Mindfully Disabled

Mindfully Disabled

one womanTomorrow I will finish 30 day of meditation on Self Esteem, courtesy of Headspace. It has taken me more than 40 days to get this far, because, quite frankly I didn’t get it.  I didn’t understand what it was that it was trying to teach me, but I was open to possibilities.  Today those possibilities became surety when I finally understood.

Although these days I seem to live is a twilight world, separate from anyone and everyone else most of the time, there are times when I need to make the effort to join the human race. Today I set out to do a little shopping.  After taking some three hours to get ready, I finally arrived at the bus stop. The bus times have recently changed and it appeared that I had recently missed a bus and the next one wasn’t for 15 minutes. That amount of standing still for the average person is no problem at all, it didn’t use to be to me at any rate. However, these days that amount of standing or shuffling causes my joints to stiffen and my limbs to ache.

By the time the bus came along, it would be obvious to anyone that to get on the bus was causing me a few problems, as I moved slowly. Yet this was not the case for the bus driver, for the moment I stepped onto the bus, scanned my disability pass, he set off. I did not think it was necessary to tell him to wait until I had sat down. However, as the bus moved I had to call out to the driver to stop until I was seated, it took me three times getting louder each time, in the end he stopped and a little shaken and upset I sat down.

The bus moved off. At the next bus stop the driver pulled over and got out of his cabin and had a go at me, accusing me of swearing at him and telling me I had no need to shout at him and I should have told him to wait until I was seated when I had boarded. What I had said was ‘please stop until I sit down’ repeated three times. Yes, I had spoken loudly so he could hear me over the engine, but swear, I don’t have swear words in my head.

At first I was upset and felt humiliated, but then I felt angry and by the time the bus pulled I wanted to tell him what for. Yet, my inner self was telling me that ‘sometimes the best thing to do is to remain silent.’ I argued with my inner self, but my inner self continued to repeat the same message. By the time the bus pulled into the station, I had accepted my inner voice and inner mantra had kicked in; ‘I am not my thoughts, my thoughts are not me, what others think of me is not my problem.’ As I got off the bus, which had become busy, I said ‘thank you’ to the driver as I alighted.

Later I was having a friendly conversation with a waitress who was helping me with my food tray and I mentioned to her how I didn’t see disability as a problem until I became disabled. I use to tut as people who sat in disabled seating on the bus and those who use disabled public bathrooms, but I have come to realize that what you see is not necessary what is true.  As humans we make snap judgements often before we even speak to someone.  Today I realized that knowing myself is the best way I can help myself and help others too.

  • Have you ever made a snap judgement that was incorrect?
  • How did you put it right?
  • Did someone make a snap judgement about you?
  • How did you accept it?
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6 thoughts on “Mindfully Disabled

  1. Today a friend shared this quote on FB: It’s easy to judge. It’s more difficult to understand. Understanding requires compassion, patience, and a willingness to believe that good hearts sometimes choose poor methods. Through judging, we separate. Through understanding, we grow. ~Doe Zantamata
    The words have stayed with me throughout the day.

  2. I love that you allowed your mantra to kick in and help ease you through the remainder of the situation. I think we’re all guilty of making a snap judgment at one time or another and have also been recipients of one. When we become aware/remorseful it is a step in the right direction. Sadly, there are people who make judgment a way of life and have no remorse of it…they feel entitled to it.

    1. When someone or something attacks us are first instinct is self preservation, so we attack back. Yet, if the people of the world would learn to pause it could put an end to arguments, anger and maybe even war.

      1. I try to be in the practice to pause rather than immediately act or react. It’s difficult sometimes, but I can tell you it has probably saved me some relationships and pride as well…you know things aren’t always as they first appear, and sometimes if you let a little time pass you aren’t as strongly emotional as you first were.

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