>A Letter Unsent

>Dear you,

I know you’ll never read this and even if you did you wouldn’t understand it. But sometimes a girl’s just gotta get some stuff off of her chest.

If I need help I will ask. Don’t just stick your hand on my side without saying a word and then act all offended when I ask what you’re doing. Don’t assume that there’s a chance I’m going to fall as I’m transferring and that you putting you hand on my side just above my hip will prevent that happening. It’s just really rude, really off putting and substantially increases the chances that I actually will fall!

I know from a previous experience we had that you’re just trying to be helpful and that you don’t get it. I kept my cool this time.

Last time made you think I had an “attitude problem” I know and I couldn’t be bothered to deal with it this time. I couldn’t really be bothered to deal with you. Looking back I probably should have snapped at you to “get your hands off of me!” when you grabbed my wheelchair and tried to take over. But you know what, there are plenty of things I can’t do – let me do the things I can. And even more importantly in that case, my Quickie tips incredibly easily, I couldn’t take the risk of you reaching around and pushing me from where you were sat as you were. I didn’t want to hit the floor.

Thanks for going “what’s she done, what’s she done?” when you saw me and S talking to a first aider this afternoon. And even more thanks for going “she’s cut her foot!” to every other person in there when S told you. It was just a tiny bit of blood and no big deal for a toe walking CPer like me. Quick antiseptic wipe and a plaster and i was good to go. Getting it blown out of proportion like that was really annoying and difficult too.

If you must ask none of your business questions ask me! You tell me you’ve been a carer longer than I’ve been alive. You have relatives who use wheelchairs, I know one of them. Personally I thought this would be obvious to you but obviously I was wrong.

Please, difficult as it is for you, leave me to ask for help. And if I do ask, help me exactly as I say. Because if i ask for an arm to lean on whilst standing and you pull me from sitting to standing chances are I’m going to lose my balance (or not get it in the first place) and you might hurt me. I could plunk back into my chair instead of transferring or I could fall. Even more importantly you might hurt yourself.


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