I am a firm believer in making people feel valued and so when a friend of my friend had something happen to him recently, I checked in and asked him how he was. I don’t know him well, but I do know that it is our duty as people to make others feel cared for. So, we chatted a bit – and we got to talking about my wheelchair – I said something along the lines of “yeah I think it is rad” because I do.
I honestly wouldn’t change it. The use of a wheelchair for me, has provided me with a sense of purpose and a deeper understanding of the world around me; with that being said though, when I was talking to this person I wasn’t 100% truthful.
The truth plain n simple is that as much as I wouldn’t change the fact I have my condition, having said condition is at times incredibly difficult. At the end of last year I had a major operation and missed a term of school, despite missing that term I passed my school exams at my desired level and achieved a leadership position; however I missed out on receiving a badge that might not seem like a big deal and in thinking logically I know it’s not.
However, for a little while I thought that people are going to judge me and think things like “oh she doesn’t deserve the position, she only got it so they’d be diversity [in the team]” – and that’s the thing – being disabled taints your view point for most things, sometimes it is a good thing that this happens because it allows you to come at life from a different perspective. Other times though disability taints your views for the worse.
When a person I was fond (so 1960’s of me) of told me he was seeing someone the first thing I thought was, ‘I shouldn’t have thought I had a chance anyway’ because disabled people aren’t seen in society as desirable. Not saying we aren’t desirable (duh have you seen Liam Malone) but because I am not seen by society in this way, it becomes automatic to blame my disability when things like this happen.
Sometimes it isn’t big things that bother me about the disability, sometimes it is the smallest things like trying to cross the road or putting on my shoes. What I am saying is, that I was wrong to imply to this person yesterday that I am always in love with my condition, it does get annoying. It is frustrating.
That frustration however, means nothing in comparison to the positive feelings I feel in response to my condition, my condition is one small part of me – and yes sometimes it does bother me. But this is only 1% of the time. The other 99% I feel pretty damn lucky to live this life.
If you are having a hard time at the moment know that it is temporary, because your life has value. When you believe that and act using that as your springboard, then you are hella powerful.