Adventure: Orcas Isalnd

Meg was lucky enough to score another assisting gig up in the San Juan Islands, and this time there was enough time and space for me and Tuck to tag along (thanks to Catherine and Michael Abegg for giving us the room to stay in!). The weekend was absolutely amazing, even though I managed to sprain my foot just mere hours before our ferry home. Hey, at least it was after all the fun stuff, right?

Wheels and Red getting on Anacortes ferry to san juans. Multiple Sclerosis

Anacortes WA, Ferry Terminal

Wheels and red driving around orcas Island WA

driving to rosario resort on orcas island WA

The roads though the island felt so magical.

Wheels and red disabled adventure at rosario resort Orcas island WA

The first night at the resort did not disappoint. Meg had to work the next day so we spent the evening checking out Rosario.

Disabled adventurers on orcas island wheels and red

 

Brown Bear Baking making delicious treats for wheels and red.

The line out the door of Brown Bear Baking says it all. They make straight magic back there.

Wheels and red at the eastsound farmers market

Lunch wasn’t far behind. Wood fired pizza, no contest.

Rosario resort marina Orcas Island WA

While Meg worked, Tucker and I spent the day checking out the resort. This was the spot to watch the sea-planes come in.

Artsy peep hole shot? Why not.

On Sunday we had the entire day to explore the island. We started with Moran State Park.

I love that these guys are down for whatever. Great co-pilots!

The old fire watch tower at the top of Mount Constitution. The best part of it is you can drive all the way to the top. A big plus for the mobility impaired like myself.

Bullet hole from the historic San Juan Island gang wars. Kidding.

wheels and red at Doe bay Orcas Island washington

When you’re in the San Juan Islands you can feel how special of a place it is. I know we are all excited to get back up there for even more adventuring. But for now, I’ll admit I missed the comfort of my own bed.

@prouska disabled with Multiple sclerosis on dock PNW

Afternoon at Sandy Beach

When the tide is out at Illahee State Park you can head south down the beach and find a hidden gem called Sandy Beach. Sandy Like the name says it’s sandy, very sandy. Stuff like this being 5 minutes from our house is exactly why I love the PNW.

@prouska disabled with Multiple sclerosis on dock PNWThis was the spot to jump off the pier back in the day. I could’ve sworn it was a 40′ drop…

 

At 7 years old Tucker is all about climbing trees. This place has a bunch of rad fallen trees to climb.
Washington ferry passing illahee state parkPerfect spot to watch the Ferry chug by.

Wheels & Red sitting on beach

This was a perfect way to spend the evening. The wind was whipping the warm air off the water.

meg_sandyB 

The trip was awesome even though I had Tucker jump from one log to another and he slipped and got some barnacle bun on his shin. You don’t have to travel far to find adventure, it’s in your back yard.

-wheels

 

Wheels and red breakfast in the van

Our friend Sammy


We had our friend Sammy stay with us for just over a week. Sammy is an amazing dude living the #vanlife. While he was here he jumped at every opportunity to help out, the guy even mowed my yard with a broken foot. He stays in his ’78 Econoline Camper with Silas the cat, traveling around creating and helping people. He is an all around badass.

We all learned from Sammy while he was here. Tucker even scored his first big kid skateboard. Having rad creative people coming through the house is what makes unschooling so special.

Family sitting around fire in the PNW

Sammy gave Tucker his phone and told him to get a pic from up in the apple tree. Instant cool points.

PNW fire pit multiple sclerosis

Sammy was kind enough to make us breakfast in the van one morning. Check out Meg’s 5 minute project to see our breakfast adventure.

5 minutes at 11 o’clock // April

Wheels and red breakfast in the van

Having a solid base of friends and family has made all the difference. We all have struggles but we don’t have to face them alone.

Wheels and Red with friends

-wheels

Trek to Cali

Since starting this project I have reached out to a lot of cool people. Some of the first were the awesome people at the National MS Society. The timing was perfect, they were planning on shooting a video to help people who are newly diagnosed with MS navigate the craziness.

A week after telling them my story they asked me and the family to fly down to Los Angeles and tell our story to the camera. It was a short trip but we had a ton of fun. Hopefully this isn’t the last project we do with the NMSS.

venice BeachWe arrived on a beautiful 82 degree day. We unloaded our bags at the hotel and headed out to Venice Beach.
Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with b2 presetWe stopped at the Venice Beach Skatepark to watch the dudes shred and pick up chicks, both were great to watch.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 presetBefore we flew out we headed up to Santa Monica to check out the pier.
Processed with VSCOcam with f1 presetWell hello PNW it’s nice to see you again!

Big thanks to all the awesome people who made this trip happen. We can’t wait to see you all again soon.

 

-wheels

I Like Canes

I have shown you one of my canes already but I have another favorite. Yup, I have multiple assistive devices. You don’t wear the same shirt everyday, why would I rock the same cane.

I am lucky to have such a talented wife to photograph this journey we are on. I asked her to take some photos of me with my new Sabi Classic cane, of course she said yes, she’s cool like that. We headed down the street to a small park just above the marina to goof around.

I really like the look of my new cane, plus the feel of it makes it an all around badass walking stick. The hook handle feels really natural in my hand, and it’s super useful for grabbing things. I have enjoyed trying to find other uses for the cool handle.

The rubber used in the tip is really bouncy and super grippy. This thing also has almost no weight to it, it almost glides in the hand while you’re walking.


Let me just show you how cool this thing is.

Young man standing with black sabi classic cane looking over water man walking with black sabi classic cane

sabi classic wood handle

IMG_0851 IMG_0852 IMG_0853 IMG_0854 IMG_0856IMG_0880

IMG_0894

My friend Liz also rocks a Sabi cane — check out her blog at The Girl With The Purple Cane.

Have a look at all the Sabi products at Sabi.com

Big thanks to my rad wife for taking these photos, Meghann Prouse Indie Photographer.

-wheels

What are you waiting for?

You may have picked up on this, but I have Multiple Sclerosis. If I were standing there without my cane you may never know. When I do have my cane people think “this dude probably hurt his leg skating or snowboarding!”. I wish that was the case.

MS is all about the lesions. A lot of people with MS only get a lesion or two and progress very slowly. I am not that lucky. I continue to get new lesions year after year. My first set of MRIs found 10+ lesions on the spinal cord and a few scattered through my brain. That was just the beginning.

0001 0002

I have a hard time when things feel like they are somewhat stable for a few months, yet in reality the lesions continue to progress. Currently my brain and spinal cord are active. These lesions effect things like cognition, spacial awareness, sensory nerves and muscle strength. It is tough to see the cognitive changes when you rely on the brain to tell you whats wrong.

The numbness is the worst on the left side, but the right is no picnic. It’s really is weird not being able to tell if your arm has made it into the shirt you are putting on.

I continue to take my injections to hopefully slow to progression but there is no way to know how well it is doing that, if at all. As I transition from Relapsing Remitting MS into Secondary Progressive MS, things slowly slip away. I wonder how much is left.

Nobody is guaranteed tomorrow. What are you waiting for?

 

What makes you happy?

What is your dream?

What are you waiting for?

 

 

 

Canes for a Cure || Top & Derby

logo_TD_smll

Top & Derby_MS Orange twitter

Canes for a cure

I have been using the same $15 cane I bought 4 years ago when my MS first started slowing me down. I wanted to make it fit my style so I plastered it with stickers. The grip is completely gone and the tip has no traction. As terrible as this cane is, it has helped me a lot over the years but now it’s time for an upgrade.

The search for a new cane is frustrating. Everything seems to be designed solely for function. I thought it was weird there’s not much out there designed for a 30 year old dude with tattoos and piercings. The search led me to a group of rad dudes who built the Chatfield cane. Reading through the features it was clear this was the cane I was looking for. The shaft is solid Walnut and the tip, or “shoe” as they call it, is inspired by a skate shoe. Yup, you read that right, skate shoe inspired. I think I found my Excaliber.

The grip on my old, cheaply assembled Walmart cane completely peeled off years ago, leaving an uncomfortable plastic handle. Getting around with a wobbly, unstable cane is a task in itself. The Chatfield from Top and Derby blows the shoddy aluminum tube of a cane out of the water. The handle on the Chatfield just feels right. The girth (heh, girth) of the handle fits my hand perfectly. And I don’t talk about girth in my hand very often. The grip and stability of the shoe inspired tip has been noticeably helpful.

Top and Derby have integrity. They care about the people that they are helping, they are hip and stylish, and they’re using their platform to spread awareness about things that really matter. Their Enable Initiative proves their dedication; with March being MS awareness month they created 200 limited edition Chatfield canes decked out with Pantone (158) orange handles and shoes and custom laser engraving. For every one of the 200 made, they are donating the proceeds directly to the MS Societies of Canada and the US. I’m honored they sent me one of these beauties.

In my teens I spent my time skating and riding BMX through skate parks just like this one. I’m the same rad dude; just because I can’t shred the half-pipe doesn’t mean I’m not shredding gnar through life. And after 4 years with a $15 cane I realize that it’s more than an assistive device; it’s the face of my MS. The Chatfield is a cane I’m proud to have people stare at. Go ahead, ask me about my cane.

This ain’t your grandfather’s cane.

IMG_1208td1IMG_1218
IMG_1219 IMG_1221IMG_1223IMG_1233
IMG_1239
IMG_1258

IMG_1279td2IMG_1285

IMG_1310 IMG_1320

IMG_1312 IMG_1324

You can purchase the Cane for a Cure at TopandDerby.com

All of these rad photos were taken by Meghann Prouse Indie Photographer.

I love you Red

We don’t celebrate much of anything in a traditional fashion. Valentines Day is no different.   I guess we’re cool like that?

It’s the day before Valentines Day and I didn’t buy my wife a thing, no card, no chocolate and no flowers. It’s all about what you do the rest of the 364 days.

 

To My Best Friend:

I just want to say I Love You to my best friend. You have always been there for me. When things got hard you stepped up, when they got harder, you kicked its ass. No matter what MS has thrown at us you have been my rock.

I knew early on that I loved you. How early? In the first week of knowing you I looked over at you and said “You know how I know I love you?” . As embarrassing as it was, I knew it was true. We jump into everything head first together. When you know, you know.

I couldn’t wait to marry you. I had to make sure you couldn’t back out of the wedding, so, I knocked you up. Still one of the best decisions I have ever made. I always knew everything would be ok.

Thank you for helping me raise the raddest, smartest, weirdo out of the box kid we could.

How crazy is it the 8 years have gone by? I am excited for 8 more, but only 8 more after that I’m probably good.  (I also I love that you get my humor)

I can’t wait for all the adventure to come.

You are my favorite!

I Love You Red!

Wheels and Red nerdy selfie

-wheels