Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Try This Exercise

Able-bodied friends! I would like you all to consider something. Please think about it with focus and not with the cursory attention we typically use to scan the internet.

1) Disability is a social construct. (More on that later.)

2) How many times have you judged someone's worth, even passively, based on limited information of nebulous origin, and then distilled it into "inspiring" or "pitiful" or "scary"?

2) What would you do if you were suddenly unable to live your life the way you're currently living it? Say, part of your body suddenly malfunctions beyond repair and you simply...can't. Not "won't", no choice - CAN'T.

An exercise! From the moment you next try to get out of bed, think about how you'd do it. If each of your skeletal muscles won't move when you ask them to, your joints paralyze you with fire at the slightest movement, or your mind is padlocked against your will and refuses to engage outside of itself; think about the sheer amount of energy it might take (physically, mentally, and emotionally) just to get out of your bed. Now, move through every miniscule step of your daily routine with this intention.

How's that grip on your toothbrush? Do you need help zipping your pants or getting into your shirt? Can you type today? Can you have a conversation on the telephone? Can you get to a meeting on an upper floor of a building that has no elevator? Is it easy for you to get to the bathroom and into a stall by yourself at work? Can you use the kitchen in the same way? Can you get through the doors in every building by yourself with ease? Can you easily step off the curb and get across the street before the light changes? Have you had tears in your eyes all day and little support from people who don't understand why today is so different from yesterday? Are you just trying to live your life like everyone else?

This list could be infinitely longer, but you get the idea.

Please share your results!

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