Sunday, November 6, 2016

The Frazzled Cashier

Photo by Getty Images

In line at the checkout I could tell that the cashier was a little frazzled as she wrestled with the register and chatted up the ladies in from of me. The elder one asked if she could help me unload my cart onto the belt. She said she was bored and fidgety and it would save her sanity. I giggled and said sure. When they were rung up the tape on the register messed up and I could see panic on the cashier's face. It was a crowded Saturday afternoon at the first of the month and I was feeling for her.

The ladies in front of me left and it was my turn to check out. The cashier said "I thought you were with them." I said. "Nope, flying solo these days. How are you?" She said "I been better, I'm not liking 2016 yet. How are you?" I said, "I'm great!" I gave her a smile and she said, "If YOU are doing great then I have no right to complain." I raised an eyebrow and continued to smile as her words caught up with her. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean it like..." Her words trailed off and I said, "You know what? Let me put this in perspective for you. You are here for 8 to 10 hours standing on your feet and feeling the strain in your feet and your back. I am here for two hours and I'm pushing a button on a wheelchair. It's ok for you to have a worse day than me. Even if I could change my situation, I wouldn't. You know why?" She said "Why?" I said, "Because then there would be no reason to have conversations like this one." She smiled as she finished ringing me up looking at me a little confused and I told her I hoped her day got better and left hoping it did.

Every time I go I encounter situations like this one. I can almost hear the inspiration porn haters saying, "Etha! They don't need to be all up in your business, you have the right to go shopping without having anyone point out your disabilities and invade your space!" I have a few days where I don't want the attention, but I do and most of the time I enjoy the interaction unless someone tries to physically handle me without my permission then there is a fight. The way I see it, if me enjoying my life overcoming physical challenges makes me a "Inspiration porn star," then so be it. Let it give somebody courage and hope. The world needs more of that.

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