Since I started my website in April last year I have thought about writing an entry on a specific topic. I have even made a couple attempts but after writing the first couple of paragraphs I would stop myself and tell myself to leave it for another day. However, I was having a discussion about this topic with one of my clients today and he phrased it so well that I decided today’s the day. Today I am going to write about “ordinary people leading ordinary lives” (taken directly from the client).
So many family members, family friends, friends, colleagues, doctors, strangers, etc have commented on how strong I am. They have commented on how impressed they are with all my accomplishments. And without sounding cocky, there are many accomplishments. I always blush, nod my head and say thank you because what else can I say? Sometimes I joke and say “well, you know I am super woman” and people laugh back.
The truth of the matter is that I’m not superwoman. I’m just an ordinary person leading an ordinary life.
Most people I know have completed some form of post-graduate studies, work, have done some travel either within Australia or overseas and most people have moved out of the family home. And nobody bats an eyelid. In fact it’s expected of most people to have done these things or will do these things in the future.
So then, why is it when I do these things, people assume it takes so much strength and can’t believe it?
When I discussed this with my client this morning, I rattled off a list of his achievements:
- He works part-time.
- He studies part-time.
- He lives independently.
- He travels independently.
- He plays sports.
- He has a social life.
In response, he said he’s just an ordinary person leading an ordinary life. He just happens to be in a wheelchair.
Maybe I’m rambling here, maybe it’s the pot calling the kettle black because I was doing the same thing with the client as so many people do to me. And maybe I should just zip it because who doesn’t like being acknowledged and having their ego-boosted.
It’s just that, yes I have accomplished many things, and yes I am proud of myself and yes it’s bloody hard at times, but I’m (and so many other people with a disability) just doing what everybody else is doing.
Living my life.