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It's Official, I'm Disabled.
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“I readily admit that I'm no expert on illness or injury, but have seen enough to be a fair judge. I've watched at least a thousand operations on every part of the body including eyes & brain. I was present for -3- (6 hour long) open heart surgeries (boy did my back hurt) and 95% of every other examination/proceedure hospitals/clinics have to offer. I've seen them hundreds of times including mammograms on straight (no hormones) males. I've seen hundreds of chemo treatments. Liver & Kidney biopsies. Cardio/Pulm you name it. Never had a colonoscopy but have seen a hundred. The only time I left the area was with X-rays, CT scans & MRI. Saw many thousands of them & was a little nervous about the exposure. Thousands of hours in the ER too. I'm a fair but ignorant judge of people abusing permits for despicable reasons.”
“catskhiker - Well, then, what do you think? Am I an abuser? My permit is based only upon the condition of my knees.
Not reasons for issuing the permit includes:
The activities in which I engage, I perform with determination. I'm trying to survive a little longer.
I get more twigs in my eyes backpacking than I do fingers in my eyes doing aikijutsu.
last edited: 7/28/05 10:14:16 AM”
“If you backpack or hike short of using a wheelchair, then yes you are abusing this system in my unenlightened opinion. If you workout, swim or take martial arts classes.....again yes, I believe you are wrong.
I've seen people with their guts out & severed limbs not be able to get near an emergency entrance.
I'm not allowed to carry a "backpack" on stringent orders from my ortho surgeon. He does allow me to carry a day (much lighter) pack. I have terrible time with the downside of mountains. Yes, to hike I need pain/inflamation meds. I LOVE winter camping. My options are surgery or a wheelchair if I ignore his warnings. No, I don't have a permit. Yes, I have hobbled in excruciating pain to entrances. No, I have NEVER parked in a handicapped parking space.”
“catskhiker - I appreciate and respect your opinion. In many aspects I agree with you.
However, I do meet the Florida Law. From Form HSMV 83039 (Rev. 06/05) S Application for Disabled Person Parking Permit Placard:
"... permanent disability(ies) that limits or impairs his/her ability to walk 200 feet without stopping to rest."I do meet this requirement because of the word "impairs.
"I'm sorry about your condition and limitations. I do wish you luck with it.
Regarding "workout, swim or take martial arts classes"
On the back extension machine, I can lift and lower 240 pounds about 18 inches 20 times in 20-30 seconds. On the leg extension machine I have trouble lifting 5 pounds with one leg. My workouts are limited to things that I can do. I don't run! I cannot accept the idea that handicapped people cannot do workouts. Sonetimes it is called physical rehabilition.
Swimming does not require use of the legs.
In my martial arts classes I am not required to do anything with which I am uncomfortable. I am only required to learn such things so as to be able to teach them. I do have to rest my legs periodically. If I stand still(listening) for more than a couple of minutes, my legs lock up and I then experience great difficulty and pain in trying to move.
Again, I respect your viewpoints. However, even in pain, I have no intention to cease my activities. My cardiologist stated, "Your exercise program is the only thing keeping you alive!"
While I now feel guilty about my Disabled Parking Permit, I'm going to use it and I will enjoy it.
last edited: 7/28/05 11:53:03 AM”
should have been
“Don't feel guilty for our sake nowslimmer. It's the little old ladies that need that space that will suffer tremendously, not us.”
“Some of those parking slots are pretty large. Maybe I can double-up with one of those gals.”
“Ah now I see. It's all just a ploy to meet women.”
I already told you:
“"... my Disabled Parking Permit, I'm going to use it and I will enjoy it."
“A problem surfaced:
I can't locate even one site of Handicapped Parking For Bicycles!
If I hang this placard on my motorcycle, someone might steal it!
last edited: 7/29/05 4:31:34 AM”
I am not going to spout out my opinion on handicapped parking and permits on this forum; however, I think that if you got the permit, use it and enjoy it. Looking forward to seeing you again on another trip!”
“Thanks, smokygirl. I would gladly trade a parking permit for better knees anytime. I may be back in your area soon. Take care. BTW, are you fully recovered?”
“With a disabled placard or license plate you can receive a lifetime "Golden Access" pass to any National Park for free. Got mine last month. I will admit that when I can eventually walk without aid again and not need my HP placard I will pay for a pass, but until then... :-)”
“Hikin Mike - Thanks for the information. I've been using a Golden Age Passport for years. BTW, your card will provide you camping at a 50% rate at anything National --- Parks, forest, preserves, etc., and I believe, at Army Corps of Engineers campgrounds(there are many of these).
last edited: 7/29/05 1:03:45 PM”
“NS, I'm not old enough for the Golden Age yet. Although I certainly do feel like it at times!”
“"The Golden Access Passport also provides a 50% discount on federal use fees charged for facilities and services such as camping, swimming, parking, boat launching, and specialized interpretive services. In some cases where use fees are charged, only the pass owner will be given the 50% price reduction. The Passport is nontransferable and does NOT cover or reduce special recreation permit fees or fees charged by concessioners."
"The pass is valid at National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, Corps of Engineers, Fish and Wildlife Service, Forest Service, and Tennessee Valley Authority sites with admission fees."”
“If you can hike, why can't you walk the extra distance when folks who are truly challenged may not find a space?
Your going to use a handicapped placard and then go into a gym for your martial arts class???
Seems (IMHO) pretty fiicked up to me.”
“Limpy - Are you trying to say that I am not truly challenged when walking? I am definitely challenged when walking. I do it with great difficulty and with pain.
I admit that the situation does sound ridiculous, and I am guilty of trying to make it sound that way. I'm determined to do things in spite of my problems and the adjustments that are required.
I posted the legal requirements for this state and tried to explain how I qualify within such framework. And I have explained some of the adjustments I make so that I can do some martial arts and other things. I don't do everything. I can't.
I am physically strong, except for the knees. This strength helps me to do some things. But when I can't carry a bag of groceries six feet because of my knees, I have a problem. (I can carry things easily on my back.)
It appears that some people would require a person to be bedridden to qualify for a Disabled Parking Permit. But, if I were bedridden, I would not need the permit!
You and everyone else are entitled to your opinions. But it appears that your opinions are tainted by using your own feelings as to what constitutes a handicap and your ignorance of my actual physical condition. My Internist has monitored my condition for over 10 years, she ordered new x-rays taken on Wednesday and based upon her examination and inspection of my knees and the x-rays, she signed the application form.
I realize that all of us are biased because of abuses that we have seen and because of drawing conclusions from what we see. But what we see is not always the full or final story. Some of you might be more considerate if you could walk in my shoes, that is, walk with my knees. I feel that I should be praised, not criticized, for attempting some of the activities that I do.
But, again, I do respect your right to make your own conclusions and to say whatever you like. I thank you for speaking out.”
“NS, I've a Mom who has "bad knees" or whats left of them are bad. She often has difficulties finding handicapped spots near the market (& such) She (as have we all)has seen people who are "apparently" not mobility challenged returning to their vehicles, sometimes the "handicap" being someone else who also uses that car. I just find it, um, ironic (?) that a backpacking, martial arts practicing swimmer/lover boy needs to take an HP spot from a "cripple."”
“Hang in there a few more decades nowslimmer, we will have the technology to rebuild you, and hopefully your insurance will cover it.”
“This morning my knees are doing their best to justify my Handicapped Parking Permit. Riding on my bicycle was OK, but standing, while folding my clothes in the laundry building, and each step of walking has been difficult and painful. So I offer no apology for having the permit.
I will admit that my knees do better much of the time, but they are impaired. Both knees have been injured previously.”
“Sorry to hear you are "gimpy" today.
“My car at the GSMNP Deep Creek Trailhead Parking Lot.
I did not leave the car there. I left the Disabled Parking Place for the day hikers.”
“Is that an 240 SX?”
“Oh man, I would love to get a look inside that trunk! nice wheels for an old guy :D”
After two months in GSMNP I caught a cold shortly after returning home. My knees went out at the same time. I think and hope it was due to the cold creating a change in some of my body fluids. The cold is now gone. I have been using crutches for over a month. But, during the past 3-days I have walked some without the crutches. In fact, today I have not yet used the crutches. But I still have some pain when walking and I hang on to chairs, tables, etc. as I move. Maybe I'll get better without knee surgery. I sure hope so.
Using crutches is great. People try to help by opening doors and offering to carry objects that I may have with me. In the supermarket I have been using their electric carts. I need to do it. I have delayed or postponed some shopping because all the Disabled Parking places were filled.
So far my memory testing has gone good. Nothing significant has shown up yet, but I expect a report on an extensive, brain MRI within another day. I have seen several doctors and next week I will be tested for 2-3 hours with various questioning and observations of memory retention.
"...A few year ago I met a group on the AT in GSMNP. One of the men was in business designing and setting up Braille Trails and Parks., where handicaped people could experience touching the bark of different trees and more of our surroundings. He was quite interesting.
"It cracks me up when I see seniors with canes who aren't even using them. .... What a pain it must be to carry a cane around all the time. LOL!"Some of us can walk OK at times, perhaps most of the time. But suddenly a knee or something else can give out and that is when a cane or crutch can be needed. This has happened to me while backpacking, but I have caught myself with a sturdy hiking stick. "You can't always tell a book by the cover!"
“Congratulations!Above there is a picture of my car in a Disabled Parking Spot at Deep Creek Trailhead in GSMNP.
“Aww.. come on Paul.. truth is?.. you can outhike most of us.”No way, TownDawg. I was unable to make it all the way to CS#13 near Gregory Bald to join your hike earlier this year. I'm slowing down and wearing out! However, after almost two months of hiking this fall I did manage the Thomas Divide Trail from 441 to CS#52 for an overnight and return. It was well over six miles going up as I had to backtrack about a mile to retrieve a fallen water bottle. Before starting in the morning I hiked out from Mt. Collins Shelter. It required a lot of determination and a second wind to get to the CS. Basicly, I did not want to have to do the hike again to add the campsite to my list of sites where I have stayed overnight. I have six more sites to complete at least one overnight at each backcountry campsite and shelter in GSMNP. Three of the sites can be reached only by water.
last edited: 12/08/05 9:28:46 PM”
“I got a wheelchair Thursday. At least I managed to get an icon of a wheelchair! It is on my replacement vehical license plate. Now, for the $10 extra in cost, I no longer have to worry about whether or not I displayed my placard.
Since I've heard most of your views about my situation, here are some views looking the other way. There is enough reading for several good evenings.
Disabled Drivers Questionare Results
Here are some views about people who park illegally in disabled parking spaces.
last edited: 6/09/07 4:33:19 PM”
“i dont know if this has been brought up before, so i will.
now that you have a disabled parking permit, please park in the disabled spots. if you park in a regular spot, youre essentially taking up two spots: the spot your car is physically in, and the disabled spot that the rest of us are not allowed in. so please dont get this misguided sense of "im a backpacker, dammit, im only using the handicap spot when im really tired". it would only be making it worse for others”
“Nowslimmer I didn't know of your situation I rekkon I should read more of the threads huh? But anyways I sent you an invite to the Lost Cove trip and I did not mean it as a joke I just didn't know.”
“NS, Glad you got a chair now. I still have a rental...need to get my own wheels.”
“You can believe me, cRaSh BaNg, I'm using the disabled spots. But sometimes there are none. And on some of those times I have returned home to avoid using a regular spot. It's too dangerous to drive the store's electric cart out in the open lot!
I'm ASHAMED and love it.Hikin Mike - No wheelchair, "At least I managed to get an icon of a wheelchair! It is on my replacement vehical license plate."”
“Spam - Thanks for your invitation. Hope you enjoy a great trip. However, I'm getting ready to go a long, road trip with one of my daughters and a granddaughter.
I'm still hoping for some more recovery for my knees. Perhaps I'll have a chance to work on them during the fall.
last edited: 6/09/07 7:35:48 PM”
“cRaSh BaNg - Hope you're enjoying things over there.”
“I have a wheelchair in the trunk of my car, and a wheelchair emblem on my plate. I walk short distances with a cane so I really don't need the wheelchair . My weak right arm makes a wheelchair useless on a grade anyway. I do ride the powered scooters coming back to my car.”
“youll be on the AT in a segway in no time!”
“I'm still hoping for some more recovery for my knees. Perhaps I'll have a chance to work on them during the fall.
last edited: 6/09/07 5:35:48 PMâ€ť
during the "fall" eh? that sounds weird, LOL! no falling aloud!”
“Pamela - I have taken lots of falls in the woods and on the trails for many reasons. But I try to land safely and exhale as much air as possible, while on the way down. Martial Arts Training probably has saved me several times from injuries.”
“gotta roll with the punches, right? yeah, i'm pretty good at falling too, that's why i've only broken something once, my foot got in the way during the roll. oh well, i was very young and i healed just fine.”
“yo Nowslimmer............Come and visit me here at Mt Rogers...........We will drive to Scales , elevation 4600ft and camp with a view of Mt Rogers and Pine Mt and Wilburn Ridge.
You gotta come up this year and see us.........”
“Watch out for Fridgy, he has some wicked 'shine!
Campsites for the Disabled.
“I'm sure that you'll be glad to learn that I have been enjoying some of the Campsites for the Disabled. I've done so at the Grand Canyon, Deep Creek, Mt. Pisgah and other places.”
“Are the rangers at Big Creek still hauling you firewood?”
“thank you for telling me.”
“So they put ramps around obstacles and have extra large bathroom stalls and you don't have to do the labor? Is it like being inside without the building? Must be nice to get out and get some fresh air.”
“who is "you"?”
“you is now slimmer.”
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