i swore up and down that this blog wouldn’t become an adult version of my teenage diary a.k.a. filled with some super-happy entries and mostly super-sad (read: teenage angst) entries. the truth is, i still haven’t figured out what i plan to do with this blog, but one thing’s for sure – i still process pain by writing. and life isn’t just about happiness, so this blog will have some ache-y posts and somehow it’ll all balance out. writing is just my way of processing. and this blog has to be for me before it is for anyone else.
don’t worry, this post is not about teenage angst.
i walk home from work.
the last leg of my walk home takes me straight through the go bus station in downtown toronto. i walk in the section where the parked go buses sit i.e. it’s dark and there are only a few people around. so, i almost missed him.
a black man, wearing an olive coloured suit, maybe in his mid 30s or early 40s. and, he was disabled. i have no idea how to label various disabilities, so the only way i can describe it is, he had crutches and whatever condition it is that gives you the legs-splayed-out look as you try to walk. well, when i first saw him, he was bent over (one crutch on the ground) and trying *so* hard to pick up a big file folder that he had obviously dropped.
he had just managed to pick it up and then twist his hand around his crutch and also pick it up, when my brain registered that he might need help. but he didn’t look defeated, he looked determined. he then stuck the file under his armpit and awkwardly, his crutch, too, and took one brave step forward. and then another. and another. slowly.
and my heart just broke.
i could tell that picking up the file had taken a lot of strain, energy, pain… and that with every slow step, he was praying he wouldn’t drop it again. .. i didn’t want to stare, but i also couldn’t peel my eyes away.
It was 9:30 p.m., from the way he was dressed it seemed like he had maybe gone for an interview. Did it go well? Why isn’t wheel trans taking you around? Oh gosh, I hope you get that job. I wanted to run over and tell him to have a seat on a bench and that I’d come back with a zipcar and drive him home. Why, why, why do some people have it oh so hard? It just breaks my heart. i could just imagine the moment he dropped his folder. in the dark, with nobody around. nobody to ask for help and no way to move forward without it. what it must have drained from him mentally and physically.
i still haven’t gotten the image of him out of my head. i kept turning around to check on him, until i couldn’t see him. he slowly crossed the median… the median took him a good 20 seconds to climb onto and then climb off of. it was 9:30 p.m. nine thirty. and cold. i still have so many questions… but mostly my heart still aches. why is it so difficult for some? and what can i do to help?