2016 Ms. Wheelchair Washington

2016 Ms. Wheelchair Washington
Nicole Martini

Seattle Adaptive Sports!!!

When I went to Seattle Mother's Day weekend my first stop right off the train was with Seattle Adaptive Sports playing basketball with everyone. Thank you so much for all your help Tami for all your help and inviting me to play it was/is very much appreciated!! It was great hanging out, meeting new people, talking to them and getting to know some of them. I haven't played basketball in a very long time but it was so much fun!! I really hope to visit Seattle Adaptive Sports again soon. I had been very curious about this group and Tacoma, that I am aware of there really are not a lot of options for groups geared towards adaptive sports where I live, I have looked around locally.
Thank you for making my day a Great one EVERYONE!!! You all are really great people. :)

The "Joys" of Being In A Wheelchair and Performing Onstage

Currently I am in a variety show/cabaret show. For those who probably don't know I was a theatre actor for about 15 years before deciding to take another path in acting. I ventured into Voice-Over. The rejection and narrow-mindedness got to a point where I couldn't get ANY roles, but instead got a whole  mess of excuses from directors. I'm sorry, but you don't want to cast me because you don't have a ramp is an Extremely lame and FALSE excuse to NOT cast a person in a wheelchair. It's very simple to make a ramp.To be completely honest with you it would be so much better if you were blunt and upfront whether it is because of the chair or not, but please do NOT lie to us to "not hurt our feelings". Personally I can see past the BS and it hurts my feelings to be lied to. I am sure a lot of other people can see past all the excuses as well.
Anyway, to get back to the current show I am in which only has a total of 4 performances, (1 down 3 to go). I truly appreciate that everyone is willing to make the theatre backstage area work which is not wheelchair accessible, which means being carried up and down steps to get to and from the stage. I do not like it at all, but hey, I'm not going to quit if they are willing to make it work as a team. The problem I do have is that it is really getting on my nerves that some of the backstage crew is taking it upon themselves to practically push me on stage at inappropriate times (when I am not supposed to to be onstage). If I am trying to physically stop you from wheeling me onto stage please respect that and don't do it. I do know when I am supposed to be up there or waiting in the wings. If you are not dancing with me on stage or lifting me up/down steps please hands off my chair. To tell you the truth it's just makes those people who think I should be up there or in the front for everyone to see look bad. Don't get me wrong I do appreciate they are trying to help but PLEASE ASK before doing something like this, I do take performing seriously even if it is on a community level. Acting is something I have done at a semi-professional level and I do take it serious.
This is my current complaint, but all in all I am having a Great time with great folks and would LOVE to continue performing!!! Not going to let stupid stuff discourage me from my passions in life.


This past weekend I went to the Seattle area to attend The Ravishing Women Show with Ms. Wheelchair America Jennifer Adams!! WOW!! The Ravishing Women show was SO Beautiful!!! There were so many Fantastic people, food, vendors selling things like jewelry and clothing and more, plus a couple of people doing Henna which I unfortunately did not get the chance to have done. EVERY TIME I got to a place where there is Henna I have to get it done because I love it so much. Henna is definitely an art form being so intricate and detailed in the designs. I’ve always been quite fascinated with different cultures from around the world so this even was extremely exciting for. The people I met at the Ravishing Women Show we so very kind, generous, helpful and just all around lovely, lovely people. All the women participating in the Miss/Mrs. India Washington Pageant looked so breathtakingly gorgeous in their traditional clothing and makeup. The talent portion of the pageant was a lot of fun to watch even though I only saw a very small portion of it because I was helping Jenny at her table. The dancers were incredible; the singers were beautiful and unique, Jenny even performed a dance to a song called “Walk On Water” which everyone loved!! Unfortunately I did not get to see
her dance but I am sure there will be many more opportunities to see her dance.

The hotel I stayed at was the Silver Cloud Hotel in Redmond, WA and I have to say they were truly a fantastic group of people who work there!!! My room was very spacious and completely wheelchair accessible, I Highly recommend this hotel to anyone and everyone in a wheelchair. Their laundry facilities at the hotel I did need a little help with because they had font loader dryers but top loader washers, however the staff were more than happy to help. The complimentary breakfast was the same situation as far as needing help.

Back to the Ravishing Women Show, Jenny and I met a lot of really amazing people including Mrs. Tacoma and Mrs. Washington!! Both Jenny and I were honored on stage at different times during the show with a Ravishing Women trophy!! I also got to crown the new Miss. India Washington, Angela Goraphy, which was quite an honor to say the least. I know Angela will be fantastic and I wish her the best of luck with everything!! I will most definitely come to this show in the future even if I don’t do anything but buy, eat and watch the show and I think you should too!! 

Oh my goodness!! I forgot to mention that I also was asked to help out with applying makeup to some of the ladies!!! Lots and lots of fun on Sunday despite getting their a little late. Even though I was a little late to arrive I did have Very good luck with getting wheelchair accessible cabs in a timely manner. Meaning I did Not have to wait even an hour or more for a cab!!!


My View On Disability

 I want to address my view on “disability”. People ask me why I use air quotes when talking about “disability” or when writing the word. The reason behind this is that I personally I do not see myself as a “disabled” woman at all, Not because I am embarrassed or ashamed that I am in a wheelchair and can not walk, this could not be further from the truth. It is because when I think of "disabled" to me it means someone who thinks they can not do for themselves. Fact of the matter is that if we put out mind to it we are Very capable of doing for ourselves and others, in some cases more than the average “able bodied” person. 
Absolutely, I agree that people with “different abilities" (thank you Damon Rozier for letting me quote you!!) or "various abilities” have to be a little more creative in how we accomplish tasks on a day to day basis, however it is those who think “disabled”, “crippled”, “UNabled” that have the Real disabilities because they are the ones with closed off minds!!
As Ms. Wheelchair Washington I like to think I am helping to represent NOT a “disabled” community, but very much a “differently abled” (once again thank you Damon) community or people with various abilities.