Allison Wallis

Essayist

Location icon United States

I'm a disability studies scholar, activist and essayist. I write about pain, the opioid crisis, mindfulness, parenting, disability, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Mast Cell Activation Disorder, and life in Hawai'i. I am working on a memoir about how I self-diagnosed my genetic conditions and cerebrospinal fluid leaks after doctors insisted there was nothing wrong with me.

Portfolio
Electric Literature
01/23/2020
Why Aren't Writing Retreats More Disability-Friendly? - Electric Literature

Once a year, I fill out an online application for Hedgebrook, a writer's retreat in Washington State. I attach a writing sample and send it off into the ether. Seven or eight months later, I get an email with a denial. In the past, this hasn't been too upsetting; Hedgebrook is incredibly competitive.

Medium
08/13/2019
My Body Isn't Made for Sex Anymore

Sex & disability, an exercise in frustration My body doesn't feel like it's made for sex anymore. The body I had when I first met my husband, the body that lifted 50-pound bags of flour and kept up with the men in the kitchen, running a station solo during the busiest of Friday nights, has morphed into a body that can't quite keep itself knit together.

Hawaiireporter
8/28/2016
Living with Cerebrospinal Fluid Leaks

The dura serves an important purpose in the body–it holds your cerebral spinal fluid, which is the fluid that creates a buffer between your brain and spinal cord and your body. CSF fluid is clear and colorless and bathes and soothes your brain and spinal cord, transporting nutrients and eliminating waste. It also serves as a shock absorber and helps to protect the brain and spine from trauma. It flows in and out of ventricles in the brain, soothing nerves and the lining of the brain. One way...

Motherly
01/19/2018
I learned what kind of mother I am during the false nuclear alert in Hawaii

What do you tell your child when you're pretty sure you're about to die with her? How do you comfort your child when you're terrified yourself?Last Saturday morning, a ballistic missile alert was sent to Hawai'i residents. Thankfully, it turned out to be a false alarm, but during the 38 minu...

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