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For a black scarf

I went to TJ Maxx today to buy a black scarf, we can never have to many of those. I walked in, my boyfriend set Woody (portable oxygen) in a cart and I pumped to 4.5 liters to enjoy browsing.

I looked at all the bags, jewels, beauty products and then saw the scarves and picked out a silky-black one. I really like it, it’s almost satin-like with a gentle touch. I saw the shoe aisles and smiled 🙂

My boyfriend and I joked about what shoes I’d purchase next. Then, I saw them – the black, suede, 5 inch, peep-toe heels. I immediately grabbed them and slid them on. I was telling my boyfriend how lovely they where and how sad I was I couldn’t walk anymore in heels (muscle deterioration) when a woman wearing an orange sweater made a comment.

I was laughing when she said, “Those are bad for your feet.” I smiled and replied “I know, I just adore a nice heel.” She gave me half a smile and then said “They are bad for your feet though and they’ll leave you crippled by the time you’re 50.” I was insulted. As she turned the aisle, I politely said “I’ll be dead by then.” She answered whimsically “No you won’t.” So I said “Yes I will.” She said something but I had pushed her out of my mind.

I looked at my boyfriend in disbelief and vented how I felt awful with the word “cripple.” We argued a bit, his point was that I shouldn’t argue with strangers or answer with such things.
My feelings of the word “cripple.” I am a cripple by definition. I am disabled with acceptance of my diseases. I know exactly what that word can do to someone’s mind and heart. No one should use the word “cripple” to prove a point.

We are more than our diseases and very much alive.

The moral I think that you should take from this is: We are secretly ninja turtles with dry coughs.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The COPD.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Comments

  • Noel.Martin
    2 years ago

    Hi Edi! I am so sorry that you had to deal with hurtful words while you were just trying to enjoy yourself. Some people just have no idea of the power words can have. You never know what a person is going through at any given time and so while there was no bad intent behind what she said it was still hurtful. As Allyson wrote previously continue to do the things that make you feel good, enjoy life and don’t let anyone keep you from living it. I LOVE the fact that you are a “ninja turtle with a dry cough”. Keep fighting and thank you so much for being a part of our community!

    Warmly,
    Noel (COPD.net Team)

  • Allyson.Ellis moderator
    2 years ago

    Edi,
    Thank you so much for sharing your story! First, I’m glad you found a new scarf that you like and feels good! Having things that help you feel good is so important. Just as doing things that make you feel good is so important – like trying on black, suede, five-inch, peep-toe heels, even if you know you can’t buy/wear them long-term! I am so sorry about the encounter that happened after that. You were doing something to help you feel positive and the other woman’s words took some of the joy you were experiencing from you. You are absolutely correct that words have power. How people choose their words matters. “Cripple” and “disabled” are words with an extreme power to wound those who suffer from any disease. Whether she knew you had a disease or not, her choice of words was extremely hurtful. You absolutely are much more than your diagnosis. It is so important that you are able to claim that, as it is not always easy. Keep doing those things that make you feel good! Try on the shoes you can’t buy, just because it brings you joy. I am glad you are part of the community!

    Best,
    Allyson (site moderator)

  • Allyson.Ellis moderator
    2 years ago

    Edi,
    Thank you so much for sharing your story! First, I’m glad you found a new scarf that you like and feels good! Having things that help you feel good is so important. Just as doing things that make you feel good is so important – like trying on black, suede, five-inch, peep-toe heels, even if you know you can’t buy/wear them long-term! I am so sorry about the encounter that happened after that. You were doing something to help you feel positive and the other woman’s words took some of the joy you were experiencing from you. You are absolutely correct that words have power. How people choose their words matters. “Cripple” and “disabled” are words with an extreme power to wound those who suffer from any disease. Whether she knew you had a disease or not, her choice of words was extremely hurtful. You absolutely are much more than your diagnosis. It is so important that you are able to claim that, as it is not always easy. Keep doing those things that make you feel good! Try on the shoes you can’t buy, just because it brings you joy. I am glad you are part of the community!

    Best,
    Allyson (site moderator)

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