Hello everyone it’s Betty; you here may know me better as Lady Elizabeth. I’m a disabled kitten and that is what I wanted to speak about today. It has been quite sometime since I have been out and about in our community. I wanted to take a moment to talk about my experience with the chateau as a disabled kitten over these past years; almost 6 now. A little background on me. I became a member of The Chateau in November 2014. I was #22. (I’m very proud of my number) Goodness has a lot changed since then. I have had many many diagnosis which seems to be how I measure time now. Over 30 hospital visits, hundreds of doctors appointments, and countless diagnosis. Time had flown by.
Disabled isn’t a title I have identified with my whole life. I have no stigma against my limitations or disability anymore. It’s not a bad word. It perfectly reflects the fact that I’m not 100% able bodied anymore and that I occasionally need assistance.
With my time here I have always been amazed with the inclusivity and kindness shown to me. When I became a member I was young and free. I had just met my boyfriend (now husband) and I had just began having problems with my health. Thought I have always been sickly it didn’t effect my lifestyle the way it does now. It started with trouble swallowing and vertigo at 14, then headaches and heat intolerance when I was 20. I didn’t let this effect my social life back then I still went to all the chateau events I could go to, both in and out of state.
Unfortunately It quickly escalated to fainting multiple times a day, being bed ridden and hooked up to an IV more often then not. I slowly scaled back going only to a few events a year. Till it became none at all. On the rare occasion when I did show up to events and parties though no one made comments of the medical devices I had to wear or the monitors I was hooked up to. I made people around me aware of what to do if something happened. People asked the occasional questions which I was happy to answer. The group made sure I was comfortable and included. No one made a big deal of the fact that I could no longer drink, dance, of be tied up and hung from the rafters. I was amazed at the inclusion I received. It was to no lack of support that I went underground. I just became to ill to leave my home; too ill to participate in most things. Including my own life sometimes.
Except for the occasional outing with my husband or bump into Isibella I went from a member of Chateau high society to a lonely bed ridden patient. The hardest part is not lack of support in our community. Of all the groups I am apart of the Chateau had stayed a constant. I found when I became ill that most people are fair weather friends and they not so slowly disappeared, but the Chateau was always right there if I wanted to reach out. One of my dreams was to manage events. Though I only got to help with a couple of Chateau events because of my illness I’m very thankful to Isibella for the opportunities presented in helping with the events of earlier years. From preforming shibari, kitten monitor, to time keeper, I have had my time in the sun.
As I slowly make my way back into this group of amazing and supportive women the hardest part is not my disability or my limitations because there are few limitations with the support I have received. The most difficult is becoming a member of the community again. Learning to be comfortable with myself, my disability, becoming comfortable around people again, and finding different ways to be involved in the group then just social gatherings and modeling. Possibly behind the scenes work or event management assistance were I so lucky to once again be a pillar of chateau society, but at the very least once again a chateau kitten of high court.
I hope this article helps show anyone with a disability thinking to join us or someone already apart of our community hiding a disability that doesn’t believe they or their disability can be apart of our world because of their limitations YOU CAN! We are not just models basking in the glory of beautiful things, youth, and bubbling champagne. We are an international group of women with similar interests lifting one another up not only online but in the real world. With this being said I know that I have a lot of new kittens to meet now that I’ve emerged from my solitude and self isolation. I’m excited to re-engage with my fellow kitten and vampires once again.
Illness has shown me while beauty and health may not last forever kindness shown to others will.