Some Help For the Able Bodied On How to Interact With the Disabled
I have so many but today was interesting. I went to the car dealership to see if my wheelchair would fit in the trunk of the Kia Niro plug in (side bar yes it does). It is Summer and it is hot. I don’t usually leave the house like this. I am hauling my chair in all of its’ parts from my trunk (Prius v) to the new one. They are heavy I am grunting (the whill is awesome but if you have pots or Eds get some help with the wheels). The car sales man who is lovely is standing watching VERY uncomfortably. After I have jengaed all of the pieces in he says “I would have helped you but I am afraid f breaking your chair.”
Some thoughts: If he had just started helping without asking that would have been problematic. I do not appreciate it when people push my wheelchair or move me without asking and yes my chair is expensive but I can explain how to move it safely. That is what I would have like him to have done. Tell me he is scared to break the chair but would like to help if he could.
Like most things ask permission before touching and if you think you can help offer.
Oh yes please don’t pray over me. You can offer to pray for me later. It is kind and nice. Not my jam but I appreciate kind thoughts but waving hands over my legs while assuming god does not like me enough to make me better but your one on one relationship will1. make him’her/they change their mind 2. think if you one so holy are intervening for me then I must not be THAT bad of a sinner 3. You are god’s secretary reminding them of little oversites like you know giving it me ligaments that hold my bones in or a heart that has the reaction danger of oh lets’ sleep it will be over one way or another. Next person who does this I am pranking.
Please look up from your phone when on streets especially when backing up for that perfect selfie. I know it would be the world’s CUTEST meet cute story for you to fall into my lap and we fall madly in love but I already have someone I am madly in love and do not have the attention span, energy, or want for a third. Stop being ignorant of your surroundings seriously we will both get hurt and i am done steering into walls to save anyone over the age of reason.
Talk to me and not my husband or friend. Yes, they know me well but only I have that mixture of sarcasm, shrillness, and indignant you tune in for. They are not my mind reader and if you would like to know how I am doing I have 10k listeners a month who can attest that I am perfectly capable of giving my opinion. Also please don’t fake whisper with sad glassy eyes and do the hand pat of sympathy when walking away I and whoever are in my company will be laughing about that for the rest of the day.
One the other side if you have good intentions and make a little slip don’t be embarrassed I LOVE THESE MOMENTS. To the lovely woman in the Burlingame book store who I met my first nervous self conscious day out in my wheelchair thank you. Thank you for looking at the book in my lap and saying, “Oh my god that is the best book you will sit down and never want to get up…” Best story ever. Thank you. Laugh with me otherwise I will look like a maniacal cripple cackling at you. We all make blunders so lets have a laugh together. Trust me I have a body designed by Picasso and Dali on LSD in a particularly distracted mood I have a sense of humor.
What are your tips for the abled? Comment Below