#1 It’s clear a sense of humour helps in all walks of life (pardon the pun) but this I found is certainly needed with regards a disability. Dealing with statements and I quote “Because you’re in a chair you probably don’t get much action?” “I know about disabilities because my gran was an invalid too’ “Do you need help pushing your buggy?” ”You should come with a manual”. Smile at their ignorance and don’t let it get you down!
#2 Don’t compare yourself to somebody else. Remember who you are. When we compare ourselves to others and their achievements we self hate. You are unique, a person of value, you have a different path in life. Keep your identity and dignity. Don’t compromise this for anyone.
#3 We all have limitations; we are only bone and blood at the end of the day. You just need to relearn your new limits. It takes time and practice (patience and frustration) to re-learn your body and its new changes. Don’t punish yourself for this.
# 4 Lets face it, an SCI comes with a whole litany of health issues. So why add to them? Physical activity such as a 40min/day low intensity stroll, helps prevent secondary conditions of paralysis such as heart disease, diabetes, pressure sores, carpal tunnel syndrome, obstructive pulmonary disease, hypertension, urinary tract infections and respiratory disease. It helps to build strength, endurance and stamina, to keep joints loose and flexible, to aid bladder and bowel function, to reduce stress, to get more restful sleep and it just makes you feel better and gives you a more positive attitude. So start small and get moving!
#5 Be assertive! This is still your body and you have a right to direct your care. Don’t accept the norm because that’s just the way it is. See what routine works best for you. You have had to accept enough, take some control back and ownership of your life!