Mini Rant About my Wheelchair

I just want to say Thanks to all who recognize that just because my body doesn’t work  quite right,doesn’t mean my mind quit working also. I very much appreciate the people who simply talk to me normally. Often, people don’t know how to react to a person in a chair. Most are curious about how I got there, or how I manage certain tasks, or any number of other things. Maybe they have never really known a disabled person before. It is quite common to “dumb it down” during conversation like you would to a child. While I understand this instinct and am not truly offended by it, I do sincerely like to be treated like an intelligent woman. Just because I am suddenly shorter than average and always have a place to sit does not mean I am stupid. It means I am shorter than you.

For the most part, I don’t mind when someone asks me what happened, or any of the other myriad of questions they may have. It is a highly personal thing to ask, but I would rather answer the questions than spread hate and encourage prejudice. I particularly like answering the questions of a child. They are honestly simply curious and trying to learn. It bothers me when parents discourage honest curiosity in small children. how else are they supposed to learn if they don’t ask? 

I am bothered by pity though. It really angers me when someone looks at me with that “Oh you poor thing” look in their eyes. Pity, as far as I know, has never really helped anyone. Another thing that bothers me is when someone doesn’t know how to deal with me because I am disabled, so they simply ignore me. I am thinking in particular of a recent incident when I was struggling with a heavy door while in my wheelchair and three people simply stared, a fourth looked at me with pity in her eyes and walked through the door without pausing. It had shut again before I could react to get through. It is not rude to ask “do you need help with that?” that question allows me to say no thank you, if it is something I can manage, or yes please if I can’t do it. I have lost count of the number of women’s restrooms my husband has seen in the process of helping me with the doors. and the number of women who simply walked on by without comment or pause.

OK, enough ranting. Today’s lesson in my life, was about learning to like myself. I need to stop worrying about everyone else’s opinions and find a reason to think positively about me. I am working on it. So far all I have some up with is that I like my tattoos. I have 3, with plans for 4 more right now.

Vacations

Let me start with an apology, My right hand is very very sore today. My fingers are curled up and refuse to cooperate  with me, so if there are more grammatical errors than normal, please try to bear with me. I am doing the best I can without it. Now, on to the fun part.

Day one of this trip was nothing but driving, or more accurately riding in the car fighting motion sickness while my husband drove. Note to self, 1000 miles in one day is a bad idea.

Day 2 & 3 were spent recovering from the drive mostly. We did do a little bit of shopping and sight-seeing, but I spent a great deal of time being pushed around in my wheelchair.(No car noises this time darn it.) We have since then been visiting family and more sight-seeing. I do have to say my husband is certainly getting his exercise pushing me around.

As much as I dislike it, I have very dependant on not only my wheelchair but also my prescription pain killers this week and expect that to continue for a while. I dislike taking pain killers at all, but am at least happy that my doctor agrees with me that narcotic pain killers like Vicodin are not for me.

Part of the reason I am using these aids is because without them I would have a pretty crappy vacation, and would ruin my husbands trip as well. I like to think of myself as an independent person, and like to do as much as I can without help. My Mom once told me that “sometimes being independent meant taking help when offered and asking for it when needed. The need for independence and self-reliance has to be weighed against the greater good.” Insisting on self-reliance when sightseeing would make the entire family suffer, myself included.  I really don’t like how dependant I am on this trip, but I would like even less ruining my entire family’s vacation. We don’t see each other near enough and should ALL enjoy the time we have together.

I guess I believe that just because I am IN pain, does not give me the right to BE a pain. In any situation.

There was much more I wanted to say here, but at the moment whatever it is has escaped me. (Hate getting old.)

Take care of you, and remember to celebrate all your victories no matter how small. As always feel free to ask any questions you want. I will answer the best I can.