STILETTO – a high pointed HEEL on a woman’s shoe or a small dagger.
WHEELS – a medieval instrument of torture or a vehicle for personal mobility.
Seven years ago, I was assessed by Wheelchair services and given a voucher to purchase a self-propelling wheelchair – odd, given that my assessment showed I had neither the strength nor dexterity to propel myself (read here) but hey, gift horse and all that…
From day one, the wheelchair I ended up with was all ‘Pete Tong’. Within a month, I had fallen out of it and broke my leg – a nightmare experience for me, read here. Today, someone turned up to ‘service my wheelchair’. You can only laugh! So, where were they for the past seven years?
Apparently, only required to service electric wheelchairs until this year. Blown out because the chair they thought I had was not the one I had, they had to leave to check what they should do. When I mentioned that I thought I should get another voucher after five years, they had ‘no idea’ if that was correct. From the beginning of the conversation, I was irritated. By the end of it, I was, strangely, incandescent with fury. It wasn’t that big a deal was it? What was with my inappropriate anger?
I did know my anger was generic not personal - directed at the numerous public services representatives who have so palpably let me down, on so many occasions, in the most vulnerable and painful moments of my life…and not just me, others too. I have been truly disgusted - on almost every contact over a twelve year period to date - at the shambolic and inadequate services provided at vast public expense to the most vulnerable and helpless in our society … and I do not mean me.
To clarify, I am appalled by the – ludicrously poor and unsatisfactory – support I have received but I am not alone and have resources to fall back on – not everyone has such options and I burn with fury for those who do not, knowing how diminished my quality of life would be without them.
A consequence of my personal experiences is that I find any contact with inefficient, bureaucratic, insensitive public officials quickly taps into a deep well of anger inside of me. This anger surges up from my gut and rips loose when presented with any, even minor, evidence of failings in public services that I encounter. I have little success in hiding or containing my ire even when I know it is disproportionate in relation to the incident of the moment.
I know I should consider how best to deal with such inappropriate, misplaced, irrational anger but, frankly, I can’t be a**ed - it’s just so much easier to try and avoid public services altogether … it’s not like they make that difficult, is it! Thank goodness that, mostly, I can do that … my sympathies to anyone who cannot.