Being in a wheelchair is hard.
There I said it. It’s a daily struggle internally between function and sloth, independence and complete dependance fulling your dreams and becoming just another statistic with federal aid. Every day I wake up and think about how easy it would be to give up, just roll back over and sleep till 3, blow off school and say this is my future it’s easy and fun to be lazy. Then I think about the man I want to be and I say no, I need to get up, I need to move, I have goals… a future beyond my bedroom (cozy as it may be)
So I go then to school, to learn in the hallowed halls of higher education and right away I’m faced with my first choice. THE DOOR. This may seem trivial to some after all this door is not special, it’s of normal door height and weight, does not lead to a distant land i.e. Narnia or the land of Oz; no it is merely a door and yet it poses a challange with which it is dealt.
In this case a glass door with glass windows on either side through which I can see in or out depending if I am coming or going. The choice is more of a dance of sorts, do I lead and open it myself? do I wait for someone to come up and open it behind mew because they shouted “HOLD ON I GOT IT!!!’ from ten feet back? or do I wait and try to lock eyes with someone inside so they will open it for me?
If the latter of the three happen as they often do, I be sure to say thank you as often and loudly as it can be mustered. I also do my best to avoid feet, I know it will hurt and hey, you opened the door so I’m looking out for you..
I am now inside the school. A task which for the majority of you takes at most ten seconds normally, becomes a five minute tango of indecision for me. I now have to tangle with people some who walk slow or are grouped up or are talking and don’t move at all. It’s like avoiding a minefield of people who you don’t WANT to hit but you know if you wanted to you could absolutely pancake on your way to class.
On my way to class my view isn’t particularly scenic, Lafayette proper is flat and not overly breathtaking. Once I get to school though, my view changes to butts. Yes butts because I’m sitting down while everyone else is walking it’s safe to say if you’re not facing me, I’m looking at your butt. Not by choice, I don’t seek out your butt, it just happens. Seriously the majority of y’all are sitting down right now. Think about it, go on, take a second and look around. Here a butt, there a butt, everywhere a butt butt.
Enough about butts; continuing with the school saga I usually begin my day with a trip to the school bookstore, I’ve worked there the past several semesters so I go say hello to co-workers particularly on Mondays and Friday to talk football with the manager. After I talk shop for a few minutes every so often having to stop to get out of the way of someone in line or a group of more than three people entering the store at once I leave. I know what i have to deal with next and it makes my door tango look like the chicken dance as performed by a kindergarden class.
There are two elevators at my school, sometimes one if there was a failure of some kind and three stories of classes in one building. thats all, I don’t attend school at the observation deck of the empire state building but based on the foot traffic of those elevators you sure would thinks so. The amount of people in line for the elevator is often daunting and 98% of them have no reason to use it (and some could benefit from use of the stairs if you catch my meaning) but good lord if I try to get on forget about it. People sometimes push and shove their way in, all to get to class faster but what they don’t know is its actually faster to use the stairs. In my 24 years I have learned patience so I now instinctually resist the urge to yell “USE THE STAIRS FATTY!!!” because that readers would be rude and I am at this point too late to care so move it! In the future you should know that I don’t mind if we share an elevator as most of my handicap-able cohorts can attest. As long as I get on too, I don’t care so I don’t need to know how you “twisted your ankle”. Save your lame excuse for laziness because as soon as those elevator doors open, I’m leaving you in my dust slow poke.