Monday, August 16, 2010

Three words that are often ignored

There are three words that are important, often ignored and are a sign of good things.

These words are: I'm fine, thanks. It seems so simple, but it is often over-looked.

I went out to a movie with my friend last night (Scott Pilgrim vs. the world='s awesome!), and took the wheels. I had a lot of obstacles to get through because the city isn't really all that accessible. Regardless, I could make it on my own no problem. There were a lot of people who asked if I needed help, which is lovely to think about it. I'm glad I live in a city where people look-out for each other, I see it everyday. What drives me absolutely insane is when they offer help, I tell them "I'm fine, thanks" (with a smile) and they still try. It usually comes in the form of questioning, or them physically trying to help me maneuver. Even when I pull out the "I promise, I'm fine thanks" in a firm tone, they still seem to ignore it. Maybe I should start barking like a dog, and embarrass them instead. It was really hard to contain my anger and frustration. I did it because I don't want to burn any bridges for other people who would need and appreciate the help. Just because I've got wheels, or it appears that I might need help it doesn't give ANYONE the right to ignore me, invade my space and not trust that I know what I'm doing. On the flip side of that, there's feeling like a burden. I know I'm not a burden, it's all perceptive. I don't think many people realize how important independence is. It got to the point where I was about to have a little melt-down on the subway platform waiting for the train. This is coming the girl that doesn't really cry, and never cries in public. Ever. And then, there were people saying "God bless you", WTF?! Seriously?! "Oh, that poor girl in a wheelchair"... give me a break!

Today I was talking with a friend who's been trying to convince me to try this new treatment for a while now. There are three reasons why I haven't tried it yet. The first being money, getting the other treatments makes me broke, but they're essential so going without isn't really an option. I also needed to learn to process and accept EDS for what it is, and learn to live differently. The last reason is why I pretty much lost interest today. I know my friend is trying to get me to do this out of concern, but when I feel like I'm being lectured or have to defend my choices, I stop trying to like the idea. It didn't help that I was told that the reason for my wheels is from me getting the chiro,acupuncture and Active Release treatments. Forget the fact that EDS is degenerative and that according to the specialists at the conference, I'm doing everything right. I don't want to have any part of a treatment model that does not involve a multifaceted approach, or puts blame on other treatment providers that have been nothing but effective for me. I pointed out that I was getting frustrated with the conversation and where it was going but I'm not sure I got the message across. 2/2 days where I've felt the need to cry about it. I'm on a roll!

Just after that, I had a friend message me on FB to tell me a story about how they gave up their seat on the bus for someone who had crutches and braces, and how they were doing their part for the differently-abled. Ummm how exactly was I suppose to respond to that? "Do you want a cookie?". Do we really need praise and acknowledgment for being conscience of other people and their potential needs, also for things that we should do everyday anyway? As if being aware you're someone contributing to the universe, isn't good enough. Cookies for everyone!!! I think I should start giving out gold stars.

I'd like to thank my friends who respect my decisions, and let me do things as independently as possible, even if it drives them crazy.

Back to those three words... "Im fine, thanks"
There are good things about it. It shows independence, which is hugely important for us and just about anyone else. It shows we can handle things as they are, and personally, I find that empowering. Lastly, when we're fine, we're not in agony and that my friends, is priceless.

"Someone's opinion of you does not have to become your reality"

1 comment:

  1. This is a great post! I too struggle with EDS and using wheels, and I have many friends who keep telling me "Don't worry, some day you will get better." Um, no I won't. It does help to know I am not the only one out there with problems!