A New Perspective

I’ve been meaning to write this blog for a number of weeks. I decided today was going to be the day, no matter how many interruptions I had. And I’ve had quite a few today, several of which have kept me away from the computer since I started this post early this morning. But, that is a blog for another day.

On October 26, I fell in the gravel parking lot of a local restaurant. It was a nasty fall and to make a very long story a little shorter I ended up with several stitches in my face and a “sprained” right wrist.  I had knee surgery scheduled for the following week and decided to proceed with the surgery. After all, the wrist was only sprained, right?

Knee surgery was a success but more involved than anticipated. Right wrist continued to be extremely painful. Almost four weeks to the day I fell, I finally convinced the doctor that something was wrong. He had the radiologist review the MRI, looking at one specific area. Lo and behold, there was the chipped bone that had been causing so much pain. I’m now in the fifth week of wearing a cast and in the eighth week of walking with a cane. I should be freed from both next week.

NOW, to the reason for this post – because all of that was background information so you would understand where I’m coming from: I have  been temporarily “handicapped” for almost eight weeks. It has been an eye-opening experience to say the least. I’ve been stared at, looked down on, ignored when it was obvious I needed help. I’ve even received extremely rude looks, as if to say I had no right to be there – and this happened at several locations.

But then there were the wonderful people who graciously helped me – many going “above and beyond” – to assist me. There was Morgan, who saw me struggling to get out of my car at the local Chamber meeting earlier this month. Not only did she help me with the items I needed to carry into the building, but she also sat with me during the meeting to make sure I had everything I needed. There were the employees at a hotel not too far from where I live. I went there for a few days last week to finish writing a book proposal. Every employee who saw me was by my side in a heartbeat, wanting to know if there was anything I needed, anything they could do for me. The waitress in the restaurant even cut my steak up for me. These employees were so tremendous, the next thing I will be writing is a letter of commendation to the manager of the hotel and the home office of this hotel chain.

I’ve had a very, very small glimpse of what handicapped people’s lives are like- day in, day out. It has given me a new perspective on their lives, and greater respect for them.