Monthly Archives: December 2018

Good Bye 2018

As 2018 slips through the fingers of time, I thought I should write something profound, but being me, I can’t so I’m just going to go through the highlights of the year.

This year as given me lots of hospital visits, I have a frequent flyer card for all the trips there. I’ve had surgeries and I’ve had lots of tests. I have had a change in some of my medications. The best was that, finally I have a tablet that stops the vague outs and black outs. It is so wonderful to be driving again and being able to go out to the shops or anywhere, without having to have a responsible adult at my side.

I’ve faced the usual amount of racism. It’s a shame that I just expect to face racist people on a regular basis. But that is the reality of life in australia as an Aboriginal person.

I’ve also seen my fair share of racism, towards other peoples. That is on the increase, the comments, looks or ugly faces towards people of Asian, African or Pasifika peoples. Australia was never a white country, so why would you want it to be so? Why would you want to have lots of inbreeding of white people to remain pure (whatever that means).

But enough of that, back to me…

The last major incident I witnessed was a couple of weeks ago at the Princess Alexandra Hospital, an older Aboriginal woman was talking, to a nurse and some horrid white people were laughing at the way she spoke, this emboldened the nurse to snicker too at this woman. This woman deserves at the minimum the respect due to all people. But as usual, this is not for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in australia. I intervened and helped this woman.

I tweeted this incident and lots of people felt outrage. Well outrage isn’t enough if there is no action with it. The hospital tweeted back to me, telling me to contact Tanya or Gary who are the Indigenous liaison officers at the place. That is not good enough. Racism is not a black problem, it’s a white problem. The hospital needs to step in and ensure cultural awareness training is done to all staff.

Don’t lay at the feet of the Indigenous workers, the problems of the white staff. Be responsible enough to admit there is a problem and start to work on it.

That goes for all hospitals and medical centers do some work on your white staff, train them to be more culturally aware. It is up to you, not to expect us to face the hatred and then help you overcome it.

Next year, I am hoping that some changes have been made to the general public about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, learn about the true history of this country. Stop judging us by an unfair standards, that white people wouldn’t be able to meet.

Do They Know It’s Christmas time At All?

As most of us done our festive wear and deck the halls with boughs of holly, many of us are faced with the Centrelink Grinch coming around and taking our payments away.  I found myself in this unenviable position, when Centrelink decided to cut my payments, while it decides if I can and should be at work.

I have no problem with working, I would love to be able to work full-time or part-time, it would mean more money and give me a reason to dress up a bit and go into the wide world. But I have a problem with immunity and then there is the pesky issue of the passing out and seizures caused by the brain tumor. I have had to resign myself to living off the small amount of the Disability Allowance. It barely covers my rent, then if you add in the electricity and groceries, I’m in trouble. But on top of that, I have to pay for my medical bills. It just isn’t enough and I’m a master at “Robbing Peter to pay Paul”. I shuffle around money like it’s a deck of card, just to keep my head afloat.

When Centrelink screws with my payments, well then I’m lost. That is what they have done to me at the moment. This leaves me in the position of being behind in my rent, with the landlord wanting to evict me. How did it get this far? I was cut off about 6 weeks ago and have been slowly going through the process of seeing Centrelink social workers and soon to visit a doctor of their choice. This has come about with Centrelink ignoring my letters from the GP and specialists. Oh well, I guess what would they know about my health?

I’m not the only one to suffer from this stupidity, we see it so often in the papers or on the news that some poor soul has been cut off from Centrelink, who will justify that a seriously disabled person should be able to work. How do they come to these conclusions? If they have doctors who agree with this, then those doctors should lose their licence.

It’s so easy to forget that people, especially women are one small step away from homelessness, due to bureaucracy. This time of year is the worst for homeless people as their numbers swell from those who have been laid off around Christmas time, break down of marriage, or young people thinking they can move out of home and make it on their own.

So many women and children are homeless, I can’t help but wonder if I will be another one, If my daughter and I will be spending Christmas in my little car?

I have always done what Centrelink have asked me to do. Yet they have some idea that I might be holding out on them and able to work?  How do they do this to people? Who is sitting in the hidden bunker, plucking out names and deciding who should have to go through this process? This time of year, you can bet that I won’t be able to see the doctor until next year. So I have to wait, and keep my fingers crossed and hope for a Christmas miracle.

It’s so terrifying to think that I might in my 50’s face homelessness. I don’t know if I can cope with that. How do I keep my medications straight? How do I give myself pain relief while not in a home? What happens if I am having a bad day and can’t walk or see properly? Where do I go? I know the local council where I live have a kind of tent city for the homeless, but during the day, you can’t stay there, so where do I go, when I am too ill?

We often take what we have for granted, but this year, I beg of you to please help those in need. Smile and give a helping hand, for you might be helping me.

Thank you