Often people ask me if I have to buy both shoes. The answer, sadly, is yes I do. So, when I saw this cartoon several years ago it really made me laugh.
I choose to look at my situation with a sense of humor. I go about my day as any bi-ped and do the things that need to be done. I do not ask for help and often when it is offered to me I decline it. There is something in me
(Rarely is bolded, italicized, and underlined because there are those few occasions where I will use it to my advantage. Such as to get preferential seating at a sporting event, or to get on an airplane first, or to use an elevator instead of the stairs. I don't want to mislead anyone into thinking I never use being "one legged" to my advantage.)
I am an empathetic individual and often when I was sick my friends wouldn't share things with me because they thought what they were going through was trivial compared to my cancer. I told each on of them, and I truly believe this, that everything is relative. If something is going on in your life or if you are sick or injured even if it is not cancer, it is still important. Example: paper-cut vs cancer - doesn't matter because that paper-cut hurts and it happened to you so it is important. One of the parents at the school I teach at was complaining to me of his back hurting and all his other ailments; then he looked at me and said, look who I am complaining too. My response, "everything's relative."
There are times however, when I lose my empathetic side and forget that everyone is different. I forget that others may not be as strong willed as I am or that they may have other things going on in their lives that make them seek out attention for their illness, surgeries, or ailments. I forget that others do not look at their situations as a blessing to learn more about themselves. I forget that others do not have the same sense of humor in their situation as I do. I forget that others may not have the incredible support of friends and family to help them. For those moments, of forgetfulness I apologize. Who am I to say that what you are going through is not difficult or more challenging than having one leg? I am however, someone who is human and who notices when she has made a mistake. I am someone who will pray that you are given the strength to get past these days and I am someone who is not afraid to admit when she is wrong. I truly do believe that everything is relative and if you are experiencing it then it is important.