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Polio's Opportunities

There is no question that Polio was a bad thing and it made life more difficult for all its survivors. However, unlike most major crippling diseases this one may have given as much in return as it took away.


I have implied, as have many others, that Polio survivors are a breed apart, but maybe they were just normal humans given not normal opportunities at an age when the words impossible and acceptance had little meaning. All of the survivors grew up when disability was a dirty word and very few accommodations were made for us. We adapted and our best proved more than adequate.

I have met a lot of Polioer's and I am no more different from any of them as anyone is to the general populous. So, I am not trying to blow my horn nor bring out pitiful feelings, but I am going to note some things that have happened in my life that Polio did not stop.

Try to close your eyes for a moment and disregard that a Polio survivor did these things. Where can be seen the image of crippled or disabled or handicapped? We did not see them. Sure we had to adapt but who doesn't in life? Think about this one. About one person out of every 200 million in the U.S. becomes President of the U.S. but the average for Polio survivors is about one in every 5 million.

All of us had obstacles but we got around them.
All of us had more than our share of opportunities but we took advantage of them.
All of us faced crisis through our lives and did a good job dealing with them.
Some of us face new problems now but we know what to do about them.

So, give me a ..... rahrah ..... but NOT ..... pitiful

Please pardon my grandstanding but sometimes I have to look back at some successes to realize that things are not bad now and that more successes will come.

There is another thought that comes to mind. FDR began a public awareness of the disabled and brought those people out from behind closed doors. Then Polio survivors carried the torch further by bringing to light the public value of the handicapped and the need for a little consideration of our physical needs. Some of the advantages we MSer's and other limited people have today is in part due to Polio survivor efforts.

So, to summarize my Polio experiences:

I like where I have been,
I like where I am,
I would not change anything,
It is who I am.
GB & hog

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