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Rated: E · Draft · Contest Entry · #2184218
A woman gets another shot at life after an accident leaves her in a wheel chair.
I can’t believe the interest that goes into a bicycle race. Though I have to admit, some of the outfits, these bicyclists wear are quite colorful. I always cringe just a little bit when I these people on the road. My cousin was killed in a hit and run while she was riding her bike home. It’s been a little over two years now and it still haunts me that they still haven’t found the person responsible.

Non-generously, I think at least her pain is over. Mine will remain with me probably the rest of my life. I struggle to get out of bed and annoyed, realize that my wheel chair is a few inches farther than I can reach. I’m just about killing myself when the nurse comes in. I’m ashamed to admit to having need of one at all. The nurse pushes it into reach, and I decline her offer of assistance as I lower myself into it. She admonishes me for being so stubborn. But really, if I don’t make some effort at independence I may as well give up.

She sets to work with her thimble. She has offered to teach me, but I argue I’m much to impatient to learn. She says that seems to be a recurring factor with me. I ignore her, and wheel myself to the kitchen. It was rather annoying at first when I couldn’t reach my own counter tops, but my dad was able to pull some strings and make things much easier for me in my new handicapped status. It was still odd for me to think of myself in that way.

Obviously when people saw me it was evident enough. But I just saw me as me, not some ‘’poor little thing in a wheel chair’’. I’d first heard that before when I went shopping with my mom at the grocery store for the first time after the incident that got me this way. I was honestly too embarrassed to go myself, so mom volunteered to go with me. I was more than happy to accidently run over this woman’s sandal clad foot on the way to check out.

I didn’t mind so much when children asked about it. I was a little unsure of how to approach it at first, but I couldn’t blame them for their natural curiosity. It was the adults who tried to ignore me or avoid the fact that I was in a wheel chair that irritated me. I know it makes others uncomfortable. It certainly to seemed to with my ex. But I appreciated those that didn’t ignore or tried to avoid it, but came up to me anyways, and said ‘’How are you doing Teresa?’’ If I was mellow, some polite conversation could be made. But when I wasn’t I made sure people gave me a wide berth. I couldn’t exactly say how miserable I felt sometimes or to see other people walking around obliviously and not appreciating that fact where here I sat, grated on my nerves something awful.

I was startled back into the present when the doorbell rang. I made to answer it, but the ever-alert nurse Helen beat me to it. It was sister dropping off my nephew Herbert. Unfortunately named as he was, I offered to help him get it changed as soon as he was an adult. My sister never seemed able to appreciate my humor. Hebert became a joy for when he didn’t act weird at the fact I was now wheel chair bound. He took it as an opportunity to drive his auntie around wherever she needed to go. And sometimes when we could get away with it, it became a race car and we had a blast. Until nurse Helen caught us and put a stop to it. It was while Herbert was going on about the latest movie craze and about this super spy’s mysterious forgotten past, that my sister confessed to the real reason she came by. Besides dropping Herbert off so she could do her weekly aerobics class.

Apparently, Herbert’s school was short on teachers. One of their more problematic areas to fill was substitutes oddly enough. Regular full-on contracted teachers were apparently more willing to deal with the crazy and sometimes even violent kids at my nephew’s school. But as we all know, no one respects a sub and the benefits clearly weren’t that good if they couldn’t keep the subs there. Which became a problem for the teachers if they couldn’t be there. Not sure how this was really my concern, when she dropped the bomb on me.

I apparently wasn’t paying enough attention when she started her spiel. But my sister got this grand idea that since I was in my odd interim anyways, why not do something useful with the time that I had? I hadn’t had a headache since I was in the beginning stages of recovering from my accident. I felt as if I might be developing one now. Apparently, my sister thought I could become a substitute for my nephew’s school just like that. I’ve made a heap ton of progress since after the incident that made me wheel chair bound, but it seems like a big leap to me.

My sister was quick to inform me that they’re real wheel chair friendly. They also have a special bus to those who may have ‘’special requirements’’ as she called it and they could just pick me up and send me right over to the school. It was a bit overwhelming to think about and I’d need sometime to think it over. I love my nephew, and I never minded working with kids before, but I thought this might be more than I could handle. I told her I would think on it. She probably took that as a ‘’yes’’ and told me they would need a sub for Ms. Garside’s fourth grade class next Tuesday. I wasn’t sure of the polite response.

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