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Fed up being able bodies "inspiration"!!!

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    #31
    There's an inspiration hierarchy.

    CareCure has been around so long that some thread topics have become almost cliche in their reappearance. Of course, the vast majority of people we meet have no clue about what life with a SCI is really like. And I have no idea what's like to grow up in a famine-ravaged African nation. I also have no idea what's like to live in a country that's being torn asunder by civil war with bombs dropping around me. I haven't had cancer (yet) and have been spared abject poverty. The list of shitty things that I can't relate to is seemingly endless and I don't berate myself for not having a more intimate awareness or appreciation of it all.

    We are all to some extent narcissistic creatures. Very few people feel my pain as I experience it, and I'm pretty confident that I'm oblivious to the pain of others. This is not because I'm unsympathetic or lacking for empathy, but because like most people I'm limited by the amount of suffering I can take in before it compromises my ability to function. We're always trying to balance being aware and sensitive to the plight of others while trying not to spiral in despair for how little we can control things outside of our environment and understanding. Seems pretty healthy to me.

    So if someone calls me an inspiration or gives me God's blessings (and I'm an atheist), I don't quibble. It's beats being ignored and or made to be invisible.

    We're all somewhere on the ladder of either being someone's object of inspiration or busy searching for someone to inspire us. Disabled and able-bodied alike, life is a constant struggle. We look to others for guidance, support and reassurance. If someone locates that in me, it's a gift they offer to themselves and I don't begrudge them for it. Intentional or otherwise, it provides a moment (usually very fleeting) of uplift.



    stephen@bike-on.com

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      #32
      Essie- I know you aren't rude. My last post was about 3/4 joking. I like to use sarcasm to lighten the mood. Most everyone on here has my deepest respect (not sarcasm).

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        #33
        When people say say I am an inspiration and the like, I usually say that I am no different from anyone else. We are all dealing with challenges in life. Some are mental, some are medical, some are physical, some are financial, some are emotional, some are educational, some are obvious, some are hidden. My challenges are easy to see. I don't know what your challenges are because I can't see them, but that doesn't make them any less difficult.

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          #34
          I think the OP's point is "I just want to be treated as a regular person; chair or no chair, just a regular person".
          Rollin' since '89. Complete C8

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            #35
            Originally posted by krshirk View Post
            AM I THAT MESSED UP THAT IM THE ONLY ONE WHO FEELS THIS WAY?!
            No, but it's merely a platitude. It's so commonplace, people say it without really acknowledging what he or she means.

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              #36
              Relevant:

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                #37
                I love that My Gimpy Life episode. I think this is spot on to what the OP's point was.
                Rollin' since '89. Complete C8

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                  #38
                  I want to scream "im not f-ing trying to live my life for your benefit (inspiration)! BTW, it would be nice to actually hear from you for once or to have you actually initiate a get together!"-----the OP

                  This is how I felt at family reunions......once folks were shit-faced, I got the inspiration talk. God save me from such butt sucking....I no longer go to family reunions...

                  For the most part, I can tolerate these situations. While at the last Mayhem Fest in Bristow,Va. I got a ton "respect" (my sons' word for it) from the mosh pit crowd. People wanting to take my pic with them, telling me how thier friends/family were messed up and not wanting to be here, etc., etc.... All I wanted to do was be able to see the friggin' band up close.......So, I guess it jus depends on your perspective of how to handle the intentions of others. Perhaps I will mellow as I get older, who knows..

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                    #39
                    I think people just say that because they can't get their mind around surviving being in a wheelchair on their own. I was in a restroom at a restaurant last week and when I came out of the stall a lady was walking in. She had a look of shock on her face and said "oh my, do you need any help"? I said No, I just need to squeeze past you so I can wash my hands. She ran over to the sink and turned the water on. I said "it's ok, I got it. She stood there and stared in "amazement". When I went to open the door she said oh my god, that must be so hard. I said, no, I've had to do much harder things that opening this door. This is just part of everyday life. She said, well bless your heart. You are just such an inspiration......I was totally annoyed with her short obsession with my every move in such a small space but I just smiled and moved on. It's different from their perspective than it is from ours. They are somewhat sheltered and see us on an inspirational pedal stool because they can't fathom having to live life as we do. It's annoying and takes time to educate someone on why we don't like to be called an "inspiration" for simply living our lives.
                    DFW TEXAS- T-10 since March 20th, 1994

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                      #40
                      Originally posted by Lazlo View Post
                      Relevant:

                      Yep, very Relevant, great show.
                      "Life is about how you
                      respond to not only the
                      challenges you're dealt but
                      the challenges you seek...If
                      you have no goals, no
                      mountains to climb, your
                      soul dies".~Liz Fordred

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                        #41
                        Originally posted by Le Type Fran├žais View Post
                        No, but it's merely a platitude. It's so commonplace, people say it without really acknowledging what he or she means.
                        I agree Todd. It is just a commonplace platitude.

                        It can mean different things to different people. Some people might feel "inspired" because they see someone in a wheelchair getting on with their life and wondering if they would be able to cope.
                        People tell Dave he inspires them to not sweat the small stuff and keep a good sense of humor like he does.
                        I am told by people that I inspire them by being a caregiver for someone with as many needs as he have because they don't think they could do it.
                        I say you do what you need to do.
                        It is embarrassing and I usually tell them they would not say that if they saw me having a meltdown or my swearing when I stub my toe on the (^&**# hospital bed wheel.
                        People mean well when they say this even if it does make one grit their teeth.

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                          #42
                          I think Stephen and Ron have the best posts here.

                          I just read "Thunder Dog" by Michael Hingson. He was in the World Trade center on September 11. He is also blind and made it down 78 stories to safety with his guide dog. He doesn't want to be an inspiration either. He says he was just living his life. But for everyone else who does not know or even begin to understand what being blind from birth is, he is a determined individual. The man was raised by parents who never treated him any different than their other sighted children. The neighbors even reported him to his parents for riding his bicycle alone around the block. How could a blind person do that and not get ran over by a car or run into something else?
                          T12-L2; Burst fracture L1: Incomplete walking with AFO's and cane since 1989

                          My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am. ~Author Unknown

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                            #43
                            I hate the compliments for doing normal things. I got on an elevator before facing forwards and then turned around to face the door and someone commented I did that so well. One time I was at a drs appt and the nurse led me from the waiting room to exam room and commented how well I get around. Gee, thanks for noticing my ability to go through a doorway, down the hall, and through another doorway. It means so much to me.
                            Board Member of Assistance Dog Advocacy Project working in Education. Feel free to ask me any service dog questions!

                            I am not paralyzed. I have a genetic connective tissue disorder with neuro complications and a movement disorder.

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                              #44
                              Originally posted by darkeyed_daisy View Post
                              I think Stephen and Ron have the best posts here.

                              I just read "Thunder Dog" by Michael Hingson. He was in the World Trade center on September 11. He is also blind and made it down 78 stories to safety with his guide dog. He doesn't want to be an inspiration either. He says he was just living his life. But for everyone else who does not know or even begin to understand what being blind from birth is, he is a determined individual. The man was raised by parents who never treated him any different than their other sighted children. The neighbors even reported him to his parents for riding his bicycle alone around the block. How could a blind person do that and not get ran over by a car or run into something else?
                              I too am sick of being someones "inspiration" especially given the shape I'm in and being able to to 3x the work!!!!

                              I will have to get that book that sounds um, well, errrh,, what's that word?

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                                #45
                                I'm gonna crack this shit wide open. I signed up to an erotic writing website and I have fully disclosed that I am in a chair, not my name or any pictures of myself (yet??) but I have for the first time admitted it straight out.

                                big deal, you say, well. i tell ya I've had that many people friend me who are in chairs but are loathe to admit it, precisely because they are scared they will get branded inspirational at best or freaks at worst.
                                "The problem with self improvement is knowing when to quit." "Diamond" David Lee Roth.

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