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Disability

Some Days It Just Hurts

Frustrated guy with hand over faceThere’s no denying that some days it just hurts. No matter how I act, no matter what I do, the world simply won’t budge.

I’m walking to the bus stop this morning and arrive just as the bus pulls up. I walk up and say to this guy who is in line, “Hey, can you tell me what number bus this is?” He turns around, does a double take, puts his hand on my shoulder in the kindest most disgustingly patronizing way says, “It’s an 8. Is that your bus? Do you need help?” All of this in a tone that places me somewhere below the functional level of a 2 year old.

I say, “No, that’s not my bus,” and walk away, just wanting to get away from this walking attitude problem shaped like a human.

Oh, but it doesn’t end there. A minute later after all the people in line are on the bus this guy jumps off the bus and runs back to me to ask, …You guessed it!! “Son, did you want this bus?” When I responded that I didn’t he said, “Are you sure?” I was. “OK,” he says and I realize he’s the driver of the damn bus. He’s making this entire bus load of people wait while he finds out if the blind man really does, or does not, want to ride his bus.

So, what can I say. There will come a time when this sort of humiliation will not exist, but that time is not now. For now, we must learn to empathize, tolerate, avoid and educate. If pain teaches lessons we have buckets full of it. If bearing humiliation strengthens we’re really really strong.

If on the other hand, you slip occasionally and say, “Take your hands off me and stop treating me like a two year old.” There’s a place for that too. Its the only thing some people understand or, maybe they won’t understand. maybe you’ll just feel better. And, that’s good sometimes as well.

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