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What is a Disability Benefits Planner?

This is about what a Disability Benefits Planner is. We at Unpacking Disability are NOT disability benefits planners. We are only taking information that we know from personal experience or research and pulling it together for you. To subscribe to only the Social Security, ABLE, Medicaid and other benefits-related posts, click here If you want [...]
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How to Grow Your Disability Pride

This is a personal essay on the concepts of disability pride, "passing," and leaning into disability. If you want to hear me reading this, just click the link below. https://media.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/p/content.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/How-to-Grow-Your-Disability-Pride.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download Mainstream culture has this tendency to think that everyone wants to be like them, and maybe to a certain [...]
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Love and Disability in the Movies: Disabled Love Movies for You to Watch!

This post is about love and disability in the movies - that is, love stories with disability intersections. Love and Disability in the Movies Hollywood loves disability (just not disabled actors). It also loves love. There are a lot of movies that have intersections of both love and disability; it's just super rare to have [...]
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New WordPress Focuses on Accessibility

This is about recent Wordpress updates, with Version 5.6.1 focusing on accessibility. You can imagine my surprise when I sat down to work on a blog post, went to my Wordpress dashboard and there were updates. Well, that it needed updates was not the part that surprised me (it always needs updating!), it was that, [...]
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How Do I Get SSI For My Child with a Disability

This is a question-and-answer post about getting SSI for a child with a disability. It's meant to break it down to make it easier to understand the how, why and wherefore's of this. This post includes useful links to SSA (Social Security Administration) to give you more thorough information. We at Unpacking Disability are NOT [...]
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Spotlight On: Crip Camp Curriculum

This is about "Crip Camp Curriculum" which has sprung from the award-winning documentary, "Crip Camp." If you would like to hear this read, please click the link below. https://media.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/p/content.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/Crip-Camp-Curriculum-.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download The documentary Crip Camp came and bust open a million doors on what it means to be disabled, on the [...]
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Do People With Down Syndrome Feel Pain Differently?

This addresses the question, "do people with Down syndrome feel pain differently?" and relates to pain tolerance of people with intellectual disability. If you want to hear this read, just click the link below. https://media.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/p/content.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/Pain-and-Down-Syndrome.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download When my daughter Moxie was about two years old, she wandered over to where [...]
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Learning to Run

This is a personal post. It's available in distraction-free (- no ads) PDF for my patrons, linked here. It's also at the end of this post for people who benefit from access to PDF'. If you want to hear me reading this, just click the link below. https://media.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/p/content.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/Learning-to-Run.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download I learned how [...]
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And I Cried Too

This is a personal post about the inauguration. If you want to hear it being read, click below. https://media.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/p/content.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/And-I-Cried-Too.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download Like millions of you, I started crying at the Inauguration ceremony of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. I started crying when Fire Captain Hall started to sign the Pledge of [...]
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It Happened to Me: Reporting Income With SSDI!

This is about John's experience with SSDI, from becoming disabled, applying for and receiving SSDI to going back to work and not reporting income with SSDI. If you want to hear this read, just click the link below. https://media.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/p/content.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/John_s-Story.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download I’ll start with some transparency: my experience with Social Security [...]
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Navigating Beyond The Four F’s of Disability Employment

This is about the "Four F's" of disability employment, particularly with employment of people with intellectual disabilities, and my own fears about my daughter's future. If you want to hear me reading this, just click the link below. https://media.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/p/content.blubrry.com/meriahnicholsdisability/The-Four-F_s.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download I woke up the other night at 2 in the [...]
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The Difference Between SSI and SSDI

This is about the difference between SSI and SSDI. Disclaimer: we are not benefits planners here at Unpacking Disability. This is simply information gleaned from personal experience and research. You need and want to do your own research with the Red Book (- link in post), and consult with your own disability benefits planner if [...]
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Disability Awareness Calendar 2021

This is a Disability Awareness Calendar 2021, which includes Disability Awareness Months and Disability Awareness Days. It also has some bonus (- non-disability-related) awareness months and days! There is a downloadable pdf included. Disability Awareness Months There are a lot of disability awareness months and disability awareness days throughout the year. It can get a [...]
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The Gift of Harry Styles and Gen Z Neuro-Flexibility

This is an opinion post about the joy of Harry Styles, and the neuro-flexibility that the gen z generation seem to have. This post was originally written as "millennial" but then I realized that I was actually talking about Generation Z, not millennials! I fell in love with Harry Styles when I watched his video [...]
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A Movie Like Run: Riveting, Representing and Rupturing

This is a review of the movie, Run, starring Sarah Paulson and Kiera Allan, which is currently playing on Hulu. Spoilers are in this review! WHOAH! Run: A Movie with Some Pop Run is the first move in a long time to star an actual wheelchair user in a lead role, and that's pretty exciting [...]
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How to Enable Free Zoom Captions with Any Zoom Account

This is a tutorial for how to set up free captions on Zoom - any account on Zoom, including your personal free account. Update: enabling this has been difficult/not possible for some people. I am not sure why, and Zoom itself is not forthcoming about why some people can enable this and others can't. I [...]
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Tips for Universal Design in Academic Conferences

This is about universal design in academic conferences. It contains specific suggestions for how to improve universal access, that while specifically geared towards academic conferences, is applicable to all meetings This essay is available in distraction-free (- no ads) at the end of this post for people who benefit from access to PDF's. Disability and Universal [...]
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100+ Disability Groups on Facebook That You’ve Been Looking For

This is about the best disability groups on Facebook. Disability Community on Facebook Disability community is crucial and is a powerful way for those of us with disabilities to make friendships from within our own respective disability communities and cross-disability. It's a way to find solutions to problems that are disability-specific, receive support and a [...]
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