming didn't really suit my personality-type, I was able to feel peaceful about my decision making. Peer pressure doesn't cease to exist as you get older, in fact it can become more difficult to brush off. However, if you are sure of yourself, and know yourself well enough, saying "no" to things you don't really want to go to, becomes a heck of a lot easier. This is not to say I don't have love and pride for my school, but not a strong love with/for alcohol; it is unfortunate to me that this is what HOCO revolves around. I know this may be beginning to sound redundant, but it just makes me wonder how many other students out there are like me in the inside, but feel as though they have to portray something different on the outside..? So what did I do this weekend instead, you might be wondering? Physically, absolutely nothing. Mentally, I tried very hard to do a lot of work that's been piling up, and I honestly couldn't even bring myself to get it all done, just because my entire embodiment was exhausted. Being unproductive is okay sometimes though, this is your body telling you to slow down and just crash. Sometimes we need a reboot. The problem with my need for a reboot, was that I went almost three weeks just continuously traveling and working, so I was bound to burnout. On this note, I think it's important for you, reader, to consider how you might alleviate any stress you can to avoid this complete crash. It isn't wise to keep going and going until you drop, and after these last couple weeks I think I've finally learned my lesson on that. It's okay to take things off your plate, and make time to do nothing. Nothingness can be essential to how you live within your own body, and discover new things about yourself. Life is largely about making money come in, sure, but it's also about investing in yourself, your soul, and your Experience in the body you're in. So we got a little spiritual this early afternoon, I hope that's alright; as always, I just want to try my best to inspire you and set you off on the right track with a good 'ol #MotivationalMonday ! Love, Light & Peace Tessa 💖✨