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Clumsiness = Heroism

Well, I’ve got some news for y’all up in this blog. Yours truly? A hero. Not like a super hero…more like, a super duper hero.

Pssh. Amateur.

All this time, I thought falling down those stairs and breaking all those bones made me some kind of dumb klutz…but little did I know, it made me a hero – failure at gravity is actually success in courage. Now, I’m not applying this label to myself; I’ve had this heroism thrust upon me. It started a last week when a friend visited and took me to wander around my hometown’s supermarket. Toward the end of my visit, I decided I needed to use the restroom, so I wheeled my chair on over to the ladies’ room and attempted to cram myself through the thin, maze-like “handicap-accessible” entrance way.

When I saw someone trying to exit at the same time, I tried to scootch over, lodging myself in a corner, essentially stuck. The woman in question looked down at me with eyes overdone with about seventy layers of aqua blue eyeshadow.

Her face was twisted with sadness as she uttered, “You are such a brave woman.”

I’d say wearing that shade was pretty brave.

I wasn’t sure how to take that. It’s not particularly brave to ram your dumb self into a wall and get stuck, but maybe I did it in some impressive way you just had to witness. I smile and thank her as she tugs my chair out from the wall at an angle to let me through.

“So brave,” she repeated. “How long have you been in that thing?” She was referring to my wheelchair.
“About a month,” I answered, “but I”ll be up again in a few weeks.”

She clicked her tongue. “Wow, I just can’t…you are a brave, strong woman. Do you need help with anything? Anything? I really don’t mind!”

Well, folks, we were in a public restroom and she was insisting to help me with anything so you’ll forgive me if my voice got a little panicked and I shooed her away as quickly and politely as I could: no I did NOT need help with anything in a public restroom, strange eyeshadow lady, no, no, no, no, nonono.


So I wrote the whole event off as a lone weirdo mistaking me for a veteran or something.

But then! As my ability to get out and about increases, so do my social demands! Last Sunday, my family took me with them to church, where everyone already knew about my accident. And it happened again! I was called brave, strong, incredible, beautiful, and every one of these adjectives was followed by woman, which is great, because if they hadn’t specified, I never would have guessed.

So as it turns out, all you have to do to get a hero’s treatment is show up in a wheelchair. Maybe people see it as me taking one for the team – statistically, somebody’s gotta wind up in one, and I’m just doing my part to keep them on their feet. How thoughtful.

In this issue, Little Miss Helpful gets cancer so you don’t have to!

I’ve had dozens of people tell me they just couldn’t do what I’m doing; frankly I didn’t know that getting by from day to day was so impossible. That kind of makes me wonder how they’re also dressed, groomed, and in public but hey, it’s a serious thing for someone to admit they can’t face their lives, so I wasn’t going to pick at them.

So admire me, readers, for I am the strong, brave, courageous person who fell down some stairs and now gets around the house and hangs out and does stuff: feats far beyond the capability of any normal human apparently. Don’t applaud. Thanks are not necessary. Cash is just fine.

Paypal is accepted.

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