I was on the train the other day travelling to the city with Brett, to see my Dad who was having an angiogram at RPAH (Royal Prince Alfred Hospital) and I just had a random thought because of a fellow commuter or mother with two wonderful kids, one them having Downes Syndrome.
No I know most of you are thinking, yeah what is so special about this kid, but its not so much as to what his disability or ability that make him unique per say, its more the reaction of other fellow commuters who just saw this little kid who could be no more than 2 or 3, who was bouncing around in the pram while is twin brother just sat behind him (they were in a double pram) quite content trying to watch what was happening.
But I digress, the main thing was how the commuters reacted, as the kid waved at people, made cute comments and they where happy to react and make wonderful comments to the mother how cute they both where or how actively wonderful the kid with Downes Syndrome is and the mother was happy.
Now it got me thinking, rewind to say about 10, 15 heck even 20 years, would this even be something that would have remotely could have happened, where compliments where given versus just silent glares of horror or worse, words of discouragement, because I can tell you that was the case. I mean I should know, my mother, heck even family got horror looks from people or worse, rude and quite absurd remarks/comments. The worst I had was when I was shopping once in my wheelchair and this kid was watching me with some confusion but happiness as I heard him say to his mum 'I want a chair like that' to which the mother replied 'No your won't ever because he has a disease!!'.
So what happened to make change happen all of a sudden I hear you ask. Well it would more than likely be a combination of things of which one main thing stands out to me - the Paralympics.
But why the Paralympics, I mean they are no different at the end of the day, why would they cause changes and thats simple - with the Paralympics being telecast nationally and over the web or through print media on the medals won or how how a Paralympic Athlete has beaten all odds to win or progress to the next step and how that is achieved have, in my opinion, made society realise that at the end of the day, we are all the same regardless if we need walking sticks or a walker or even use a wheelchair part time or full time, we are all the same.
Sure things can be a little different when it comes down to daily chores, but not every one does the same things the same way, we all have our different ways of doing things and really we are all the same regardless.
I certainly believe this is what has cause society to realise where its problem is and made change happen for the better, at least to a certain degree.
I just hope that this kind of spririt of thinking can continue and that it develops and becomes more accepting at the end of the day.
All I can say is that at the end of the day, regardless if you have a disability or not, you will achieve greatness in your own way and that is what makes you and everyone else unique.
So as I finish off my little pondering session of which I have made you think about what I have said, I am curious though, what would you think or do if you saw or know or knew of someone with disability, what would you think of them and what would you do at the end of the day? Would you talk down to them or would you help them or would you avoid them altogether.
Leave your comments below because honestly I would like to know what you would do or give suggestions on how you would deal with these scenarios.