|I used to have a sweatshirt with this quip on it. I was newly diagnosed and newly disabled. I thought it was real funny. Well, maybe not REAL funny, but amusing. Other people seeing it would smile, and tell me they liked my sweatshirt, and we’d all have a little chuckle. But it always left me with a bit of a guilty aftertaste.|
The shirt got frayed and filthy, mostly on the cuffs, mostly with mud and dirt from the hand rims of my wheelchair. It has long since been retired. I think were it not for the stains and fraying, I’d’a sent it to the rag bag anyway. Once the reality of disability set in, it didn’t seem so funny any more. I’ve come to a better understanding of the issues surrounding disability. Disabled people way before me worked very hard to ensure that I had access to those parking spaces, and more. As an advocate-by-default, I need to honor those who came before me and did the real work to ensure my right to equal access.
If we were just for the parking, none of us would be in it.
3 thoughts on “”
I agree that we need to be very grateful to those who fought for the disability reserved parking spaces.
It is great that you were able to have a sense of humour about your illness at all, Stephen, even if the humour isn’t as resonant now. Do you find yourself pretending (not telling people how you really feel, or how much a short visit will impact the rest of your week etc) in order to make able bodied people feel more comfortable?
Yes, I do the, “I’m fine,” bit. Or i beg off with, “I’m tired.” I’ve only used my MS 2 or 3 times as a way to get out of something I didn’t want to do.
I wouldn’t mind betting that those things you didn’t go to weren’t going to be of material benefit to you even if you’d been well! 😄