Monday, May 3, 2010

Disabled or Enabled?

Since my little leg accident, I have gotten just a small, small feel of what it is like to experience life, as what some people call "disabled". But my "disabled" experience is only temporary, I will, most likely, return to normal...and not walk with crutches or have to sit in a wheel chair.

The amazing thing is that, since I have been going through things, this way, it makes me appreciate my health even more! I have struggled getting into the shower (which takes me an hour), searched for "handicapped" ramps, struggled getting around, sat wanting to cry from the pain...and this has just been since exactly 2 weeks ago.

I admire and can't believe all the "enabled" people that live like this everyday. They are warriors, that don't let anything stop them, they have incredible determination, unstoppable strength, and hearts that beat with passion and pure "enabling" power!

It is easy to feel bad about our situations, but when you live with determination that nothing will stop you! No matter what the world says is possible or not, our hearts know no limitations!

Sometimes more people have disabled thoughts, because of the handicaps they've put on themselves, than "enabled" people that have "disabled" bodies. What it comes down to is your matter people try to say to you to limit your dreams, nothing can stop you, there is always a way to make it happen.

My friend, Ian Ruhter, has an amazing art project called "Enabled", which had it's debut show last year. Here is the video of me at the Enabled show last year...please, I hope you are inspired by these amazing pictures of people that society labels "disabled", but these people are some of the most "enabled" people I've ever seen! There stories will encourage you when you feel like giving up!

enjoy and be inspired...huge love, kandee



Liesl said...

What a lovely post, Kandee, and so true indeed!

Loved reading your perspective and think it can really open up the eyes of others out there! You are in inspiration and your positivity and energy are wonderful!

Hoping you are on the up and up and thank you for introducing your friend Ian Ruhter's "Enabled" project!

Liesl ;)

April said...

what an awesome video!

Unknown said...

Sometimes we give up but we don't realize that those time are when we have to do our best and push harder!

Thank you Kandee
Heal soon

Angel Ramirez

Unknown said...

Kandee you are sooo awesome. Just wanted to say keep it up and never change! ;) Your really a great role model!

Unknown said...

omg Kandee you're amazing
Ian is amazing as well for uncovering these atheletes' accomplishments

Michael said...

I feel 'disabled' because I have been having panic attacks for the past 2 years and it limits what I can and cannot do. I cannot go outside often (unless it's just to my back yard). I cannot do a LOT of things that I used to do. I am trying to get better though because living life like this sucks and it's not worth it.

Nikki Helms said...

Kandee, This is so beautiful. Thank you so much for showing us this, its so uplifting!

Noelle Marie said...

my dad is handicapped and I thought this was AMAZING

hannah said...

This is such an incredible project! I'm SO glad it's getting the recognition it deserves.
Thanks for the inspiration boost!


Cassandra said...

I'm working on my Masters in Rehabilitative Counseling, and I'll be working with people with disabilities. I think it is amazing that you are showing others that just because somebody has a disability it doesn't mean that they can't do the same, or even more then any capable person. Thanks!!!

beyoutifulkaye said...

this is absolutely beautiful and inspirational.

Denikanika85 said...

this was great. my dear aunt maria was born with Spina bifida and was paralyzed from the waist down. i was very close to her and did alot together so i know how it is looking for the ramps...we got alot of looks but my aunt was the strongest,sweet,kind,caring,loving,giving,selfless people i have ever had the honor to know let alone be related to. she would have loved this post and that art show. she loved it with people showed "disabled" people as the strong folks they are. she passed away 2years ago due to renal and kidney failure, but even in death she still inspires. RIP MARIA E VALDEZ 5-15-63 to 8-30-08

KrötenKuni said...

hey kandee, thank u for this awesome post. my husband is handicapped too, but he will never be able to walk.
this experience has changed my view on many things. the view on the society, because in the first line it is to be disabled. not the people themselves. in combination with your "crying yourself to sleep" post the whole thing gets a bigger dimension. i really admire the courage of disabled people to manage their life day by day. and i really love your attitude towards such issues.
love and greetings from germany

Noelle Garnier said...

There are so many things that leave you feeling disabled, not just injuries but also personal things like losing someone... it's wonderful though how God can use those things to give you more strength than you started with. Trials have benefits that are lifelong ... I hope these things that you are learning and sharing while your injury heals will stick with you for your whole life and turn out to be a blessing!
xoxo, God bless,
kandee fam lil sis

Ioana said...

Thank you so much for this Kandee, you are such a wonderful person. Last night I think was the first time when I was truly honestly being grateful for being healthy and generally healthy.

Hope you get well soon, the pain always goes away sooner or later and I'm completely sure that your best day hasn't arrived yet.

Sending you my thoughts and love (from the UK),

Ioana xx

Anonymous said...

hey kandee
has the book been published??
would really love to get it if it has, really inspiring.

Ari said...

What a lovely post kandee ! You have an awesome out look on life :) And your friend is so talented

PeculiarRoyalty said...

what you said is definitely so true.

Richy & Richy said...

great stuff! was having one of those days but after watching this I feel inspired to end the day positively, thanks for sharing

Unknown said...

Hey Kandeeeee,
A friend of mine is in a similar situation for a couple of years now and it seems to be a permanent disease... it's very hard but she stays strong too! :) I know what you're talking about.
Your injuries are temporary but still: You are so brave and always see the good sides of things! Stay strong, you'll soon be our happy crazy Kandee again, who jumps around like nothing has happened. ;)
Keep spreading your love, energy and optimism. You are unique and brighten our days.
Huuuge love from the other side of the globe!! <3

Bianca said...

Keep up the good work!

Big kiss!


Saving Cents- The 35 Dollar Diet said...

I have to so those pictures are amazing. I was always taught growing up that people are not disabled, they are differently abled. Just because a person can't see, doesn't mean they can't write the next great American novel. Just because a person can't hear doesn't mean they can't play beautiful music. Most importantly, just because a person is "normal" in every way, doesn't mean they aren't blinded by the injustices happening all around them.

Thanks for posting such a great blog!

Meghan said...

My dad fell ill almost 4 years ago and was paralyzed from the neck down at age 53. He has been in a wheelchair since then and has slowly regained his mobility and is learning to walk all over again. What I love best about him is his positive attitude - throughout everything - even when he was so close to death - he never, not once, looked around and said, "why me". He has always had limitless faith in the Lord and without a doubt in his mind, knows he will walk again someday. I am so proud of him and other "enabled" people who don't let their "disability" get in the way of their own happiness! I hope more people choose to follow their examples and not let life's obsatacles stop them from becoming the person they want to be!

Kala said...


I thought it was funny, yesterday my dad asked, "How is Kandee doing?" You've just become like a friend to me and my family even though I've never met you or talked to you. I sent prayers your way today that God would comfort you in your recovery. I pray that you continue to be positive and send out your message of hope and happiness to all of us out here who consider you a friend and role model!

Love, Kala

FitterTwit said...

I really did not want to cry this morning, but thank you so much for sharing something so moving! :)

...Live.Love.MakeUp... said...

AMAZING photographer,
AMAZING people with
AMAZING stories.

Kandee Johnson said...

thanks to all of you guys, for being such amazing people with incredible hearts! There's a reason you are all in my "kandee family"! I love you all and your amazing comments you leave! xoxo your kandee

...Live.Love.MakeUp... said...

AMAZING Photographer
AMAZING people with
AMAZING stories

Unknown said...

Hi kendee,
I just wanted you to know you have fans all over the world that follows your post and video blogs and thinks you're awesome, Even from little tinny Israel.
I wish you a full recovery and sending you a Jewish blessing for health.

רְפָאֵנוּ ה' וְנֵרָפֵא, הוֹשִׁיעֵנוּ וְנִוָּשֵׁעָה, כִּי תְהִלָּתֵנוּ אָתָּה,
וְהַעֲלֵה רפואה שלימה לכל מַכּוֹתֵינוּ.
כִּי אֵל מלך רוֹפֵא נֶאֱמָן וְרַחֲמָן אָתָּה.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', רוֹפֵא חוֹלֵי עַמּוֹ יִשְׂרָאֵל.

Ella from Israel.

T♥ny said...

hy kandee <3.
well, i just wanted to say that i just looove you , you are so amazing. i found your videos on utube , not a long time ago , and i just fell in love whith all the things u do. i saw them all:). i think you are such a nice person, u're so funy.
hope u get well soon!
sending some love from romania:D.
(escuse my english, i'm not that good)


JuicyPrincess said...

I hope you get better soon! You are so right about people who have to be in wheelchairs and crutches are warriors....

You are an amazing person and in my Prayers! :)

Love, Ashlee Preslee!

sugarbumpkin said...

You're so amazingly strong. It'll be over soon <3

Sara Kalima said...

Hey Kandee, I've been reading your blog for a long time, and I really love what you do, professionally and then helping people through your blog etc.. I recently started working at this chinese restaurant and there's this corridor on the way to the smoking area, and on the walls there's a few quotations painted on, and they just reminded me of you so much..!

"To forgive is to set a prisoner free, and to discover that the prisoner was you"


"The heart is like a garden; it can grow compassion, fear, resentment or love. What seeds will you plant?"

When I saw them i just had to tell you that your way of seeing the world really is reaching people and thank you so much :)

love and hugs xxx

Anonymous said...

the enabled exhibit is really inspiring, Im also gunna get a tiny taste of how it is to not be able to use my hand since i just got stitches there from an accident i had while cutting today. Im glad i read this post, take care and heal soon
-stitched :)

Kendra said...


Thank you for your wonderful words of encouragement for all of us affected by a disability! I cried when I read the Enabled link…my husband needed something like this to encourage him today! My husband is recently disabled due to a 2nd brain surgery accident that caused a stroke. The stroke left my husband with left sided weakness. He is an althlete and this was devastating to him. But he and I have learned so much through this journey together having had to live in a rehabilitation center for months and relearning how to walk and talk, etc... You really learn about a world that is amazing.! It opens up your heart and makes it bigger and it stretches your understanding. I have found that I am a different person after all of this with so much more empathy for others who are enabled;) You are an amazing light Kandee…keep on shinning 8o)

Diane said...

That is a great project! I know about it from you from last year :)

Hope you get better soon!!


sandra said...

well...i think i am one of this people...grins
but i feel sorry for people who are so much more disabled by choice

by the way
thank you oregon to be so nice too me..even when i am in your way...grins !
i love being here

Beth said...

Thanks for your post my best friend last year broke both her legs and was in a wheelchair for months & she hated it. Reading you post helped me understand what she went through even more. thank you! :)xx

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