July 19th was scheduled to be the biggest day of my career as a public speaker. Speaking in Parliament wasn’t only going to be a massive challenge, but something that I also felt was a huge opportunity for the disability sector. It’s not often that disability and politics get in the same room together, and it’s even more rare that a person living with a disability gets to speak about the issues that matter to them.
As I announced yesterday on Facebook, this opportunity has fallen by the wayside. While I understand that in politics things can change very quickly, and that nothing is ever 100% set in stone, I do feel very frustrated at the late notice and the way in which this was handled.
You don’t approach a public speaker and ask if they’d like to speak at an event and then do a U-turn a week out. It’s unprofessional, and it’s done nothing but make me look bad and deeply embarrassed.
With all that said – there is nothing I can do. The decision has been made, and I am thankful that my career keeps me busy enough that I won’t have time to sit around and think about this for too long.
I want to jump to a bigger point with this blog today, and I want to start by responding to some of the critics who have been laughing and joking about this. I woke up to a text message today that labelled me a bully, and implied that I deserved the unfortunate events that occurred yesterday. Other, very vocal critics, who never have anything positive to say took great pleasure in hitting the “thumbs up” button on the Facebook status. This is their way of justifying to themselves that they are right about me, but they are also too immature to realize that you will always have setbacks and disappointments in life. Laughing at someone else’s disappointment is nothing short of pure immaturity.
This is one of the messages I received from one of the more vocal critics.
Spoke to some people 🙂 Maybe you should not have been a bully Mike. It’s not on 🙂 hope you’ll learn this soon enough.
Critics can have their laughs, and responding to them in this blog is my subtle way of laughing along with them.
I am still travelling to Wellington next week and I intend on visiting Parliament. Instead of a working trip to New Zealand’s capital, this will be a holiday, and one that I know I very much deserve. This Friday, I will be speaking at the Hamilton Gardens at an event promoting the power of positive thinking, and this is just what I need right now. Nearly 100 people are due to be in attendance, and I look forward to sharing my story with each and everyone of you.
I want to end by being very honest and up front.
The truth is, right now… I do feel very disappointed, very frustrated, and more than a little deflated. But as I said at the beginning of this blog, I don’t have too much time to sit around and think about it for much longer. There is another challenge sitting just two days away, and that’s where my focus needs to be.