I have never been a great believer in New Year’s resolution the way most people use the idea. I feel like traditional resolutions carry with them the potential for too much guilt. Instead, I’m starting a new project this year. Right now there is no set end date because I’m really not sure where this particular rabbit hole will take me. I’m starting a nonfiction manuscript, Disability Confidential: Real truths about being disabled we’ve been too nice to tell you, that’s the working title anyway. Yes, it will be snarky, yes, it may very well sound harsh to people who don’t live with a disability, so be it. As children, we learn very quickly to downplay or gloss over as many aspects of our disability as possible. It helps us to fit in and make friends. I let my friends and my sister stand on the back of my motorized wheelchair and ride around while I drove. I did this so often that it wasn’t long before they would jump on without asking and if I asked them to get off they then complained that I was suddenly being mean and unreasonable for wanting a little personal space that day instead of being a means of transportation for someone who could easily walk and was just looking for a few minutes of novelty. At the time I was a kid who desperately wanted to have friends so I caved most of the time and let them ride. As an adult, I know what I should have said was closer to this,” my wheelchair is not an amusement park ride which our friendship grants you unlimited access to, it is an extension of my personal space, and I have the right to refuse to carry you, get over it.
See, I told you it was going to be snarky. I plan on posting bits and pieces as I write, and I welome feedback from anybody whether you have a disability or not. A note to my family, I want you to read thid. Over the years I know I’ve had conversations on this topic with some of you but if anything you read in these posts surprises you or is unexpected let’s talk about it. This project isn’t meant to lay blame but to start a dialouge.