If a doctor gave you the news that tomorrow, after taking a pill, you would wake up and be perfectly fine, would you take the pill? In disability forums, many people fight over this very hot topic.
I myself would snatch that pill from the doctor's grubby hands. But that is just me. I've spent my life as a disabled person and darn it, it would be a nice change of pace not to have a wheelchair attached to my butt. Don’t misunderstand me. I love my life, my fiance , family and my dear friends. That wouldn't change. The only thing that would be different is that I could run and jump and not be in misery every un-medicated waking hour of every day.
I would take up dancing and go down to the beach and run through the sand. Oh, and I would walk down the isle at my wedding perfectly, and dance with joy and abandonment afterward. My life would change. But as a person, I would not.
I know many people born with disabilities and those who have had accidents who want to walk like me. They want a cure NOW! The ones who were born with disabilities seem content with what they have been given, with what they consider to be not all, but enough to be bothersome to someone who can see a huge benefit to being able to walk and be without unrelenting pain or to just get into a car and not have to drag a wheelchair around. I'm talking about walking to the bathroom or down the hall.
I understand why some people feel like there has to be a reason why. It helps them cope with a devastating life-altering disability. Those who excel at being an SCI Superstars do so because they have no other choice. But given a choice, I bet money that each one of them would jump at the chance to walk again.
It is crazy to think someone (given such a chance) would give it up because they are happier with everything that goes along with their disability that most people don’t even know about. Walking is not the biggest reason to want out of the chair. I's a good one, but there are devastating effects as a result of not walking. These start to happen as we age, but do not happen as early to people who are mobile until they are elderly.
What’s your opinion? Would you take the pill? This topic came up while talking to a friend and I wanted to see what everyone thought.
*Photograph by Army Medicine