NB: Sorry if this post has appeared in your reader twice today, or you got an email notification that I’d updated and then it didn’t work. I meant to save the post as a draft earlier and published it by accident when I wasn’t ready. Sorry!
Sometimes it’s the little things in life that take me the longest to do. Doing physical things at speed, walking, going shopping, getting dressed, and things like that can sometimes take me quite a while. I don’t mind though, I just make sure that I leave myself enough time to do things, even if that does mean that I have to wake up about two hours before I leave the house sometimes.
People often question why I choose to get up so early, but once I explain it kind of makes more sense.
On a day when I’m not going anywhere, or doing anything special, I’ll usually wonder around in a pair of jeans and jumper. I often find that these are the easiest things to put on because there aren’t all that many buttons involved, and I can just pull things on over my head and be done with it.
If I’m having to wear a button down shirt, this can sometimes take a lot longer (there was one time that it took fifteen minutes). I never know if any day will be like that until I start trying to do things, so I have to leave myself plenty of time. You know, just in case. Socks are usually always a pain no matter what.
And don’t even get me started on tights if I’m wearing a skirt or dress.
You know that scene in the Princess Diaries when Anne Hathaway’s character is trying to get changed in the back of car and keeps falling over? Well, that’s me, except I’m not in a car, but at home, in my own room, with everything set out in ways that I find easiest to work with.
I really dislike tights, but I still wear them because it’s worth the effort to keep my legs warm.
Anyway, once I’ve done all that, and battled with my shoes (I’m not even going to there), I have to leave the house, and have to do so way in advance because I never know how long it’s going to take me to walk places, or if there’ll be room for my walking frame on the public transport I need to take. If there isn’t, then I have to wait for the next one, which adds time to the journey. I don’t mind, as long as I get there safely in the end.
Sometimes, I set off so early that I end up getting places an hour or so early, but I don’t mind at all because I hate being late. I just always make a point of trying to have something to read in my bag and it’s all fine.
Today, I kind of had one of those days when I was trying to make a sandwich for lunch. It was a new loaf of bread that no one had started yet, so I had to struggle with that annoying little sicker on the packet and then try and reseal it. I myself I totally convinced that these things aren’t actually designed to go back on, because they never seem sticky enough, and I can never actually retie the packet tight enough to get the silly things back on anyway. That took a while. Then, I had to make three trips to the fridge to get the cheese, ham and margarine that I wanted and put them back again. In the end, around fifteen to twenty minutes later, I had my meal. I am lucky. It’s more than some people will have.
But what surprised me most of all was that, when I made the sandwich, I made it on a plate, and then stood there staring at it for a couple of seconds before I realised that I wouldn’t be able to carry it to the dining room like that so I popped it into a bowl. Yet, for those couple of seconds that I was stood there thinking to myself that something didn’t look right, I forgot that I’d find something really hard, or that if I tried to carry a sandwich without puting it into a bowl first, there would be a good chance my floor would have my food instead.
When I go to these meetings or appointments that I mentioned above, I always try and let people know that I have Cerebral Palsy before I arrive so that I can check the accessibility of the building and whatnot. Yet, sometimes I forget to do that on the first phone call or in that first e-mail, and have to get in touch again and say “by the way, I forgot to mention this before but…”
Sometimes, my parents will ask me to something that I haven’t quite managed to find a way around yet, and then say “Oh sorry Nic, I forgot then”
It still takes me by surprise that, my family, my friends and I forget sometimes, but it’s nice. It’s nice that it’s not the first thing that any of us think about. Plus, as I’ve said before on this blog many times, I wouldn’t take away my disability, even if I could.
That’s why, when I move slowly or find things hard I really don’t mind at all. Well, most of the time anyway.