Updated: Sep 19, 2022
A not so gentle reminder that burn-out, post-traumatic stress, depression, anxiety, bipolar, ADHD, add, schizophrenia, madness, psychosis, being on the spectrum, or other neurodiverse ways of knowing and being, chronic pain, and congenital, acquired, physical and invisible disabilities- these things don't care for how we define and place value on "the work" (or how, who, and what we deem "fit", "acceptable", "enough", "valid" work).
If you happen to have more energy, a "stronger" more "fit" physical mind-body (see the eugenics and yucky Darwinism creeping in). Or if you happen to be in reach of resources, and support systems, or access to funds and wellness-based modalities, which then offers you more stamina and an abundant reserve of energy, or more than others. Great. Gold Star. You Get a Cookie. Yay for you/us/them. Keep it to yourself. (I never do, so, I don't actually expect you to either, but let's try). Or at the very least, not shame others for them not being able to do the same things we can do, how we do. It's unrealistic and rather "white supremacist capitalist patriarchy" of us all. I do it. Have done it. Trying not to do it. You should too.
It's always when it feels directed at me or others "like me" that I realize how ableist our cultures really are. It shouldn't have to take the personal experience to believe what others have been saying about their oppression. Disabled communities have long told us that our systems and infrastructures are set up to be ableist. And we in turn also are. They remind us that disability is a category that can potentially affect us all, across the board. To not have to think about these barriers all of the time is a privilege not afforded to many disabled people who deal with the added burden of social and political compulsory ableism, to use Robert McRuer and other disability activists.
People work at different paces and ways. Understand that. Stop demanding that they do the work how you think is best. All of it is needed. Most of us are doing the best "work" we can (especially now). Folks who move slower/differently do some of the most work. But so rarely are those forms of legitimate and difficult work deemed valuable or enough. Also, stop underestimating burnout.
If this resonates, please pass it along and share it with others. If it doesn't, that's okay too. Like others, I and my words are not meant for everyone. If it is for you, please consider making a donation to paypal.me/DeeArchives. I'm also on Buy Me a Coffee at DeeArchives. Thanks for stopping by.
Until next time, in solidarity.
Photo Cred: Dorothy Attakora-Gyan
Image Description: A photo of a bedroom.