What you think, how sick/disabled person should look like? People use to think that those are rough physical changes and if you'd try to draw it, it would be something like Disney's monster. Mentally illness can feel like it, but this is really trick question. As well you could ask, how human should look like! Everyone of us is different and same way every disease and disability is different. Idea of visible changes is so strong, that it kind of makes it to be less or erase the problem for others.
So which one is better; looking like ”normal” people or sick enough to have credibility in others eyes? In normal situation anyone would answer, to look like normal, but this is more complicated, when you are sick and it's not always that easy to see. I'm young, healthy looking woman and I'm retired. It's not easy to make someone to believe, that I have rights for pensioner discount, or use handicap parking, even I have ID to prove it. The looks I get are telling to me, from who you stole this. Often only visible sign of my situation is wheelchair or other aids. Other visible signs are slowness when I move and being tired. Most clear symptoms for me are tremor and muscle spasms. Those just are something, what others don't see that often. Because then I'm too tired to leave from home!
WRONG KIND OF DISABLED
Almost always people presume that person in wheelchair is paralyzed and/or mentally deficient. Anyways unable to take care of themselves and communicate for their own behalf. When I stand up from wheelchair and take couple steps, the first reaction is disbelieve and idea of miracle of healing. The second reaction, well time to time, the only reaction is judgment. For them it seems to be clear that I'm fraud. I'm person to trying to get false attention and health benefits. The reaction isn't ever happiness for me, that I feel good enough to move a little bit. Time to time it's easier just sit and not take those steps. If I feel very annoyed, I might take those view steps just to shock someone, even it's taking extra power from me.
When already vulnerable human tells about his/hers illness, they leave themselves for others judgment and evaluation. When people find out that someone is some way weaker or just different then others, they feel like it's their right to tell, what they think of you and your situation. Things that they wouldn't ever let anyone to say about them. Basically there is two kind of people. First and the biggest group is made from people, who lurks from side and are trying to be ”polite” and aren't asking anything. The second group can just walk right to you and bluntly ask ”What's wrong with you?” When I'll tell that I don't know yet, the second question is, ”Why you are then in wheelchair?” Like not having right diagnose yet, makes you to be healthy and not having any symptoms! Like those years when I used crutches, people kept asking from me, ”Is your leg hurting?” My mother told me that she thought once, when I was about eleven years old, that I'm going to hit the next one asking that! It was something that people asked from me many times, every single day! I didn't hit anyone then, or after it, but I started to answer sarcastly, ”No, I'm using these just for fun!” But the thing that is the biggest wonder for me is, why using rollator makes others to be more emphatic then wheelchair? Like at least I can walk then my own! Rollator isn't the best for me, but helps sometimes in crowd and if I'm not sure how much I can walk, I have place to sit. Else where then on ground. Plus I don't have to carry anything. It's my favourite aid for library. I can sit and find books and then I don't have to carry those.
Time to time I find myself thinking can this sick person to focus to make up, hairs, clothes... Try to be pretty. It's the way how I can hide many of my symptoms and being tired. At same time we are back to thought about, you aren't sick if you don't look like it. And in hard situation you can't be happy and fine with your life. I like to smile, laugh and talk a lot. I like dresses, make up and doing my hair, but I don't always have physical strength to do it. Assistant can help with some things, like nail polish or wash my hair. I just try remember to do what makes me happy and not care what others think about me! @FromMadeByMeri