“Putting out fires” is a phrase anyone in the restaurant business will recognize; it unfortunately also seems to sum up my school/work/health/family situation as well which is not particularly fun. I’ll try to accentuate the positive with this post, but understand that a great deal is going unsaid, and most of that is pure, unadulterated stress.

However, first bit of lovely news: I took a break from treading water at school to pretend I was an ace student again at a theology department reception, and I received a lovely lovely pin from a theology honor society. Of course, being the size of a barn (a really, really short barn) didn’t exactly add to the experience:


“Wear black, honey, it’s slimming.” Maybe not in the seventh month, right?

~

Another enjoyable thing: DJ Buddha’s marvellous response to Chris Hitchen’s “God is Not Great.” It’s so thrilling to see a Buddhist response to the spate of atheist-polemic topping the charts these days. The blog is worth a look too.

~

Finally, I can’t even begin to express the gratitude I feel to various family members for making it possible for me to buy a car. Even though I feel like a sheep and a consumerist drone, even though I now have to care about gas prices, and even though my husband and I are trying to overcompensate in every other possible way (we’ve cut out using plastic shopping bags and water bottles, we’re going to be composting, etc.), I have to say I love this car.

Suddenly, I can go places. I can register for class next semester (provided, ahem, that I get my shit together enough to do so). I can see family. I can take my kid to the Botanical Gardens. I can buy groceries.

One slight, tiny issue that I have with said wonderful family who bought me the car, as well as every other person I know since I bought the car, is their glee that I can use “handicapped parking” and the insistence that I get that placard right away. Now, for once this isn’t an ego issue–I don’t have a problem acknowledging myself as disabled and so forth. Rather, I look at the limited availability of accessible spots and ask- Why? Why do you want to me to take one just because I can? Why should I take the spot from someone who might actually find themselves unable to maneuver their chair out of a non-accessible spot? When I need the damn spot, I assure you, I’ll take it. However, if I’m still ambulatory and having a relatively good day, why on earth would I? I guess I just… well, I don’t really like the whole tone involved with the “Now you can get one of those spots!” thing–as though I’d better milk the system as much as I could because the average person is being so completely inconvenienced on behalf of the disabled that my (dear, sweet, nice) family wants to see someone they know “get something out of it.”

Meanwhile, the more I play in the shallow end of disability culture, the more trouble I have seeing it quite that way.

Still, despite that little (or not-so-little) quibble, I do love and adore having a car and feel like a princess in it. In honor of that, a photo of me as happy pregnant lady, academics in jeopardy but still able to hide the belly behind a tote bag so it’s aaaaalllll good.

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