Speaker 1 00:00:04 Hey, and welcome to freewill. And with carton podcast, I'm your host carton, Wyckoff wheelchair warrior in disability advocate. On this podcast, we share inclusive principles. Talk about stories, people with disabilities in order to break down barriers today, I have remode Reed on here who is a native of Charlotte, North Carolina, or mooned Reed began acting at the age of five in communities place through his school church and porch productions in 2015, his starring role as donkey and a North Carolina children's theater summer camp production of Shrek junior sparked a more serious desire and love for acting in 2017. He decided to give it a real shot and audition for Disney's the lion King musical. He landed the role as young Silva and toured with their North American <inaudible> company. He performed in 13 cities for 10 months and appeared in four out of eight shows every week. While on tour Reed was asked to join the award-winning musical on Broadway, where he performed as young Simba for three more months before he landed his role on just roll with it.
Speaker 1 00:01:09 Breed stars as Owen flat and accomplished student who thrives on detailed schedules and being highly organized in Disney channels. Just roll with it. The first of its kind series as a hybrid of a scripted family comedy and an improvisational comedy in which the studio audience members vote on the outcome of certain scenes read is a sickle cell anemia warrior, and an advocate for those who live with the disorder, he's determined not to let his condition to find him. And you want students Spire others to continue to pursue their dreams no matter what life throws their way. Currently Ramon lives and resides in Los Angeles with his family. Please rate, review, subscribe, and follow this podcast, share it with a friend and download the app. I access life. It is a mobile app on Google play and Apple app store that rates places on accessibility in the built environment to bring transparency. In this episode, we talk about representation and inclusion of people with disabilities in the entertainment industry, how Ramon self discloses his disability and why he's proud of it, how he elevates people with disabilities in the work environment, a community-based engagement within the disability community. The impact sickle cell has on Ramone's busy schedule and inclusive event planning for sickle cell anemia warriors. You can find Ramon on Instagram at I am Ramon Reed and on Twitch. Call me Rizzy. All right, here we go. Enjoy.
Speaker 0 00:02:52 Hey Ramon.
Speaker 1 00:02:53 Thanks for being here on the podcast. How's it going tonight?
Speaker 0 00:02:56 It's going very, very good. Thanks for having
Speaker 1 00:03:00 Awesome. So glad to have you, and I know that you are obviously well known on Disney channels, just roll with it. And you were also in the lion King on Broadway. So a lot of, a lot of really awesome things that you're doing, then you also have sickle cell and I wanted to just bring the attention on that. Starting out, talking about your journey and kind of just like walk us through a typical day with sickle cell.
Speaker 2 00:03:26 Absolutely. So I'm grieving through everyone who may not know who I am. My name is Ramon Reed, and I started as the Owen on the Disney channel show, just roll with it. And I deal with a hereditary blood disorder called sickle cell anemia disease. And, uh, it's basically when you're very exhausted or your body goes through temperature change or you're dehydrated and a whole bunch of other things, it just differs from the person, but it makes your red blood cells into like a sickle or a Crescent moon. And those Crescent moon red blood cells get stuck throughout your body. And it blocks blood from going where it needs to go, which causes extreme pain. So that's something I've been dealing with since I was born. And we didn't find out that I had sickle cell until I was two or three, I believe. And after that, we just started taking the precautions and taking the medicines that were needed. And I've definitely had some trials and tribulations and bouts with it, but I really think it's more of a blessing than a curse.
Speaker 1 00:04:28 I really like how you say it's more of a blessing and a curse because I think I time and time again, I I've interviewed a number of people on this podcast with different disabilities. And you always say that, you know, I wouldn't change anything about how maybe like there's some days, right. That you wish weren't as horrible as they are, but like overall it's like you're dealt with those cars and you've learned to really thrive in that. And so kind of talk to us a little bit more about maybe that mindset shift that you had, or did that ever happen to you or have you always had such like a positive attitude about it? Yeah, well,
Speaker 2 00:05:04 I'm a very family oriented person. I have a very large family back in Charlotte, North Carolina, which is where I'm born and raised and just being surrounded by family 24 seven grandma, grandpa, and uncles, cousins, just being surrounded by them. That really made me be who I am today and be as confident as I am, but also made me see that none of us are different than each other. Even though we may have a different social status or more followers or a nicer car, we're all the same. And I think it was when I went through my worst sickle cell crisis, which is what we call it when, uh, those red blood cells turn into Sickles. And I think was in 2015, if I'm not mistaken, I absolutely lost the ability to walk. And my body basically stopped producing blood. And without blood, you cannot survive.
Speaker 2 00:05:53 So from there I had to have a blood transfusion and I was sent home the hospital because they said I was fine. I definitely was not fine. So a couple of days later I went back and once I went back, just from there, I stayed for at least two weeks. So altogether I was in the hospital for a month and a couple of weeks, but I had to completely learn how to walk again. I was walking with a Walker for, uh, at least a month. And then, uh, after that I gained the strength again to, uh, walk. So just, just the simple things that we take for granted, like being able to get out the bed I couldn't do, or, uh, being able to get out my hospital bed to walk a couple inches to the restroom. I can, I do that. So, uh, just, just having that all taken away from you and seeing how hard it gets, I just wanted to use the battles that I have had and have at this moment as a testimony and as an uplifter for others who may not see the brighter side of whatever they're going through, even if it's not a disease that you can not control.
Speaker 1 00:06:59 I really like how a lot of it is backed by your large family and how supportive it is. I'm from Atlanta, Georgia. <inaudible>. Yeah. Family is like, you know, grew up sitting around at the dinner table every night. Like be like, you're not getting food, unless you come and sit down, like no cell phones at the table. Like, Oh man, that's still happens. Now. I live in LA now, you know, like Thanksgiving is like ridiculous. There's like 50 people there and it's like, you know, you're first, second, third, fourth cousins. It doesn't matter. You're just all family, all family. And if someone comes in, you still family, totally. A hundred percent, hundred percent. And, um, yeah, the little things taking that for granted, for me and just like walking I'll, I'll share a little bit about myself as well is, um, Saba progressive disease. And, you know, I walked all the way up until I was 23, 24 ish and I'm 27 now.
Speaker 1 00:07:59 So I've been using a wheelchair for about four years and yeah, I definitely know what it's like to not have, like have those things taken away from you, but then just being able to realize and be thankful for what you have and then, um, just using that as how you said it. So while it was like a testimony for positivity and just, just be thankful for what you have and yeah, absolutely. Okay, cool. So thanks for sharing a little bit more about sickle cell and how that affects you in your day-to-day life, kind of switching gears into your work and how you manage sickle cell when you're, when you're on the job. Yeah. I kind of want to know, I like to just talk about representation and accommodations in the workplace and, um, talk to me about how you advocate for yourself. And is there that sense of inclusion in the film industry working with Disney?
Speaker 2 00:09:01 Well, if we're just speaking from an entertainment industry, um, all together, there's not a one, a lot of people with sickle cell anemia disease, or not a lot of people who are open about it. And there's also not a lot of people that know about it. So it's my job. Not only to, well, I take it upon myself for it to be my job, not only to educate those around me and those who follow me on Instagram and Twitter and YouTube, all those social medias. It's also my job to educate the people I work with on a day-to-day basis on what this is and how you can help someone who may have sickle cell anemia disease. So just as far as representation, especially being on, just roll with it, I've never felt a moment when I felt excluded because, uh, with just roll with it, just to tell you a little bit about what it is, it's the first of its kind series. So that means we're doing, uh, three times throughout the show, a horn would go off and it's called just roll with it because we improv throughout whatever, uh, our live studio audience volts on. So if they vote on Owen, which is my character has to be dumped into 20 gallons of water, they're going to make sure that water is warm. So it, cause if it's cold that's that could prompt me to go into a sickle cell crisis. So they're very considerate and they have my best interests at mind. And I really appreciate that.
Speaker 1 00:10:24 That's important that you've been able to express, you know, the limitations that you have and the things that you need in order to make sure that you don't go to a full health crisis. No one would want that, but it's good to know that they're actually mindful of that and being inclusive for that. So you, you mentioned how you were wanting to take it upon yourself. I don't ever feel like any single one person should be the only person with a disability that people should know in their network. How are you working? Yeah. Like how are you working to elevate others around you to be those allies? Well,
Speaker 2 00:11:04 Uh, I work closely and I'm starting to work more closely with this Instagram called sickle cell one Oh one. And their main objective is to educate people on what sickle cell is and all aspects of it, how much people who have sickle cell spend on healthcare a year or in their lifetime, and just, uh, what causes sickle cell, how you can help people with sickle cell. So I work closely with them to, you know, do events and do live streams on their Instagram and just interact with others who have the disease and understand. And I feel like we, as people who do have a disability or do have a disease or a, whatever you may call it, I feel like we try to be so strong and be like, no, I can keep going. We got it, we got it. But it's very important to lean on those people around you and actually be able to say no today is really not my day. I'm really not feeling up to it today. I really don't want to learn these lines because this is just what I'm going through. And it's important to have people around you that understand that.
Speaker 1 00:12:11 At what point did you gain that confidence or feel comfortable with talking about that in the industry? Were you ever scared?
Speaker 2 00:12:20 Absolutely not. I was not. And I, I don't know why to this day, because I'm a very open individual and, uh, sometimes I'm too open to the point where it gets a little morbid and dark, but, uh, but it's really just the truth because, um, one, a lot of people try to avoid it, but I believe that when you say the truth, that's the gateway to feeling, uh, emotions. And we try to hide feelings, sometimes a mess them. And we have to do that to survive in this society in everyday life. But sometimes you have to feel your feelings easy. So I was never scared and I always looked at it as an opportunity and even the things I do now, when I'm extremely nervous, if it's I'm singing in public or, uh, I got to go do something out of my comfort zone. I always try to look at it as an opportunity to make someone else smile or, uh, an opportunity for me to widen my platform.
Speaker 1 00:13:21 That's awesome. Yeah. I think that's so important just to make sure that you're always advocating for yourself and being able to do that at a younger age is better than later. Just once you gain that confidence and you have that ability to do it, you gain a following just by being honest and open. I think just being your true, authentic self is so important. So do you ever, um, w whenever you don't see whenever, you're sorry, whenever you JC and authenticity, do you ever stand up for other inequities or misrepresentation from other actors or other things that you've seen?
Speaker 2 00:14:03 Uh, yes. Absolutely. There's a lot of misrepresentation in, especially Hollywood, but everywhere you go, and there's a lot of misinterpretations and wrong information out there. So I really feel like if you see something wrong with the situation or someone that's saying something wrong, I don't care if you come off to that person, like, Oh, you're trying to be better than me, but you don't have the right information. So I'm trying to educate you on what the proper right information is. So I always, when I see it, I love to diffuse it and educate, or if I don't know something, I love to be educated from others who do know it. So I always feel like it's a give and take.
Speaker 1 00:14:44 Yeah. I always liked that motto, like see something, say something and you're right. It is very important to make sure that you're always standing up or speaking out for others that may feel like they don't have that voice or feel comfortable to kind of speak up for themselves. So what are like, what do you wish for disability representation in the entertainment industry?
Speaker 2 00:15:14 Uh, what do I wish for it? Uh, I mean, that, that's a hard question because, uh, especially being a performer and a creator, and you will know this too with your amazing podcast that we're doing here, because, you know, you, you try to not like conceal it, but you try to seem as normal as possible. So I wish that we can all just be ourselves because, um, there's is a lot of actors and singers and dancers who may be hiding their disability and feel like that's the only way they will succeed in the industry, because there's a lot of things. If you say, uh, in an audition, Oh, well, yeah, I have a child that, that could lead to you not getting the job in. It's very meticulous in particular in the industry. So I just wish them not only for people with disabilities, but just people in general that we can be ourselves and be true to ourselves and others.
Speaker 1 00:16:15 Yeah. We, we take a look at Chadwick who, yeah, we saw, I think the world was just so shocked, right? Yeah. He had cancer and I wanted to kind of know your take on, do you feel that he should have disclosed his disability or his onus earlier in his career? Or do you think that that would have been a weakness or something that he wouldn't get roles because of having the disease?
Speaker 2 00:16:45 Well, um, well, someone of the amazing Chadwick Boseman statute, a statute stature, I, uh, don't feel like he was obligated to disclose anything that is his life, that is his personal life. And he kept that to the people he was closest with, which is totally fine. And so the, uh, his last day on this earth, he was a phenomenal actor, but extremely, extremely strong fighter to be able to do the movies he did in the time that he was battling cancer. It is beyond me and beyond my interpretation of how he did it. But no, I feel like in his eyes, he did the right thing in my eyes. He did the right thing too, because people are always going to have something to say, people are always going to pick on you. People are always gonna have your back, but at the end of the day, he finished his mission that he was appointed on this earth. Yeah, yeah,
Speaker 1 00:17:43 Yeah. There's always that battle of, you know, should I disclose my disability or my illness, or should I be on? And I think it really depends on the trusting environment that's been created and whether or not you feel that, that sense of belonging and safety that you can, I mean, being at that level right. When you disclose something, I thought it goes global. Right. And so, yeah. Yeah. It's kind of like a calculated risk for, for you having sickle cell, you obviously took that calculated risk of saying like, you know, I'd rather talk about it, then get in.
Speaker 3 00:18:23 And I really appreciate like other interviews that I do, how, uh, people are always asking me, are you open to talking about this? And I think that's so important to ask someone if they're open because not everybody is, and that's totally their choice and not a bad thing at all, if they're not open to it, I would rather you respect that. But I always love the consideration that people have. Are you open to talking about your sickle cell? And I always say yes, because I've been blessed with a place to talk about it, so why not do it?
Speaker 1 00:18:55 That's awesome. Yeah. I've always been such a open activists about my muscular dystrophy very early on. Like I think started when I was like 12 or 13. So I think again, it's just, it's, it's who you are. It's a part of you and why hide that? I don't know. I guess it depends on the person. It totally does.
Speaker 3 00:19:18 It's about the person and your personality, and honestly, what you've been surrounded by. It's really all about fit.
Speaker 1 00:19:27 What do you, uh, I'm always interested in and knowing obviously with disability representation in the media and in the entertainment industry specifically, like when we look at autistic people and how they're represented in TV shows and looking at, you know, other other disabilities represented, do you generally have non-disabled people portraying disabled characters or characters with illnesses? Do you kind of like wrestle with that internally? Like, are you for that? Are you against that?
Speaker 3 00:20:00 Um, it's, uh, it really depends on the talent of the actor, honestly, because, uh, sometimes it can be very cringe and, uh, come off as disrespectful actually. Yeah. People who may be autistic and, uh, or just using autism as an example. But, uh, I've seen some actors who have laid individuals who have autism in a show very, very well, like his name slips my mind, but the dude in the good doctor, he plays that extremely well. And, um, I think it's, it's all a part of seeing how you can be as respectful as, but still fulfill what the script is giving you. But yeah, I, I don't know. It's an iffy subject. It's, it's like what I take a role like that maybe, maybe not, but, uh, yeah.
Speaker 1 00:21:04 Yeah. I just always kind of wondered like, you know, if directors or producers are, are writing scripts and then whoever's casting the roles, why aren't we standing up for that? Or why aren't we saying no to that? I think it's different from my lens, right. Because I'm looking at a TV screen and I'm just like, wow, that's clearly not a person with a real life disability. Like why were they cast that role? And then, but then it's interesting to listen to what you're saying is like, you know, they're incredible actors and actresses that could play it so well, and that's so truthful and actually create strong representation in it. So I never really thought about it that way. So thanks for sharing that.
Speaker 3 00:21:47 Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. But at times it's kind of like a punch in the gut because what are you trying to say? Is there people like who have autism that can't remember lines or can't pull this off? Like what, what are you trying to communicate through the screen? So it's all about how far you read into it.
Speaker 1 00:22:06 Yeah. Yeah. Do you ever have a time when you're improvising, are you allowed to talk about sickle cell or kind of like crack jokes about disabilities or is that kind of off limits?
Speaker 3 00:22:20 Um, I feel like on my show, nothing's off limits except for, I mean, it's still business, so, you know, there's a lot off limits, but we crack jokes and thank God for editing as well, but we crack jokes. And recently we had a pig on the show and, uh, we made a lot of jokes about the pig, you know, Peter don't come get us. Um, and, but, you know, I feel like a lot of people are very soft when it comes to comedy. Now, because back in the day it was absolutely way worse. And I just think when it was more authentic and people felt freer and didn't have to worry about being politically correct, you know, and, and honestly, in my eyes being politically correct is like not being politically correct is basically just telling the truth. But I, you know, I don't think it's off limits, but it means as someone who has sickle cell, uh, I would find it offensive if you were cracking jokes about anybody with a disability.
Speaker 1 00:23:26 Okay. I'm glad you, you said that you cracking jokes.
Speaker 3 00:23:32 No, absolutely. I don't think it's cool at all. Um, yeah, yeah. It, yeah, it's uh, insensitive, but then again, we can, we were cracking jokes about a pig, but you know, then again, it's kinda like, eh, like no disabilities, that's off limits for me. But, uh, when it comes to like, you know, I, I'm an animal lover. I've been wanting a dog since I've been zero years old and I still haven't gotten my dog yet, but that's not the compensation. I don't know. I don't know. I really tell mama, I need a dog. I need one. I need a companion out here
Speaker 1 00:24:19 I do is like create a slideshow presentation that tells you all the reasons why you need a dog and how it will be good for, for growth and leadership and all those things.
Speaker 3 00:24:31 You gonna make me go on Amazon and get a projector. I promise you.
Speaker 1 00:24:37 So, um, I know in your free time you love playing Twitch and what was it like call me re Rizzy
Speaker 3 00:24:44 Call me Rosie. Yes, that is my <inaudible>.
Speaker 1 00:24:49 I love that. That was really funny. So what are you, what are you doing on Twitch these days? I personally have not played Twitch. I toured the Twitch headquarters in San Francisco, but I have not actually, which was really, really cool, but I haven't actually yet. Yeah.
Speaker 3 00:25:05 Well, I mean, Twitch being the biggest and the first, I believe streaming gaming site out there where you can stream games. I do a variety of things, which is why I call myself a variety streamer. So just yesterday when I was streaming on there, I was practicing my piano. And I was like, you know what? I feel like practicing my piano on stream and I need a practice anyway, so why not do it on the stream? So I did that and I play a series of games. I played <inaudible>, uh, modern warfare. Uh, anything you can think of, if you suggested I will play it.
Speaker 1 00:25:42 I didn't realize that Twitch also did, like, you could like stream performances, like piano. I thought it was yeah.
Speaker 3 00:25:48 Gaming. Yeah. You can stream whatever you would like. They have music categories, podcast. Um, they it's TV shows that are on there. So it's really a variety of whatever you want to do.
Speaker 1 00:26:01 Do you ever feel like you would want to use that platform for just talking about sickle cell or do you already do that?
Speaker 3 00:26:08 I already do that and I, uh, every now and again, I do get people who come in and first they asked me about the show. That's probably the leading question. And then they asked me about sickle cell or they're like Ramon. Um, I'm one who deals with sickle cell on a daily basis. And if you have any advice, so that's just amazing to see people are following me throughout all the platforms that I'm on.
Speaker 1 00:26:30 Yeah. Talk about interacting with fans or people that come to you and ask for advice. Having a community is so, has been so supportive for me and, and the honest that I have. And so, yeah. What would you say to those that don't have that community? Um,
Speaker 3 00:26:50 You know, you can't say, uh, find that community because I feel like when you say that it's like, well, that's why I'm coming to you in the first place. You know? So my thing is, you know, maybe bill Joel or an ad. No, that sounds hard because even me, sometimes throughout this whole pandemic, I feel like I don't know how to talk to people anymore. Like I came back to work and I was like, what do I say no, but yeah, one option is building one, or just finding someone that's open to just accept you into a, what they built or what they have, because believe it or not, there's a lot of evil people out here, but I truly believe there's more people for you than people who are against you. So there's, there's thousands and thousands of people who will be happy to talk to you. And I'm one of those thousands and thousands and hundred thousands of people will be happy to talk to you and happy to give you advice and, uh, happy, you know, just to interact with you. You can have in my stream or get me on Twitter. I mean, Instagram is kind of hard because I do receive a lot of DPMs as is, but, um, yeah, on all the other platforms I'm totally open to just talking to
Speaker 1 00:28:04 Got it. Yeah. I think it's kind of like what you mentioned earlier was, you know, you kind of take it upon yourself to be that activist and be someone there out in the community talking about it. And when, when you start to do that, when you kind of open up the door to that possibility, it's then a lot of people come to you and share their story. I get countless people all the time coming to me and they're like, I have this crazy wicked illness or something. And they tell me their whole entire life story to me. And I'm like, wow, thank you. Like, you know, it's really fascinating to like, learn about people's struggles. And I think at the end of the day, like we all have our stuff that we have, we all have the cards that were dealt with. And yeah, I think it's just important to, to build that community and to talk about it with others and kind of create just a world of inclusion and belonging. So it's kind of just what we're all about.
Speaker 3 00:29:00 Yeah. And it's so great to see just how open people are just to talk about it.
Speaker 1 00:29:06 Did you ever find when you're making friends or have you had friends that have no longer wanted to be your friend because of sickle cell? Uh, no. That's great.
Speaker 3 00:29:19 That's great. And, uh, um, I love that I haven't had that issue, but I know there's a lot of people out there who do, and uh, to those people who do meet others, who don't want to be their friend, just because of something they cannot control. I say that it's nothing about you. It's something internally with them. Or, and they're trying either please somebody around them or I don't know, prove something to themselves, but, uh, it's nothing about you. And like I said, I believe there's more people for you than who are against you.
Speaker 1 00:29:54 Yeah. That's so important. So being in the, I work in the corporate environment. And so we plan where historically we've planned, you know, a hundred thousand person in-person events. And I'm always thinking about how can we better help people with disabilities, especially invisible disabilities, right. Sickle cell being a invisible disability until you post about it on Instagram that you're in the hospital. Right. Right. So what are some things that event planners can be mindful of when they're planning large scale in person events to accommodate sickle cell?
Speaker 3 00:30:34 Um, this is interesting because others have worst cases of sickle cells than maybe the person beside them, but just to accommodate everyone, if it's like a summer event or you're having something there that's like a communal pool. I mean, I'll be, we'll have a communal pool for a minute, but if you're having an event that's like a communal pool or something, make sure it's the proper temperature. Like I think it's like 80 degrees or something that will be comfortable for people who don't have sickle cell, but also perfect for, for people who do have it and, you know, have lots of water because hydration is important for, uh, people with sickle cell to keep the blood flowing smoothly. And, uh, you know, I think, I think that's it just have water, you know? And then after that you can have whatever carnival games or whatever you're trying to have.
Speaker 1 00:31:29 So you don't really necessarily, and this is just so I have an understanding you don't necessarily have to monitor your level of activity or do you,
Speaker 3 00:31:39 I, uh, yes. I think all people with sickle cell should definitely monitor the level of activity because even me and with the profession I'm in, I can go, go, go for a long time and not sleep. And I'll notice that I haven't been sleeping. Yeah. And that affects not only the regular human, but especially
Speaker 1 00:31:59 Yeah. Sleep remote, remote rest, you know, like your viral video. That's actually how I found you. That's amazing. Like a lot of people I knew, I was like, I'm waiting for the time to plug it. It was going to happen,
Speaker 3 00:32:15 But it happened, it happened, but yet you'll just be going and going and not realize that you're very exhausted. And you have like the biggest bags. I know your eyes, you're setting the Guinness world record or something, but, uh, yeah,
Speaker 1 00:32:32 For the wrong reason for the role.
Speaker 3 00:32:35 But I think that's on the person with sickle cell to monitor. And also if it's like a sickle cell event, like specifically for people with sickle cell, they will have all the precautions. They'll have people walking around, probably handing out waters, handing out paraphernalia or whatever it is. So I have a really great time at those kinds of events.
Speaker 1 00:32:57 Oh, those are like sickle cell awareness events, like walks and fundraiser type things out on a field. I know you're talking about,
Speaker 3 00:33:04 Yeah. Back in the Charlotte, we would have a two K I think it was every year, man. I miss that. But, uh, I had the best time there.
Speaker 1 00:33:15 Yeah. Those are great. We always have, the muscular dystrophy association always has walks all over the world and they always have those annually. It got converted to virtual this year, which is just not the same. It's just not you miss, like having all the people around you and just like having a grand old time and live music and food. And I don't know a lot of just carnival games and stuff, games all the good times. Yeah. I know. What are those big, like, uh, they're like plastic inflatable balls that you get inside of them. Yeah. You run into each other and like the Summa Russell suits and stuff. It was a really common, well, cool. Is there, um, I was kind of like, I just wanted you to really have an open discussion with you about representation and industry and diversity and inclusion. And if there's anything that you want to talk about more about, um, feel free to open Mike it now
Speaker 3 00:34:15 Open my kid. I mean, all I have to say is, uh, this has definitely been a hard time for me as far as COVID-19 and the pandemic with sickle cell, because I have had a sickle cell crisis in the pandemic. We went out to do like a mini vacation in another part of California. And I got in the pool then because I was doing something. I was like, Oh, I'm fine. Got in it a second time. And after that, I started to have a pain crisis in my test. And I was like, Oh, Whoa. That's, uh, that doesn't feel too good. So it's, it's been a hard and challenging time, but I'm making it through and I hope you continue to do the same. And uh, just having people out here like you and who are the voice for people with disabilities and diseases all around the world, we definitely need people like you, especially now.
Speaker 1 00:35:08 Thank you so much. I really appreciate that. And just a quick follow-up on that when you do go through one of those crisis and especially now with COVID, are you scared that you're more at risk having to go to the hospital and knowing that there's COVID patients there. Right. You know, that's
Speaker 3 00:35:25 Yeah. Um, I actually did go to the hospital. We drove back to LA where we live and we went to the hospital and I did not feel in danger at all. I like everybody was taking proper precautions and, uh, the only thing they didn't give us a COVID test, but I don't know if that's just because in the, at the time there was a very few of them and needed them for personnel and people who were going out and working and things of that nature, but I felt very safe.
Speaker 1 00:35:56 Good. That's great. Yeah. I think with COVID, it's really effected the, just really community and all different kinds of ways from a lot of pharmacies closing down. And for those that need special pharmacies, they've now have to like travel further or there, they can't get their meds or can't go to the hospital because they can't get food. Like, for me, it was like all the restaurants shut down. So it was like, wow, how am I going to feed myself? Cause I don't, I don't work too hard for me. So I'm like, how am I supposed to eat? Right. And so those are like the things that you don't really think about when the world is just so open all the time and we can literally Amazon prime anything, and it'll be here in an hour. It's crazy. Crazy. So I think how we have to kind of put things on pause. Well, great. Um, give us your plugs. Where can people find you?
Speaker 3 00:36:50 Absolutely. You can find me on Instagram at, I am Ramon that Ray, you can find me on YouTube at my dis my name Ramon Reed and, uh, Twitter, Ramon rig 20. And of course Twitch called me. Rizzy
Speaker 1 00:37:03 <inaudible>
Speaker 3 00:37:07 I'm not sure.
Speaker 1 00:37:12 Awesome. All right. Well, thanks so much for being here. I really appreciate it.
Speaker 3 00:37:17 Thank you so much for having me.
Speaker 0 00:37:19 Thanks. Thank you friends for listening, please rate and follow this podcast or text card at (470) 588-1215 with comments and suggestions tune in next week for another disability topic.