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When you are disabled sometimes you will need help with most basic task because your disability may limit your ability to do something well. It is frustrating that I sometimes struggle with the simplest things that comes easy to able-bodied people and get so annoyed when people complain about doing things that I have never had the ability to do because I would love to be able to exercise without having to worry if my exercise routine is accessibility. The things I can do I am grateful for because not everyone with my disability or any other physical disability is able to function at the same level I do and may need help with things that I can do independently. Some things in life come easy come easy for able-bodied people and are what disabled people would call as privileges because not all of these things are possible with disability and if it is it’s much more difficult. In this post, I am going to talk about everyday things that are easy for abled people that you may take for granted because it’s impossible for some disabled people.
Doing whatever exercise routine you want- Most people do not enjoy exercise and only do because it benefits your health and will constantly complain about how much they hate exercise. Exercise is a privilege, and you don’t have exercise but get to exercise because for some disabled people lifting weight is not possible. As a disabled person I am grateful that my disability does not completely prevent from exercising but is harder to find a exercise routine when you are disabled because fitness is not accessible and not all exercises are possible with my disability. Able-bodied people sometimes don’t realize how good they have it when they go to gym because you don’t realize how much of a privilege exercise is until you are severely limited or can’t exercise at all. As a disabled person my biggest pet peeve is when people get on social media and brag about how fit they are because not all disabled people are able to get super ripped biceps like able- people can and would love to do just five minutes of any exercise routine.
Having a bowel movement and it working every single time- Most people wouldn’t think of pooping as a privilege, but it totally is because for some disabled people it can be a serious struggle to have a bowel movement and take three times as long. As a disabled person I envy people that can sit on the toilet and have a bowel movement in under five minutes, and it work every single time because that will never be the case for me. My bowel regimen works most of the time and most times I can usually have a bowel movement and shower within an hour but when it doesn’t work it can cause me lot of pain and I can end up spending five hours trying to poop. I only have bowel movement twice a week but during those two days I probably spend more time in the bathroom than an abled person would spend all week. It is a privilege to have bowels that work properly because you will never experience the pain of severe constipation and understand the fear of not being able to go the bathroom.
Cleaning your house without needing help– Some able-bodied people hire cleaning services because they are busy and don’t have a lot of time to do it themselves but could if they wanted to. As a disabled person with a physical disability, I am able to tidy up my room and make my bed, but I could not do a deep clean of my house by myself because I can’t do things such as mopping and sweeping my floors and requirement assistance to do things. Busy able-bodied people sometimes will pay a cleaning service to clean their homes, but for a lot of disabled people it’s necessary because even if you are able to clean your floors sometimes it takes longer and someone without your disability could do a better job. As a disabled person if I lived alone, I wouldn’t need someone to wipe down my counter-tops for me, but I wouldn’t be able to save money by not hiring a cleaning service because there are some things I cannot do. It is privilege to be able to clean your hours without assistance because for some disabled people it may be too physically challenging, or you may experience pain and not have the energy.
Being able to drive yourself to the store- Most of the things I buy I order online because I can’t drive myself to the store and don’t actually remember the last time I have been in a physical store. I can’t drive and if I were to need something that I couldn’t find online I could tell my mom and she would get it for me, but I could not get in my car and pick it up myself like most can. Shopping is a privilege for me because it’s not every day that I get to leave my home and buy things I probably don’t need.
Wearing perfume without triggering migraine- Before chronic migraine I was that person who would wear as much perfume as I could because it can help cover up a stoma problem and never realized how much of privilege it is to wear perfume and not get a headache until I started experiencing pain and had to wear less scented products just so I can function. I don’t understand people that are able to coat themselves in scented products and not trigger a headache because I could never do that and have to be very generous with the amount of perfume I am wearing.
Being able to dress yourself- When you are disabled sometimes it can be difficult to put on a pair of pants because you may have leg braces to consider or are not able to move as easily. My disability makes dressing myself take a little longer, but I can because when I was younger, I went through tons of therapies that taught me necessary life skills such as dressing myself and I am I am able to dress myself without assistance. Most people with Spina Bifida may take longer to get dressed but should be able to dress themselves but not all disabled people have that ability and sometimes you may be completely dependent on others to change your outfit. It is a privilege to be able to dress yourself because not all disabled people can and have to hire someone to help with those things which is necessary but can make some people uncomfortable.
Working a job of your choice– Able-bodied people that put in the hard work often can choose whatever career appeals to them but for disabled people it’s not that simple. It is a privilege to be able to work your dream job because some disabled people can’t work the career, they are most interested in because it’s too physically demanding and have to choose career based on their abilities which is not always your first choice. I know tons of disabled people who hate their jobs because they are under-paid and have to work a job they don’t really like. Working and not being limited to how much money you can make is privilege that a lot of disabled people wish they had. Many disabled people would love to work their dream but a lot of the time we can’t because our disabilities limit our ability to do that job, or we face so much discrimination in job interviews that we are forced to take the first opportunity that was thrown our way.
Disabled people sometimes will find it annoying complain about doing things such as exercising that are impossible with our disability or three times more difficult because at least you have the ability to do them even if you don’t like to. As a disabled person sometimes, I feel privileged when I do things such as lifting weights, because I have disabled friends who can’t workout at all, and I feel so bad about complaining about my workout routine with someone that struggles with body confidence more than I ever will. I could go on forever about all the things in life that are harder for disabled people that could be considered as privileges and my main point isn’t to tell abled people that you should be grateful for everything and that it’s never okay to talk about your struggles with fitness and I only want to help you realize that life is harder with a disability and not disabled people are able to do the things you are bragging or complaining about. What privileges do you think healthy people take for granted?
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