Do You Identify With Being ‘Disabled’?
I am still enjoying the beautiful Hawaiian Islands and soaking up every ounce of sunlight, breath of ocean air, fresh cup of coffee and lots of seafood. I am filled with gratitude and just so thankful that I’ve been able to come here, despite living with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF).
As we were driving around the island of Oahu today, my friends and I stopped in at various lookout points to see the scenery and beautiful ocean views. Understandably, lots of other tourists are here too and sometimes the parking lots can be quite full, requiring a lot of walking for me to reach a destination. One of the friends with me today asked if I have (or brought) a disability parking spot, and it got me thinking. I hate to admit it, but I’ve not yet applied for this, despite getting short of breath when walking long distances without my oxygen. It is on my to do list someday soon, but here’s the thing: there are still many days that I feel so good, I don’t identify with being disabled or having a disability.
Sure, a disability parking pass would make things a lot easier for me sometimes so is the answer that I obtain one and just use it only during more difficult days (ie. extreme cold/hot temperatures)? It might be. Then I got thinking about many of our wonderful forum members and wondered if any of you identify with being disabled since your IPF/PF diagnosis? I still, thankfully, have many moments (such as the photo above) where I just feel like I don’t “fit the mould” of having a disability, despite my lungs functioning so poorly compared to others my age.
I’m curious: how many of you would say you identify with a disability?
Why or why not?
Do you have a disability parking pass, or do you plan on using one in the future?
Please share your thoughts!
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