This is Vanessa Harris, with fun4thedisabled.com. Today, my friend Reveca Torres, who is a photographer, artist and filmmaker and power wheelchair user and founder of Backbones, which is an organization that helps people with spinal cord injury or disease, is my guest. Reveca breaks down her five tips for remaining balance during the quarantine. Here’s Reveca.

>> My name is Reveca Torres, and I’m going to share with you some tips of things I have been doing during quarantine to stay balanced.

Number one, I have been trying to eat well, been looking for foods that are healthy, and that will help boost my immune system. I want my body to be ready in case I were to get sick so that I will be able to fight off any viruses or bacteria. Number two, exercise. There has been so much online content now and everything has switched over to virtual programming. So there actually has been a lot of programming for people with disabilities or wheelchair users to be able to find ways to exercise from home.

And some of my favorite places have been Next Steps in Chicago, Adapt Advanced, they have such strong program for wheelchair users. And they’re out of Beaverton, Oregon BORP, which is B.O.R.P, and they’re in Northern California and also the AXIS Project in New York. If you’re looking for exercising, there’s some great content. You can check out those four organizations.

Number three is sleep. And I’m going to give myself two thumbs down for that because I’ve been trying to be successful with my sleep, but I can do better. I’m looking for pillows. I’ve been trying to look for pillows and ways to be more comfortable and get better sleep, but I will continue trying.

And the fourth thing is apps on my phone. There are a couple apps that have been really useful to me during this time. And one of them is called Headspace.  And it’s a meditation app. There are many free apps available. And this one has really helped me, you know, sometimes to help me get to sleep right before bed. I will do a meditation or throughout my day if I’m stressed out or I just need to relax a little bit. I will do a meditation.

The second app is is called BARD, and that stands for Braille and audio recording download. And it is available from the Library of Congress.  And it’s audio books and Braille books that are available for people who are blind or people with disabilities that have trouble holding or flipping pages.And this is available for free. You can check that out. And so there’s some really awesome for me to be able to listen to audiobooks throughout the day.

And lastly, my fifth thing that has helped me throughout the pandemic is having plants and garden. It’s been really nice to have greenery both inside my home and outside. And it’s something that has helped make me feel happy throughout my day. To be able to water my plants or to just start planting from seeds and watching things grow.

And also to learn how to make it accessible for a person in a wheelchair. I have had family create elevated beds for my plants and also different nozzles for me to attach to the hose so that I can be able to water the plants.

These are just a couple of things that have helped me throughout the past few weeks. And I hope that by me sharing them to help you and that you share your tips with other people. Thank you.

>> I think Reveca summed it up quite nicely. Did you notice that Reveca had strawberries, peppers, chives, cilantro, basil, mint, tomatoes and cucumbers in her garden? We all need reminders on how to remain balanced. Reveca mentioned a few that I find important. It’s good to get feedback from others. What do you do to remain balanced? Did any of the tips for staying balanced that Reveca mention strike a chord with you? Let us know in the comments below.

To find out more about backbones, the nonprofit that helps people with spinal cord injury or disease go to backbonesonline.com. This is Vanessa Harris of fun4thedisabled.com. To get more for our videos and stories. Sign up for our newsletter. See you soon. Bye bye.

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