Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Week 29- GBE 2---TRUTH

The TRUTH about the holiday season is that there are more people than most of you realize that need assistance. I know myself as a paraplegic that attempting to go out for groceries or Christmas shopping can be so overwhelming, a lot of the time I just don't do it.

I spent many years having to defend my "QVC QUEEN" title by friends and family members. I have like many of you been on a tight budget.Folks just didn't get it. I am sure they thought I was being extravagant. TRUTH of the matter is, I was being practical. I would try to make light of it, but it hurt. It was much easier to pick up the phone, call an 800 (free!) number and  place an order. Sometimes I would even luck out and they would wrap up the gift for me with a tag giving the recipient my loving regards. Not to mention they would mail the package to the person directly...saving me the much dreaded trip to the post office or local parcel delivery companies long lines...most of the time without proper seating for waiting customers, such as myself, who couldn't stand that long in line.

Not all of us have someone who is willing and/or available to go along with us to get those errands done. If most people are like me, I'll ask once, if I get the least bit of eye rolling, excuses that I know aren't legit or the "I'm really busy but MAYBE next Wednesday I can work you in"... I will not ask again. PERIOD. I'm done with it. I'll figure out myself.

The same goes for holiday decorations. If I had a dime for everytime I asked someone to come by and help me (which is hard enough for me to do in the first place) to have them 1. Not show up 2. Call with a pretty lame excuse 3. Or basically tell me they have their own houses to tackle...yep I've been told that. It can put a pretty big damper on the Christmas decorating spirit, especially when those same people are the ones that say that famous line "if you need anything, just call". They don't realize how many times they have left me frustrated because I CAN'T DO IT and in tears. Decorating just isn't worth that kind of depression.

Let's talk a little about handicap parking and those waiting lines to check out. I know that most of you have noticed that not everyone who is parking in those little blue lines seems to be in the least bit disabled. I've seen it many times. Someone borrows grandma's car so that they can get that great spot up front and get to their shopping. What they don't seem to consider is that we the physically disabled hold tightly to our independence, you take that spot, it puts a halt to our independence. Even if you do have a placard and you are able to walk, how about just for this time of year (okay most of the year if I'm honest) take that spot just a few more cars down and allow the people that really could use that spot to utililize it. It would be a bigger blessing than you can imagine. As for check out lines, how many of you have stopped long enough to look at the people behind or in front of you, if they are in one of the scooters chances are MOST OF THE TIME they could use some help unloading that cart and loading it back up. If you can...it would be a super big blessing to walk outside with them and help them get things in their vehicles. We have just as much trouble getting those "helpers" at the big stores to show up when they are needed! You will make a shopping experience much more light hearted for people such as myself and along the way prove my theory that there ARE good people out there in the world.

Maybe this year you could call an elderly or disabled person and ask if they need any help shopping, I know from first hand experience many stores don't have wheelchairs or electric carts and many of us just aren't physically able to push a shopping cart, so we don't go. Also watch for a person who is disabled who might be looking up on a shelf, chances are an item is out of their reach. Also in the freezer section those doors can be a hassle to keep open while we try to retrieve an item. It won't hurt to ask if they need help! You know that saying don't you? A blessing given comes back ten fold. Believe it!

I hope you will really see what I've written here and apply it to your lives...everyday lives. It could change a person's life such as myself, not to mention yours! Thanks for stopping by and spending some time with me. Remember always that you are important and you are loved! Have a great week my friends!


  1. Does the phrase "eye opener" mean anything to you? Wow, great and informative and I am so glad you wrote and posted this! I always worry that if I offer to help, the person will think I see them as helpless, which I do not. Thank you, I will most definitely keep this in mind when I run into a situation that might be made easier with the use of my reasonably capable arms, legs or hands.
    As far as the shopping thing? I do 99% of my shopping on line because I don't WANT to go shopping. I think it rocks that you can just clickity click and wait for the UPS truck! If only I could get groceries in this town on line. I swear, I would be the first shopper if our little grocery went with the click and deliver service.
    Again, fantastic post.

  2. Hey Jo my sweet friend. Sometimes when you ask, we have a bad habit of saying "Oh no thanks, I can handle it" when in fact, it's a hassle. I guess that's called pride. Maybe just smile and say "here, let me help you get all this stuff up here on the belt", then hang around if you can and start loading it up, start a conversation and walk along with the person. I can't express how difficult it is to say those words "I NEED HELP". But in all honesty, most of us do. Thanks for coming by. I sure appreciate your input. BTW, I meant to say I try to make LIGHT of it, not like! OH well! Hugs and love your way. And I agree, groceries via clicky click would be awesome!

  3. I waited for years to have my knees replaced, and while I waited, I learned a great deal about what it's like not to be able to walk down the aisles at the grocery store and just pick up whatever you want. I felt guilty about using handicapped parking spots, and if anything else was available, would not. I figured someone else might need the extra room to unload a wheelchair. But by the time I got to the door of the store, I was sweating and feeling sick to my stomach from the pain. Consequently, I tend to notice when people need a little help. I usually ask, "May I help?" because it really feels like a privilege when I'm able to do so. If you see me in the store before I see you, don't hesitate to ask. I'm the little old lady with the big scars on her knees and the smile on her face.

  4. What she didn’t mention is how many people in this country really don’t care about the wheelchair in front on in back of them. Not only do they not care but they will go to another line, cross the road to avoid and even worse accuse you of using the wheel chair as a weapon… A what you ask? A weapon that’s what I said and not only that they are offended when you tell them to f…. off.

  5. And ask I would. YOU are a dearheart and I'm glad to have you visit my page. Much love to you A!

    PS Glad you finally got those knees done. They can be SO SO SO very painful. Keep going and keep smiling!

  6. That memory of the "weapon" still makes me laugh. I know--- evil of me! Your reaction to her accusation was priceless. I miss you, especially during THIS time of year. Dedicated to you my friend...with love.

  7. Tainatalks, this was a very inspiring post and such an important message, especially during this time of year. I promise to you that during this month, and thereafter, I will look for a physically challenged person that needs help and help them.

    If you lived near me, I would be happy to help you decorate...

    Wishing you Happy Holidays!

  8. You brought some great stuff to light, Tai. One thing, though. Not everyone who needs the handicapped placards has an illness that is obvious to those who might see them leaving their vehicles.

    There are certainly plenty of people who abuse the system and they should be ashamed of themselves, but I know a few people who have gotten yelled at in parking lots by people who see them upright and assume that they are one of those selfish abusers. One friend has RA and though on good days, she can walk a little bit before she is in terrible pain, it is VERY hard for her to make it through a simple shopping trip. She walks in the store fairly okay, but by the time she's gotten a few things in her cart and is making her way out, she's often in awful shape.

    She's been yelled at, sworn at, and has even had a few people get right in her face as she heads into the grocery store. It's so bad that most of the time, she has her husband drive her to the store, drop her at the door, then park in a regular spot while she waits for him to join her inside. She says that the loss of independence that her illness has taken is the hardest thing of all.

  9. Beth, I do understand your point and I should have included this exception in my blog. I myself have several friends with illnesses that to the naked eye, they seem healthy-but they aren't. If in doubt of the legitimacy of the person in question, they can be asked to present the ID that is issued to each person that has a rearview mirror placard or a handicap license plate (the placard/license & ID numbers match). If the person is legitimate, they should have that ID on them. No person should EVER yell at another, especially in this type of situation. It is uncalled for. My heart just ached to read that your friend has been treated so badly that it has resulted in her husband having to drop her off and park elsewhere.

    Give your friend a hug for me and tell her to keep her ID placard on her at all times for that "just in case" moment where someone might report her or get mouthy. STAND HER GROUND! Much love to you my friend and THANK YOU for making such a valid point.

  10. Beachlover:

    Thank you for your kind words and your new attitude about shopping! AWESOME! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas as well as a happy and blessed New Year to come!