Written by Deborah Jordaan
Good day to all the beautiful souls that support our page. You make me feel like I am making a difference even if it is just one person that finds a light at the end of the tunnel because of the words I write. Today I am going to write about the daily challenges paraplegic people face out in the world where their needs are not always met from proper paraplegic parking- to bathroom facilities in the public.
As you all know my partner lost part of his leg last year and is still recovering. Luckily I do nursing so I take care of him. I have never noticed how insensitive a human is till their needs changed. Some places accommodate him but few and far between.
Then you get these people that park in paraplegic parking because they are just too lazy to walk a few more steps to where they need to get, not to mention people on the road that get frustrated with the speed he drives. His car is modified so he can still have the freedom of driving.
My heart bleeds for the paraplegics that do not have proper transport or live in sanitary conditions. They may have wounds that need cleaning and their situation may be that they live in a squatter camp or area where water and electricity are not available. That is why it gets to the point where they lose more of the limb because of sepsis or any other condition. I ensure my partner is clean, fed and warm in bed before doing anything for myself.
We made many friends when he was in Baragwanath Hospital and I wish I could help them but unfortunately, it is not always possible.
When you see a paraplegic person be kind to them, remember they may have been like you and suddenly their life changed in a second. Remember a paraplegic person still has an intelligent mind and they have not changed they just have a body that changed.
Then you get the people that cannot face the paraplegic after they lost a limb or any other body problem. My partner’s brothers have never seen him after his operation, their excuse is they feel bad seeing him like that.
What nonsense, they act like they are the victim whereas my partner never feels like a victim. To me, his family feels bad facing him because they never visit him and they never went to see him in hospital.
Never treat a paraplegic like a paraplegic, they are still a human just a bit different.
Look at the amazing Albert Lin that works for national geographic, nothing holds him back. He goes on amazing adventures and has done things that able-bodied people have never done. Paraplegics have children and have beautiful family lives. Able-bodied people can learn a lot from paraplegics in regard to daily living. We take for granted that we can walk outside, jump and run. They wish they can just walk without a challenge.
Next time you say you do not feel like doing anything and that you feel down, think about what the paraplegic feels like every day. Just appreciate your life and when you see a paraplegic person try and be helpful to them.
Be blessed and be safe.