It is not secret that I have some major health problems. Anyone who sees me even attempt to walk across a crowed room can tell. Talk to me on a phone for to long and you’ll hear it. It has a tangible affect on most people, especially those you may have called friends.
Long talks turn into short greetings. Good times turn into palatable awkward segments of time. And to some degree respect turns to pity. Some freeze up and won’t even chat through email. Others make attempts that are fleeting and far in-between. Even those close to you stop looking at you and remembering what you can do, they look and see only that you can’t. In talking with some that have similar problems as me, I’ve heard the same stories repeated.
Church going people can sometimes be the worst. Somehow on some level its your fault your sick. You lack faith, you sinned, or some other factor unseen caused your problems. It can leave to a solitary walk. A walk down a path of life that others views are forever altered by what they see and think. There lack of comfort drives them from sanity. They forget your human. Not only that you are human, but that you are exactly the same person you were before you got sick.
I think its one of the most inhumane things to do to someone. I cannot walk far on my feet, my legs falter and tire quickly. I cannot always speak with clarity, my mind lacks memory and focus many days. The pain clouds my thinking and it becomes hard to do even simplest of tasks. Things people take for granted are things I long to be able to do, and are things that require serious consideration before trying.
But in all this, I am still me. Through the pain and discomfort, through the weary legs that can barely take me across the room, my faith is still strong. In the midst of the cloudy thoughts and confusion my love for God still stands as strong as it ever has. And my desire to live life to the fullest of my ability still is strong.
Next time you see someone with an illness or disability, try thinking of them as just human. No more, no less.