this morning left me feeling all weepy.
we took our eighth grade students
up to the big bad high school
for their annual
'you're almost there'
as staff members
we dragged our feet behind them
in dread of what the morning held:
not my forte.
i opted to follow a group of students
one of which was confined to a wheelchair
following a surgery he had last week.
things started off smoothly enough.
we managed to get around to both auditoriums
for sessions ranging from
to drama club
but as our tour began,
things took a turn.
as an alumnus
i knew where the elevators were located in the building
and our tour
became full of detours
and before long
we had lost our group.
it was me
and a wheelchair
trying to make it through
the maze of hallways
familiar to me
frightening to him.
i attempted to make the most of the situation
by pointing out the girls' locker room
(a place i should never hear of him stepping foot)
and the media center where i had danced with my future husband
(when it was better known as 'the gym')
but i was struck numb
after several elevators
were unable to access one of the rooms
located on a main level
only accessible via a chair lift
that didn't work when i attended school there.
and we sat at the top of the stairs
waiting for his classmates
because we could not get to where they were.
and as someone that has faced these challenges
my heart broke for him
and for all those
that cannot gain access to those places
they desire to go
desire to be.
my heart ripped in two
when we got back to our own building
and his p.e. teacher looked at me puzzled and stated
'we're going outside, so i'm not sure what you want to do with him.'
as if he were some thing
instead of a person
who would love nothing more
than to just participate
to feel the sunshine on his own face
even if he couldn't run in it.
be cognisant of those around you
who may have physical limitations
do not feel sorry for them
find a way
to make them a part.
everyone deserves a chance to participate in this life.