NO FEELINGS

Despite that fact that it’s 2014, and we’re no longer living in an era where we hide away children who have disabilities or challenges or are different, I was recently asked by a woman if I thought it was right for me to be taking my beautiful, smart, funny, wheelchair bound son out in public!

It still infuriates me despite having had some time to process it and to calm down. It also deeply saddens me that someone, anyone, takes this view. I try to wrap my head around her intention and while I suspect it comes from ignorance, it also came from a place where she (wrongly) thought she was initiating a protective skew on my exposing my son to scrutiny or judgment.

Part of me worries that there is a populous that will never be comfortable or accepting of people who are different. It’s hard to escape this reality. I’d be lying if I didn’t acknowledge that I see people secretly and not so secretly checking out my son. I see mothers shush their curious children and sweep them past us. When it’s convenient, I gently call them out, inviting the children to say HI or to ask questions.

I’m proud of my son. He’s an amazing kid who has faced challenges all of his life and still manages to lead what most would agree is a pretty normal life. He may do something in his own way, but it’s never stopped him from trying new things or pursuing interest. I want people to understand that just because some is different doesn’t mean that they’re not also very much the same.

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