Blogger Widgets Ender-Chan's Thoughts: 1000th Pageview Special: Pity Poem Problems and Personal Gratitude

Friday, November 21, 2014

1000th Pageview Special: Pity Poem Problems and Personal Gratitude

Scroll down for the actual post.

“Forgive Me When I Whine” (Unknown)

Today upon a bus I saw a lovely maiden with golden hair;
I envied her—so beautiful, and how, I wished I were so fair;
When suddenly she rose to leave, I saw her hobble down the aisle;
She had one foot and wore a crutch,
but as she passed, she wore a smile
Oh God, forgive me when I whine,
I have two feet –the world is mine

And when I stopped to buy some sweets,
the lad who served me had such charm;
he seemed to radiate good cheer, his manner was so kind and warm;
I said, “it’s nice to deal with you, such courtesy I seldom find;”
He turned and said, “Oh, thank you sir.”
And then I saw that he was blind.
Oh, God, forgive me when I whine,
I have two eyes, the world is mine.

Then when walking down the street,
I saw a child with eyes of blue;
He stood and watched the others play,
it seemed he knew not what to do;
I stopped a moment, then I said,
“Why don’t you join the others, dear?
He looked ahead without a word,
I realized –he could not hear.
Oh God, forgive me when I whine,
I have two ears, the world is mine

With feet to take me where I’d go,
with eyes to see the sunsets glow,
with ears to hear what I would know,
I am blessed indeed.
The world is mine Oh God, forgive me when I whine.
My faith teacher read this poem to us in class and I had a real problem with it. It draws too much on the idea of inherent lack in people with disabilities. The descriptions of the featured disabilities are generally pitiful. One of my classmates mentioned that it would be awkward to read this if a blind student was in our class. In the poem, the persona says "I am blessed indeed. \ The world is mine." Can we not also claim the world as ours too with the abilities we have? 
However, I kept in mind that this is the view of a typical person lacking in understanding of the disability world. They were probably taught to pity, so I mostly went with it. I still found it unsettling because it implies that people with disabilities don't have anything to be grateful for. I find this idea to be untrue, even oppositional to the idea of diversity. For example, I'm sure that amputees are infinitely grateful for their prosthetics and the technology needed to create them. Adaptive devices are empowering, not pitiful. 
The Bible says that God uses people and their disabilities to do His works. Whether that is a miracle of Jesus, an example set through a person, or a model of value of human life is up to God. God is all-knowing and good; thus, he has a plan that will work for the good of all and the individual. Sometimes, what seems like a curse is a mercy in disguise. I don't know where I would be if I wasn't autistic, but I wouldn't be the nonconformist, perception changer, or overall person I am now.
Then the Lord said to him, “Who has made man's mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? Exodus 4:11 
Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him. John 9:3
I am grateful for...
...the salvation Jesus gave through His death and resurrection, which I accept as the Bible tells it and only as the Bible tells it. Without it, I would be doomed to fall into eternal fire and brimstone. If you are not a Christian, do not leave hate comments. I respect your right to believe what you do, but please respect mine as well.
...the resource program at my school that enables me to excel to my full potential. With the services, I feel like I can climb higher without fear of crashing.
...this amazing, diverse, and accepting blogger community. I, being one of the youngest bloggers to contribute to the linkup, feared being shunned due to my age. 
...the good food, adequate shelter, fresh water, loving family, and other basic things I take for granted so often. autism. I know it seems like a bizarre thing to be thankful for, but bear with me. Without it, I wouldn't be the diversity-loving nonconformist I am today. It helps me to put into perspective that there is no real "normal" standard for human beings. Normal is mundane, boring, overdone, average, run-of-the-mill, and unexceptional. I want to defy the norm, change perceptions, and help to form more positive opinions about autism, disability, and being human as a whole. I have always loved music and seventh grade was when I worked up the courage to take up an instrument. I knew someone would look down on me for starting late, but I knew that haters would hate. It made me more confident and pushed me to actually thrive. 
...the Internet. It's a world in and of itself where people exchange, debate, and spread ideas. It's a powerful tool to utilize, so use it wisely!
...biology lessons. I'm surprised that people think this class is boring when this is life. This is what makes you,!!! It's amazing how complex cellular respiration is when it creates ATP (adenosine triphosphate), the main source of energy in cells. If you have ever slept through a lesson on cell division, think about this. Skin is never more than a few months old. Without cell division, you wouldn't have new skin. That means your cuts and other injuries would never heal completely or properly. 
...freedom of speech. Without freedom of speech, I would live in fear if I disagreed with the government. 
...the ideas of kindness, acceptance and diversity. Without them, where would this community--or anyone, for that matter, be?

1 comment:

  1. You do have a lot to be thankful for and you are an amazing young woman. Your insight is invaluable. We can all learn so much from you, especially us parents of kids with autism. I must admit though, that I can't stand it when people tell me what I should be grateful for when I do whine! I remember being here before now, Anna. I'd love for you to link up at "Faith, Hope, and Love " sometime!


Comment! I won't know what you have to say unless you say it.