It’s about respect

Please read.

I don’t post this stuff for sympathy. I post to advocate for ALL people with disabilities. I post so everyone knows what it’s like. I mean you all don’t go to disability websites, blogs, Facebook pages etc to learn unless something happens to someone you know or love. Well, guess what, everyone needs to know this stuff so everyone can help to make it better.

If you see someone parked illegally in a handicap space; REPORT IT to the police, not the store. They don’t care. I mean, Walmart changed out a bunch of handicap spaces and made them into spaces for people running in and out to their pharmacy. I get it during Covid when pharmacy employees had to be running in/out to deliver, but now? Lazy people park there so they’re closer to the doors if they’re going to the pharmacy or not plus shopping the entire store so the space isn’t available for an hour. Clinics pharmacies put up those spaces, too, but they only allow parking in those spaces IF an employee is bringing out your medicine. ONLY!!!!!!!!!!!! Can people just stop being SO lazy? 3 of those spots were taken up by vehicles WITH proper handicap parking stuff at Walmart today. GOOD FOR THEM!!!!!!! Show people who SHOULD be able to park there.

If you see youth playing on the electric shopping carts YELL AT THEM EVEN IF THEY’RE NOT YOUR KID! The last 5 times I’ve gone to Walmart there have been NONE available and 4 or 5 of them marked Do Not Use: broken. Target has always had one available or tries to find one for you. Leukens? Usually has some available. Marketplace had one available. NO other stores in town have them. Not sure if Home Depot or Menards or Fleet do, but I’ve never seen any available.

See kids (or asshole adults) pounding the button to open the door electronically or simply standing there repeatedly pushing the button? TELL THEM TO STOP!!!!! Ask them if they know how difficult it is to get in a door using crutches or wheelchair, etc, when those buttons are SO OFTEN broken? Tell them they SHOULD CARE because it will be their grandparents, a family member, or a friend who WILL need those buttons some day.

I understand now why my Mom has been refusing the wheelchair for 25 years. It totally takes away your independence! It causes pain to use! (At least for people with multiple medical disabilities.) And she has a husband to help her.I am lamenting the loss of independence and self-ability (is that a word?) I didn’t want to be in a wheelchair at 52, almost 53. No one does. Being single really doesn’t help. I don’t have a partner to help push a cart so I can roll the chair. Take Aidan with me? Sometimes (OK, a lot) I really just want to get my errands done without worrying how bad his anxiety is at that moment. I just can’t do it without him anymore. I realized that today. Had a momentary crying jag in the car of physical pain and emotional frustration. Then told myself to stop and just accept it.

After the fiasco of trying to get my temporary handicap parking permit (back and forth 3 times to clinic to DVS,) on my crutches; I am in SO much pain now. Plus, slipping on ice on crutches makes your back twist. Not fun. I HATE ice melt crystals due to the impact on the environment but USING IT IS NECESSARY. It’s not just a nice thing to do that very few stores use beyond their front door. You CAN’T use a wheelchair on ice! That’s a whole new concept of “sit and spin.” LOL. Walkers, canes, crutches on ice? ASKING FOR PEOPLE TO HAVE A BAD FALL. Please ask your stores to use ice melt on their sidewalks and maybe even around handicap parking spaces.

Walk Safe This Winter – Newsletter – Orofino Physical Therapy

ALSO, snow/ice from shoes/boots tracking in/out of stores NEEDS TO BE WIPED UP ASAP!!!! I almost wiped out slipping on my crutches on melted “water” at 3 places today. Businesses in northern states should just KNOW that once the sleet and snow falls they need to have at least one employee on each shift mopping up water all day long. Is it a sucky job, sure, but do you want your customers to come back? Do you want to be sued, or at the very least have to pay for someone’s medical bills? When you’re on Medical Assistance and go to a doctor for an injury they send you a questionairre EVERY TIME asking if you got injured at home or elsewhere. If MA can get out of paying a bill they will go after the place where you got hurt – even a friend’s or family member’s home.

I'm scared to go outside because my crutches slip on all this rain, ice and

Honestly, people still stare???!!!! I thought people had got passed the whole staring at someone in a wheelchair. I’ve never had SO many people openly gawking at me and talking about me until today (that I know of, tee hee. Let’s not think back to some of my hair color choices.) I was pushing a cart while wheeling the wheelchair. OMG must stare at that person!!! No, it wasn’t easy. Do you KNOW how difficult it is to go around corners with one hand? I was doing pretty good. Had the cart hooked on the front joint of the foot steps of the chair so I could go in straight lines. Not too bad. Had to lift the cart off every time I had to turn a corner. I saw 3 other people in wheelchairs, but they had grandchildren or husbands pushing their carts. 3 other people asked if they could help me. ALL OF THEM WERE AT LEAST 80 YEARS OLD and walking slowly themselves.

Place For People With Disabilities - 'It's Rude Not To Stare' A smart copy  twist on a familiar phrase champions the brilliant athletes competing in  the Paralympic Games #paralympics #games | Facebook

I had SO MANY more people push their carts out in front of me or walking out in front of me making me have to suddenly stop. PEOPLE ARE JUST SO RUDE AND UNCARING! Even at the self-checkout the Walmart employee just stood their and watched my struggling to check and bag my groceries. All my 5 items. Grrrrr. What are they being paid for anyway?

A poem i wrote. (C) SJB #disability #disabilities #poem #poetry  #poetsofinstagram #SJBpoetry | Writing groups, Words, Poetic quote

There were nice moments. When I got stuck between the door to the milk jugs and my cart a lady stepped in to help. When I was leaving the store pushing the cart with my chair a young man who had already entered the store turned around to help me get to my car. He said his grandfather had been in a chair. He understood. Then when I was lifting the chair unstably into the car the elderly lady in the car next to me came to help. With my feet in so much pain my balance is shot to hell.

17 tips for talking to and acting around a person with a disability - Rare  Gems Blog

Maybe it’s due to growing up with a disabling disease that most family members had. Maybe my parents just raised us better. My siblings and I ALWAYS stop to ask if someone needs help. We hold open doors. We reach for items for others. Common courtesy is gone. Now people would rather video you on their phone and laugh. People with disabilities just have to think outside the box and figure out how to do things on our own in a world built for healthy physically fit people obsessed with themselves.

Common Courtesy by Steve Gergley - FICTION on the WEB short stories

Put A Fork In Me

Um, ya. It’s supposedly the first day of Spring in 10 days. We got 6 more inches of snow up here in the Nort’land in the last 24 hours. Supposed to get more on Wednesday. Yup. This IS Spring for us. Mm hmm. We’ve all had about enough now, though. Really. We give up. This winter of the 2018-2019 season has been a doozy. We. Are. Done.

I live in Minnesota. This is not what you would call the normal winter for us, but it’s close. Yes, we always have snowy winters. Yes, we always have cold winters. However, this winter has been ridiculous. The usual would be some parts of MN getting a lot of snow and some parts getting the usual amounts and some parts less. Over the last 20 years or so, due to Climate Change, the norm has been less snow and MAYBE 5 or so days of minus 40 below zero degrees Fahrenheit temperatures without the wind chill.

Oh, SO not this year. THIS year decided to blow us for a loop. This year decided to remind us just what a MN winter used to be. This year decided to remind us what it means to be a hearty Minnesotan. This year decided we needed to remember why Babe the Blue Ox is Blue and why Paul Bunyan is so friggin tall.

Paul’s tall so he can see over the damned snow banks and Babe’s blue because it’s 55 degrees F BELOW F*CKING ZERO! That’s 75 F below zero with the wind chill for you warm people who never had the balls to step foot in this frozen hell. Yep. It really got that darn cold this winter. More. Than. Once. Consequences? Extreme cold blamed for 17 deaths in the Midwest thanks to the polar vortex. (www.weather.com) That was early on in December. We still had 2 more months of polar temps to go.

Aaaand just how much snow did we get this year, you ask? Well, I’m 5 feet 1 inch tall. The snow piled on the sides of my driveway is over my head. When I have to leave my driveway I inch my way out VERY carefully and very slowly to make sure no one is coming down the road that I can’t see, and who can’t see me hiding behind the snow pile. It’s like a game of hide and peek; to see all the cars doing the same thing coming out of the other driveways. There are places in MN where they got 6 1/2 feet of snow.

Of course we can’t JUST have the snow. We get freezing slushy icy slippery messes that cause wonderful driving conditions. We started the season in October with freezing rainstorms that left slick layers of ice covering everything. I had just paid $100 to ready my snow thrower for the season. I never got to use it. It remains out in the yard, frozen to the spot where I unloaded it the same day and we got hit by an ice storm that night. Heavy snow and slushy conditions were blamed for 3 fatal Midwestern accidents before December had ended. Now that MN body shops are breaking out the bubbly, we finally have warmer temps in sight. We should be celebrating, right?

With 40 degrees Fahrenheit expected within the week you would expect us to be celebrating. Not yet. With trepidation, now we must haul sump pumps down into our basements and lie in wait. It’s coming. Remember I said another storm is coming on Wednesday? It might be snow. It might be rain. Most likely it will be a mix of both, then freeze solid after the sun goes down. The Big Melt is coming. When you have this much snow and ice sitting on the frozen ground where is it going to go? They say 1 to 2 inches of rain is possible in places. Where is all this liquid moisture going to go? Exactly where is the glacier in my yard going to go?

Storm drains in the streets have snow and at LEAST an inch or two of ice covering them. Driveways? Even if you’ve been diligently shoveling or plowing them after each snow or ice storm, driveways are still covered with several inches of frozen tundra. Houses have snow packed up the outside walls several feet high. Except for the places smart people have hopefully dug out around the pipes and things that vent toxic fumes and things out of their houses. I know I can’t open my front door due to the snow comes up about 3 feet high. Ya, my boy was lazy and never shoveled the steps. So, ya, um…all this snow and ice so close to the houses is going to go…where? You guessed it! Right into your basement! Fun, right?

I don’t have a sump pump.

Here’s the latest report I’ve read and why I think I might be screwed: “The snowpack over the entire upper midwest remained in place or increased over the past two weeks. The amount of snow water equivalent in this snowpack is in the upper 10 percent of historical records over a widespread area…leading to high flood potential for many river basins in the area. At least half of our forecast points now indicate at least a 50% probability of reaching major flood stage.”

I don’t personally live ON the lake. I live about 4 to 5 blocks away from Lake Bemidji. I’m very happy that the lake is wayyyyy downhill. However, I have many family and friends who live on or near the 11,842 lakes and 92,000 miles of rivers, streams, and wetlands in MN. I’ve seen the Mighty Mississippi at flood stage. She IS mighty indeed. The town I live in, well the river flows through us. We are called “the first town on the Mississippi.” We are “sister” cities with New Orleans; the last city on the Mississippi. The headwaters of Ole Miss begins 35 1/2 miles from us. So, yes a lot of the snow and ice will go to feed her, along with all the water from 31 other states.

Right now though, I just don’t want all the frozen white stuff to go into my basement. I’m tired of “hide and peek.” I’m tired of sliding around on the ice, on my tires and on my feet. I’m SO very tired of being c’c’c’cold. My checking account is wondering where my money went. (All to heating costs!) Worst of all, though, my poor old body just wants to curl up into the fetal position and yell, “NO MORE, PLEASE?!” I live with a genetic disabling rare disease that causes chronic pain and the cold of this winter has exacerbated all that pain and increased it to monumental proportions. I’ve tried to help with shoveling and it hurts! I’ve fallen on the ice and it hurts! I can’t afford to turn up the heat and it hurts! I’ve been stuck in the snow so many times and have dug and slid and sug and slid and it hurts! Now flooding is coming? Ah, c’mon?!

Put a fork in me, I’m done!

 

Addendum as of 3/14/19: All this liquid has decided it wants to be inside my house via the basement. Spent 5 hours in the middle of the night using the wet/dry vac. I had just taken my folder of warranties/instruction manuals for various items out to look for something last week and just left it on the floor. MY bad. Now all those papers are spread out all over the place left to dry out. 6′ x 5′ area rug ruined. As things dry I’ll see what else is ruined.

NOT a happy camper.