Hold the Door!
I was reading a message board recently. The person posting had a disability and was ranting about how people who offer help seemed demeaning and wished they would back off. I used to think that way. However, now that I’m older (…and wiser…pah!) I can see the situation with new eyes. Here’s an example…
It’s an awkward situation to find yourself encountering a door. Wait…the door isn’t awkward …necessarily…I mean when I approach the door. Well, I’m not saying that when I approach a door that it’s “awkward” per se…just when other people are involved with the door approaching. I digress…
Let me paint you a picture…
Imagine a beautiful, confident, independent woman comes rolling in her cute wheelchair to the door as you are approaching it. Not awkward. You are in a hurry….but…but..she’s almost to the door. Should you wait? Should you keep going? Will you look like a jerk if you just keep going and not wait to open it for her? Should you just say oops as you shut the door in her face? Avoid eye contact as you head off to your next destination? AWKWARD! (Head explodes)
This scenario has occurred on several occasions. Honest! Well, except heads didn’t explode. 🙂
I got to the door and opened it. I turned around and looked to see a girl in a wheelchair intending to use said door. She was about 2-12 feet from the door and I thought I’d be nice and open it for her. I waited…and waited…and waited… She was further than I thought and I misjudged (shock!) the time I had to get to my next class and the time it would take her to wheel into the building . So…what did I do? What any normal and reasonable person would do. Run! (Figuratively…).
JUST KIDDING! I stayed and chatted with her until she crossed the threshold. This could have been an awkward social situation but luckily I love talking to people. I got to find out more about her.
I’ve seen this happen to me too.
It’s so strange to have someone stare at you for that long (while holding the door at the same time). If you ever want to know what I prefer in that type of situation, well… I don’t care either way.
If you hold the door for me…awesome! I always respect manners and I don’t see it as “poor cripple girl” thing, I prefer to see it as people remembering to treat others with kindness. It helps me remember to do the same for others.
If you don’t hold the door…cool! I understand. You didn’t see me, or I wasn’t fast enough (scoff…! I’ve got four wheels!) or whatever. No offense taken. 🙂
I think you should always accept a good deed, a display of kindness or a show of manners from others with an open mind. Perhaps their intentions are skewed but at least it will remind you to do the same. 🙂