Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Me ... I`m fine.

I no longer understand a simple question.

It seems like I have to run the question through a particular filter and then provide an answer to a question unasked.

`Wow,`was the response when I was telling a friend about my travels this month. They are extensive and I`m all over the place doing all sorts of things. We won`t be home except for a couple days in October. I like what I do, but I admit it`s tiring a fact which my friend picked up on and said. `That must be so hard on you, all the travel and the hotels and the restaurant food - I`d hate it. Don`t you get really tired.`

My answer, once I got started was about travelling with a wheelchair and about the access issues and about the attitudes we encounter. I stopped because I could see I was annoying her. `I didn`t ask for the disabled Travellers Chronicles,`she said, `I asked how YOU were doing. Just you.`



As separate from my chair.

Just me.

She gets that there are issues with travel.

But she wanted to know how I was doing. How I was handling the travel stresses, not the ones that come with disabilities, but the regular ones. Stress in travel isn`t just a disability issue is it.

Sometimes people are asking just about that stuff.

I`m not sure it all can be separated out, I`ll have to think about that.

But it was nice to be asked.

About me.


Kristine said...

I get and appreciate the question. It's nice when someone asks to see behind the usual public shtick and know how you're really, truly, individually doing.

But when it comes to travel, I can't separate the disability stress from the travel stress. It's all the same package. And frankly, I have a hard time listening to non-disabled people talk about travel stress. I feel like they don't know the first thing about it. Long waits, missed connections, lost luggage, food on the road, hotel beds, etc just don't feel like real problems to me. Not when you know perfectly well that you're going to eventually arrive perfectly safely to your destination, and you'll be able to freely use any and all facilities/services along the way, without even thinking about it.

I don't mean to be that person, the one who demeans other people's problems. And I always am sympathetic to people complaining about these things; we all need to vent about life's annoyances sometimes. But there's always a little piece of me wishing those were the kind of problems I could spend my worry points on.

Anonymous said...

I'm with Kristine. I'm sure the comment was well meant but I don't feel it was well said.
If your experience of travel is dominated by experiences related to disability, that's your experience, I can't see that there's another experience aside from your experience as a disabled person.
Maybe there's a comment that goes, what about the stuff that bothers me when I'm travelling? Doesn't that bother you too? And then there is Kristines comment above, it's a privilege that I don't enjoy to have headspace to evaluate and even stress about food on the road.
That's my take on what I've read here.

Anonymous said...

A breath of fresh air, to be asked about you as a person rather than you as a disabled person.