A Day In a Life of TBI
Fancy Shoes. Going to dinner I realize I'm wearing dress shoes for the first time in five years. I needed a nice outfit today. People believe that disability comes with a uniform or a stereotypical "look." That using the aid of a scooter or walking with a cane means, you no longer want to be polished or stylish. The judgment is that you shouldn't present yourself to the world all pulled together because it's somehow false or misleading, somehow I'm "less" disabled. If what I put on my back somehow could miraculously make me healthy or be in less pain, I'd buy stock in Armani.
There's also the idea that your clothes reflect your financial state or bank balance. A lot of my wardrobe are relics from when my life was in "feast" mode, right now I'm closer to famine. I had nice clothes before my accident so I don't go out shopping I just wear the clothes that I haven't been able to wear for years because I haven't had a life, being social or working on gaining my independence back moving back to the city where I can grow on my own and learn.
I received a Facebook comment after I uploaded a video of my dad and someone else driving a fire truck in a children's parade. My scooter was strapped to the back of the truck and they lifted me up and I was able be a part of a parade. Before, this was impossible because I was always hurt and I couldn't do anything with the sound and everything so loud–it was a huge benchmark in my recovery. I was in pain but I still did it. I was dizzy as everyone held me up, But no one saw that unless you were actually there. People only want to see what suits them.
In their ignorance, the commenter spoke about me of being wealthy, I guess it was a passive-aggressive way of saying I am an elitist and spoiled. The truth is I'm not financially wealthy, but I am wealthy in my faith and in my relationships. God has blessed me with being able to do the things that I'm doing in my recovery, and I won't let any outside judgment taint that.
Should I feel guilty for not just recovering my health, but my life? Having a disability feels like punishment enough, should I submit myself to a mentality of homelessness, poverty, and hopelessness so everyone else feels comfortable or more willing to accept my life?
Photography By Larisa May #halfthestory , @halfthestory