Thrown From the Holiday Train by Arwen Bird


A wonderful testimony to the power of compassion-infused imagination on the part of a single member of the Disability Community - Oregonian Arwen Bird - as she reflects on the core value of our community -- interdependence.

Also available on Tour watch:

Here is a description of the project by author Arwen Bird:

Hello Friends,

Last Winter holiday I boarded an excursion train with my family and was forced off because the organizers wouldn't take "wheelchairs." Instead of pursuing legal or traditional advocacy strategies to redress the harms of that day--which are often so adversarial that the people responsible for harm turn off their sense of compassion for the people they have hurt--I wanted to spend energy in ways that are intended to be healing for me, and for everyone who witnesses this story. After much thought I chose to write and produce a digital story. The story, Thrown From the Holiday Train, is FINALLY ready to be shared with all of you!

I invite you to:
        1. Watch this short story (it's about 5 minutes long)
        2. Share it far and wide with everyone you know
        3. Let me know if you feel more connected to your Will to help people with disabilities be with the ones they love

Through sharing my story, I hope to help people watching connect with their WILL to help people with disabilities be with their families. I believe that if we stay connected to this sense of will, that the logistics of building ramps, lifts, etc. flow easily from this deeper desire to help people be with the ones they love. It's amazing what can happen when our will and sense of compassion are engaged.

For my next project, I am considering focusing on how the incident affected my nephew and our relationship.  After witnessing the event, my nephew (who was three at the time) began to experiment with discriminating and separating me from my family because of my use of a wheelchair, reflecting what the adults around him were modeling. Although being 'thrown' from the train was emotionally painful for me, it was seeing the ways it had affected him that inspired me to act. After you watch this one, please let me know if the next chapter a story you want to hear and watch!

Thanks for reading and sharing.

Love, Arwen

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