I identify as a human, woman, American, writer, voracious reader, Dr. Pepper addict, cat lover... who happens to be DeafBlind.
My disability does not define who I am. It is significant in the way it limits me, but it's not a major component in how I view myself.
How do you view me?
Most people say I am amazing, inspiring and encouraging.
I hate those words. They have no meaning to me. I've heard them so many times they lost all value as a compliment.
If you can't say something nice, don't say anything.
If you can't find other words to use, don't say anything.
After 20 years of fake praise, I don't know how to determine if praise is real. I assume that it is not.
I've done things that I am proud of. I won custody of my child. I earned an MFA in creative writing. I published a book. I'm the star of a documentary film.
Even with those accomplishments, only a few people can praise me and have it hit the mark.
Let's talk about the film. The title is: I'm So Amazing. I was not a happy girl when I learned about the title.
Hold on, there. The title is based on a sarcastic, snarky poem I wrote. The purpose of the poem is to get people to understand that I'm not amazing at all.
The film explores themes like inspirational pornography, lack of service and the need for accessibility. Many people are in this film to help tell this story. It isn't all about me. I think the final result is brilliant.
We had a sneak peak in August and the premiere in September. Both were held at Kent State University.
The reviews and comments were positive. It seemed like the film achieved the goals of changing perspective and educating people about disabilities. Even Joseph learned something new.
When talking to people after the movie, they said that I was amazing, inspiring and encouraging. I wanted to cry. Did they get anything out of viewing the film. Did they understand?
FYI, the movie will be shown at the Cleveland Clinic on April 12th, 2023. It is open to the public. Admission is free, but online registration is required.
The film is not available online or for personal use.
So, yes, I published a book and I'm in a film. Your prise makes me feel like a fraud.
I'm not special. I've had a few moments of triumph, but in reality, I haven't done much of anything.
Over the past five years, I've been struggling with depression and PTSD. Lack of motivation has been devastating. Why do you think I stopped blogging? Every thought I wanted to write, I couldn't do it.
I spend most of my day sitting in my recliner, reading, thinking, reading and napping. I hurt. I'm drowning in physical and mental pain. And you thinking I'm inspiring?
Angie C. Orlando
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