After a long day of traveling, I have finally arrived in Chicago. To be more specific, I finally arrived at my hotel which happens to be located in Chicago. I doubt that I will explore my new surroundings.
Time and experience has tamed my adventurous spirit. When I was younger, I would think nothing of grabbing a map and setting off to explore. I am not sure if it is my limb loss, my age, or perhaps a combination of both, but I am more cautious.
Actually, cautious is probably not a strong enough descriptor. I hesitate to admit it, but being alone in an unfamiliar city scares me. I hate being scared!
I am more aware of the hazards in the world. I know about predators, and the potential of danger from devotees. I am also cognizant that, since I am at a conference geared towards prosthetics, devotees are bound to be lurking around. In a strange way, I am noticing an direct correlation between the height of the buildings around me and my level of insecurity. As the buildings become taller and more clustered, I become more insecure, self-conscious and scared. Again, I hate that feeling!
Before my amputation, I suspect I would have been more likely to explore. Yes, I would have been nervous, but I would not have let my fears stop me. Now I am living with a different reality.
As much as I hate to admit it, my amputation has affected me in some very real ways. Other than the obvious, I think that I am more aware of my surroundings, especially of possible dangers. I know that I am an easier target for assailants. One strong push and I am on the ground. It takes me longer to stand up, and I can't run as quickly as others. Take off my leg, and I am stranded, at the mercy of whoever is holding my prosthetic. If I were one of the "bad guys," I would probably pick me, or somebody like me, as a target. Despite self-defense training, I am more vulnerable.
I don't know this city, and I wouldn't know if I wandered into an unsavory section of town before the mistake was made. I wish I could go sight seeing. I have been wanting to go to the Weber Grill Restaurant since I saw it featured on the Food Channel. I saw the restaurant from my taxi. Does that count?
I am beating myself up because of my fears. I resent that my limb loss has made me so concerned that I am hesitant to explore Chicago on my own. I want to get up and go experience this city. I also don't want to get lost or hurt and, right now, staying safe feels like more of a priority.
Perhaps, after the conference starts and I begin to meet people, I will become more comfortable venturing beyond the hotel walls. I know that I there is safety in numbers. For now, I am going to enjoy the solitude and the treats offered by room service.
- I am a below knee amputee. More importantly, I am also Mommy to two boys, a very active 10 year old (Robby) and an mischievous toddler (Timmy). I have learned that being a parent with a disability can create some unusual and sometimes humorous situations. This blogger is available for hire! Let's talk and learn how a blog can expand your business.