Words by Julie - Living Life With Paralysis

My Apology

It seems as though I owe you an apology. I am good. Well, fine…better than I was four and a half years ago. I’m happy that I am proud of all that I have written; because reposting something from the past may cause you, or someone you know, grief! Thank you to the Lucknow area early-riser for the head’s up this morning! The next message was from my mother and I had my explanation ready. I have not been hacked.

Theo’s been a bit frustrated lately when he has to “sign in” to so many places for paying bills, volunteering, work and kids school stuff. As a family we’ve been talking more about internet safety, privacy, protection and passwords. Who do you think has the most passwords? Ella and Oliver each have two passwords, I have a variation of the same one given to me when I started at Guelph, (Insert Ella here: “They had email back then?”) and Theo has, in his words: “one hundred”. No wonder he swears at his computer. Anyway, thank you for thinking to warn me that something was amiss, alas, all is well.

In my quest to find an old photo I must have hit “repost” on an blog from 2017. My photo organization is so not organized that I couldn’t find a particular picture that I knew I must have somewhere, because I had posted it before. So I Googled my name and “bike summit” in order to find it. Yes, that is how poorly organized my photos truly are. They are somewhere between old phone, google drive, new blackberry, google photos and now drop box. Found it.

Julie on stage in front of an audience giving a standing ovation at the Bike Summit 2017.
Bike Summit Toronto 2017

I was looking for this photo, taken at the 2016 Ontario Bike Summit. It is where I think I first felt like I was starting to hit my stride again; speaking to an audience, connecting and telling a story. My story.

I’m excited to be sharing this with you, because it’s going to help hold me accountable. You have done that, I think; share your “resolutions” with someone in the hopes that someone else will come and grab that garlic bread/dark chocolate/glass of cider/wine/beer out of your hands just before you get it to your mouth.

I promised Suzanne I would do my homework this time; who do I want to be in 2020? I need figure out where to speak this year, what conferences I should attend, who would really benefit from learning about accessibility and where I want to try and make change.

Julie’s draft one-page speaker profile. “Accessibility is within reach”

I asked Ella to do this for me, but she instead wants me to use (“shouldn’t you know how to do it? so you can do it yourself?). Now we can share our work. This is just the top half of a draft of my “one page”; it’s bigger than a business card and smaller than a resume, a happy middle. I hope to find a happy middle. Don’t we all?

I wanted to put this photo on my “speaker intro page” because I think is explains the connection I will make with you when you are in my audience. That you have something to look forward to.

I’m putting myself out there. I am an expert. I know. And people who listen will learn that they can make change too.

Thanks for reading.

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