Courage is being scared to death… and saddling up anyway.~ John Wayne
Having a disability is challenging in more ways than most people can imagine. I choose to use a service dog to help with my disabilities. It’s not as easy as some people think. Aside from countless hours of training a canine to help me, I have also had to learn how to help people understand how Blizzard and I work as a team. Some days I’m more diplomatic than other days. I have a list of snappy comebacks to many of the snide comments I hear every day. And then ,there are the “situations” we find ourselves in when we least expect something to happen. The following is a social media post, reposted with permission, that my friend Karyn B. wrote this morning:
Some of you know that I have had a bit of tense history with an elderly gentleman, a Korean War Veteran, who is a patron at my pharmacy. I have had three very unpleasant encounters him regarding Silas. Being we have not crossed paths in quite some time, I assumed the pharmacy warning to compose himself came to fruition and resulted in his transfer to another pharmacy. No, and I quivered as I parked my car and thought I recognized his truck. I am glad I chose to go inside. As Silas and I rounded the corner to the pharmacy, there he was. Scowling. Mumbling in a grunting manner. One eye one me and one eye on Silas. The pharmacist simply said, “Mr ?, that is a service team. You must ignore them.” The man looked at Si and looked back at the pharmacist and said, “She needs to keep that monster bastard away from me.” As if my mouth ran on new Energizer batteries, “Sir, he’s not a bastard, he was an orphan. I am certain you have killed more people than he has, and he is no less a survivor than you. He serves me with the same diligence you served our country. And, his name is Silas, not monster.” Yes, everyone heard the pin drop. My hands were shaking and my voice trembling. I actually had nervous tears in my eyes. I went silent. He checked out, then took a seat. I made my purchase and turned to leave. In a slow, arthritic rise, he stood up and came to me. He said no other words as he walked directly beside Si with the same prong cane he instigated and threatened Silas with before. We exited the sliders as if we went into the store together. The man stood waiting as I had Silas load. I did feel uneasy, uncomfortable with him so near. The man then opened my door for me. I thanked him. He didn’t smile. He didn’t respond, but his actions spoke a million words These are the moments that make life so beautiful. Brave, yet simple and pure.
You don’t need a cape to be a superhero…just the courage to face your challenges with grace and dignity.