First off know this... I do not consider myself handicapped just simply recovering and in need of some handicap services some of the time. However during these last almost 4 weeks of being home and 2+ weeks of driving I have encountered some unbelievable people out there.
We have had a handicapped parking tag since Patrick's bout with SB a few years ago. It automatically renews itself every 4 years. I could have gotten my own with my CFS diagnosis but why bother we really don't need to have 4 blue tags around the house now do we? I also will admit that I love having that baby at Christmas time, though honestly it seems like every other car today has a tag. I guess this is a little bit of the pot calling the kettle black as maybe I've taken advantage of our blue tag in the year or two between Patrick's recovery and my recent diagnosis :0( Well with that self-incrimination over I am going to share with you some of my recent experiences.
The three most frustrating experiences I'm going to share each represent a different handicap service.
While attending a function where we knew most everyone I needed to use the restroom. As with most facilities they have a handicapped stall ~ONE. As I make my way in a friend stopped me to say hello. This restroom isn't huge so women are going around me. This entire time me and my walker are facing towards the stalls so obviously I'm not on my way out. While the bathroom is busy there are open stalls available. Can you guess what happened....
That's right ~ someone walks right past me and goes into the handicapped stall!!! I literally cannot fit into a regular stall with my walker so I have to wait. You know how it is when you need to go and you're oh so close. Well maybe your body doesn't turn on you like mine does but when I am that close it is as if Niagara Falls needs to bust out. I had 1 or 2 people ask if they can help me and in a not so quite voice I say thank you but I really need to use the handicapped stall as I need the bars for help. I'll admit that I have always preferred to use the handicapped stalls but I have never nor would I ever use one with a handicapped person waiting! Of course to me it seemed like she took an extra long time and said nothing as she finally walked past. It blows my mind that people are truly that oblivious to others around them.
There are reasons we offer these services for those individuals. Thank heavens. I know there are plenty of people out there who take advantage of them but there are just as many people who rely on them. I can honestly say that this experience has really made me very self-aware of how I use and even have possibly misused them in the past. Maybe this new Bren will be a little better~ we can only hope