Last Friday we went to see the Ottawa Redblacks beat the Hamilton Tiger-Cats at TD Place Stadium – it was a great time. We met tons of fun strangers and got to hang out with some of my coworkers while we (barely) watched the game.
We had no plans to attend the game until a few hours before it started. My friend Coleen said she had tickets but was going to skip out since she was sick. She was going to ask her friend if I could have her tickets. Then Jess texted me and said her work was giving away two tickets to the game if we wanted them. I didn’t see the text for 10 minutes and replied saying, “YES! Get the tickets! If you are ever offered free tickets to anything just take them without asking me!” Not too long after, my friend Brigitte said she had two extra tickets to the game if we needed them. It was like we were meant to go to this football game.
The weekend prior, I was playing a practice game before our flag football playoffs had begun, and I severely sprained my ankle. I’ve had ankle sprains growing up, but this one was something else. When it happened, I heard a pop, or a crunch, or a crack and instantly knew something bad had happened. After going to urgent care the following morning, x-rays showed it was normal – other than being double in size and not being to walk on it without a duct-taped stick which acted as my cane. My boss even had a blinged-out cane she brought in for me to use at work, bless her.
A few days after I got the foot injury, my employer asked me to go through some training materials and one of them was about working to accommodate people with disabilities – whether they be clients, candidates, colleagues, or anyone outside of work too. I learned that the proper terminology is “people with disabilities” rather than “disabled people” – put the people before the disability they say. The videos taught me proper lingo, do’s and don’ts (such as not petting seeing eye dogs), and that somewhere around 30-40% of people experience a disability at some point in their lives. A disability can be temporary or permanent, severe or subtle, and can affect every aspect of your life or almost have no impact on your day to day.
While reading the materials, it was much easier to be empathetic because I currently had something affecting me. Whether a temporary injury a disability or not, you sure only seem to notice that you are unhealthy if something is lacking from your norm. You never seem to notice how healthy you feel when you are 100%. It’s easy to forget how good you have it unless something is taken away.
It’s kind of like being grounded as a kid. Don’t be a little shit, be grateful, and be good so you can keep playing Xbox as much as you’d like.
Always remember to appreciate your good fortune, and to all the adults out there, keep yourself healthy so you don’t lose your Xbox time.