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and learn from others as we overcome barriers and learn to  live a happy and healthy life with a disability.
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"An Apple A Day"
I'm disabled, now I can't even do my hobbies anymore, Right?
By Jimmy Apple
   Some people seem to believe that because of the fact that you have become disabled, your life has stopped and you are reduced to no more than a lump of
clay who's very being is reduced to a lump of mud staring at a TV screen. Watching TV is not a hobby! Sleeping is not a hobby! Eating, Breathing, Drinking,
Pooping and Peeing are not hobbies!

 Being disabled doesn't relegate you to a life sentence of "hard Time" for a crime you didn't commit. Sometimes being disabled can remind us of the line of,
the band, Queen's song, 'We Are The Champions'...."I've paid my dues, time after time. I've done my sentence but committed no crime..." We've not broken
any laws yet we are confined. We've lost our freedom to come and go as we please because of our disability. On the other hand, people on the outside looking
in at us believe we are living the life of Riley. They think that we are somehow living a life of leisure being home and getting paid to do so. They actually have no
idea of the pain we endure, physically and mentally.

 That "free money" they believe we get to stay home is less than half of what we made before we became disabled, yet are bills are still the same plus
we've added more to the pile. And, just to clarify, the money isn't free. It isn't simply being "given" to us. It is money from insurance that we were forced to buy
by the government. I's called "Disability Insurance". So, to all those who think folks with disabilities have it easy, all I can say is...Take It On The Hop...not
only did we get permanently hurt and change our lives, we make less money, have more bills, have more day to day difficulties, have outsiders scrutinizing our
every move and people accusing us of taking advantage of taxpayers and systems. Some people feel if we aren't living a life of drudgery and misery, we
are aren't really disabled and must be faking.

 The sad part of this is that it is not only those looking in at us who think that our lives must be a miserable one, in some cases, it is the disabled person who
is thinking this way as well. They seem to feel that if there is ever any joy in their life, if a smile even attempts to cross their lips then it will not appear that
they are suffering enough and others won't believe that they are really disabled! I have a theory about this, I believe in some cases, disabled people who
believe their lives must be miserable twenty four - seven so people don't believe they are faking being hurt are the same people who have always doubted
others. But, thats fodder for another article...

 
What is a Hobby?

 A hobby is an activity done regularly in one's leisure time for pleasure.

 Believe it or not, a disabled person has limited leisure time just like every one else. Yes, I know it may be hard for some people to wrap their head around
but a disabled person's life is not one big ball of leisure time to be spent anyway they please. A disabled person has to work at several things like
recovering as much as possible, relearning daily activities, keeping doctor and therapist appointments, taking medications,  and so on. This may not seem
like much tom some folks but then again, those folks are not inn the disabled person's shoes. That aside, completing these tasks are not leisurely
activities for a person with a disability, in fact they can be downright hard and painful.

                                                                                                                
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 It is just as important for a person with a disability as it is for a non disabled person to have a hobby to distract them from the everyday grind. Of course
the type of hobby is going to vary, for example, it would be almost impossible for a person with a physical disability to go play golf, rock climbing, scuba
diving, surfing, skydiving and so on in their spare time.

 Some people can become cavalier when it comes to hobbies for the disabled, such as , give them a book of crossword puzzles to keep them busy. Really?
How long would that "keep you busy" for? Me, I'd throw the damn thing out of the window. Reading a book is right there with it. Now, it's not that I don't like
crossword puzzles or reading, I enjoy them very much but they are not what I consider a hobby. I also enjoy watching TV but it is not a Hobby. Take sports, I like to
watch sports as a pass time but I like to play sports as a hobby. To me, a hobby is actively doing something and not just passively watching it. For a disabled
person, this can be a bit of a problem, but not if you put your head to it.

 Here are a few hobbies that disabled folks can get involved in for little or no money:

 --
Create a Website. Believe it or not, there are many places where you can begin a website with no experience and learn as you go,

 
--Create a Blog. Again, there are plenty of places to go where you need no programming experience just an idea to blog about.

 
--Create a Video Channel or Vlog. If you have a smart phone or a webcam on your computer,m you're all set.

 
--Create a Podcast. This will cost a couple of bucks but not much and there are places to host your podcast for free.

 
--Write an E-Book. You'll be surprised how easy this actually is to do.

 You're probably looking at this and saying..."Well Apple, you are really out of your mind!" No, not really. Creating something is really one of the best
hobbies to have. Having people see your hobbies and comment on them is even better. Who knows, you might even make new friends as you go.

 Over the next few weeks, we're going to be going over how to get started with these creative hobbies as well as others such as creating message boards,
chat rooms and meeting people all around the world.

 Having a hobby, especially for a disabled person is very important. It gives them something to take their mind off their problems, even if for only short
periods of time. It also gives us something to talk about other than disability, medicine and doctors. Believe it or not, a hobby can help a person feel good
about themselves mentally which will also add to their physical well being.