I stopped at Whole Foods this morning to grab a few Gluten & Casein Free items for my son, but all the handicapped spots were taken. Let me start by saying that I don't always use these spots because there are many individuals with more severe disabilities than me that might need them. Whether or not I take a handicapped spot all depends on the weather; how my leg feels on a given day; and whether I am shopping with my little ones (walking in the parking lot is unsafe because I can't catch the kids if they try to run away and they don't know to stop - parking as close to the door as possible is best).
Today was one of those not-so-rare days when my leg wasn't fitting so well & therefore was uncomfortable and less stable (I stumbled several times this morning before I even left the house). I wanted a handicapped spot to reduce the amount of walking I would have to do but there weren't any available. I went ahead and parked and did my shopping. On my way out of the store I saw a woman get into her car, which was in a handicapped spot. I was furious. I couldn't see anything wrong with this woman except that she was quite overweight. Get ready 'cause here comes my rant...
It is amazing to me how many people have handicapped plaques because they are overweight. I don't care if this is "politically incorrect," but obesity should not earn you a handicap spot. Except for extremely rare glandular conditions, obesity is self-inflicted and completely curable. Step one: park a few spots back in the lot and WALK. I'm not trying to be mean, but these spots should be reserved for people with real disabilities. When I first lost my leg and the doctor said he would write a prescription for a handicapped plaque for me, I was horrified. I said I wasn't going to be using it...I was proud and naive. I quickly realized that there were times when parking close to the door was necessary (plus, lets be honest...I should get some perk after lugging around this metal leg day after day).
But it doesn't stop there! What about elevators? The level of laziness in our society is ridiculous. Stairs are a big challenge for me, but impossible for someone in a wheelchair. During my six months of chemotherapy I was in a wheelchair, unable to have a prosthetic leg. For our anniversary Bill and I visited the Tower City Center in downtown Cleveland, so that I could get out of the house for the day. As we approached an elevator a family stepped in and Bill yelled: "hold the door." The family just stared at us as Bill quickly pushed me towards the elevator. As the doors began to close without any assistance from the elevator occupants - Bill hollered: "Thanks for nothing!" In that instant I felt so devalued. Here were able-bodied people who were given the opportunity to help me and they were just too lazy.
O.K. I'm done ranting...for tonight