[Disability] Diary of a Cripple 4

In #rabble4, Blog, Culture, Humour, Politicsby Paul Bloof1 Comment

Illustration by Roy Blumenthal

Paul Bloof jumped off a ten foot wall some time ago, it left him in a wheelchair for a while.

When you go from being a regular hyperactive sociopath to a wheelchair-bound invalid overnight suddenly you have a lot of explaining to do. The events have be recounted to one and all so the hows , whys and medical updates were uploaded to a blog site called Body Salami to spread the gory details.

Most of it was written daily and and on overdoses of painkillers so it was an honest fairly light-hearted account of the state of repairs. I joked about the way people suddenly treated me differently , the difficulties of cleaning and feeding myself and laughed at the urban gauntlet I had to run to get food and money. July 3rd 2011 : Screw you Disability Benefit for making go weekly across town to get a doctor to sign a piece of paper to say that Yes, I was fucked !

A public blog , the big mistake I made was tagging it meticulously #wheelchair #disability every post. It was really just for my friends and family but pretty soon I had 50 followers from the web including 3 perverts, 10 Jesus-freaks and about 20 wheelchair users.

The other wheelies were mostly emo teenagers were screaming blue murder about the inconsiderations of walking-folk, the frustrations of immobility and the lack of sex. It was good to read other people talking about how if you hit a pebble at top speed without your seatbelt on you’d end on your face on the pavement. Most couldn’t afford a better wheelchair or get a minder that actually liked them but from reading their blogs you get bizarre insights into their lives like when your looking up the personal ads to maybe find a lover do you search under Ambled seeking Disabled, Disabled seeking Ambled or Disabled seeking Disabled.

It didn’t concern me who read my rants until I rage-posted in August “Eight more weeks and I’m out of this fkn chair!”. The response I got from a 16 year old cripple punk in the States was “Yay! Me too..suicide pact?” and I realised I was nothing more than a tourist in others life-long struggle. I get to stand up and walk away.

Hope is a hell of a drug. Fueled by the knowledge that this self repairing organism would restore my body to a version of itself before I took an 18 month “shortcut” over a ten foot wall I could laugh my way through this cripple funk and end my blog on a hallelujah-he-can-walk-again climax but what would be a heart-warming tale of endurance for my close friends and me would be a bitter reality kick for any full-timer who didn’t have a get-out-of-jail-free card like me. A belly churning image of Irish Independents’ Alison O’Riordans prissy little moanings about begging for ten minutes flashed into my mind , I puked in my mouth a bit and switched the blog to private.

But I didn’t get to stand up and walk away because as I soon found out if anyone sits down for six months your muscles waste and you have to spend months learning how to walk again. Hope is a helluva drug because if they told me a year ago I would still be hobbling around a year later, still getting forms signed weekly (bastards!) and unable to ever return to catering work my holiday in crippledom would have been a much darker affair.

Thankfully my accident didn’t really affect anyones life except my own so I used the time to change my career and develop a completely new set of skills. I’ve a bit of a funny walk but i was moving too fast anyway.


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