I thought that I should take a moment to share with you folks what I have learned regarding the complexities of spinal cord injuries and disorders.
I work with an organization that advocates on behalf of people with spinal cord injury. Some of our members have been injured in accidents and others have degenerative spinal cord disorders.
Over the past two years I have overseen many webinars where the various types of issues a person with spinal cord injury/disorders (SCI/D) confront. I have learned more than I’d ever want to know about SCI/D. The topics we’ve covered range from getting the right type of wheelchair to maintaining sexuality after a spinal cord injury.
I’ve developed a much greater understanding of what these folks deal with on a daily basis. And with that understanding, I’ve developed a high level of respect for the resiliency and adaptive capabilities that these individuals demonstrate on a daily basis. Many of us do not know what goes into caring for and living with a person dealing with SCI/D, and it’s not as simple as just sitting in a wheelchair. There are so many more things that are involved, from waste removal, to protecting your skin, and obviously transportation. You have no idea how complex a world this is.
Due to all that I’ve learned, I have a great appreciation for what companies like mine and others like us do to make living with SCI/D more comfortable. Some of the ways that you can help (other than donating money) is by simply obeying the disability parking and other laws that are in place to benefit these folks. Just cause you don’t know, doesn’t mean that those laws and facilities don’t make a major difference to someone’s life. Like I said, I had no idea, but now I do.
I’ll give you an example, let’s take for instance a disability parking spot. One complaint that I’ve heard from able bodied people is “Why is it so damn big? It’s wasted space.” Well, is it? Let’s say you have a quadriplegic, and he/she is riding a motorized chair, how do you think they exit their vehicle? There is a sliding door, and then a ramp comes out, and the passenger then exits via the ramp. How would they exit if your car was right on top of theirs? Get it? See, now you can’t say that you don’t know! There’s so much more, but that’s just a quick example for you to consider the next time you are about to complain about a parking spot.
Growing Up Bronx
Please note the date on a post as it may be an old viewpoint. I keep old posts to show my evolution. The opinions and views expressed here are solely those of the author.