Today’s post was a surprisingly vulnerable one to write. I have no problem identifying as disabled when I am in the role of disability rights campaigner, but somehow it is surprisingly hard describing how it feels to be viewed as disabled when society, and even church, is prejudiced against disabled people. When She Loves magazine asked me to write for their series, “We are the Other”, about inclusivity and the church, I knew it was too important an opportunity to pass up.
Here’s how it starts:
“What’s her name?”
The airport official spoke over my head to my husband and it took me a while before I even registered she was referring to me.
Why doesn’t she just ask me? I wondered. And then it clicked: it’s because of the wheelchair.
Apparently, the wheelchair I sit in signified to the woman that not only do I have mobility problems, but I am incapable of speech. I felt half-offended, half-amused. At such moments I don’t necessarily think holy thoughts. After all, when you’re sitting in a wheelchair, the person standing in front of you has their crotch at prime head-butting height.
(oh, and I also give Toy Story a mention…!) Won’t you come with me to She Loves magazine and read the rest?