Friday, June 08, 2012

disabled?? that's a tough one

recently i read a post written by Barb at Diabetes Advocacy. in it, she talks about Diabetes as a disability, and whether or not it is.

She has been advocating for her son, who has Type 1, and diabetics all over Canada.  working to get the government to better understand Diabetes, and all its ramifications.  

One of the things she has had a hand in is the Disability Tax Credit.  This is a tax credit that is offered by Revenue Canada to those who have a severe mental or physical impairment which markedly restricts the basic activities of daily living and/or need and dedicate time for Life Sustaining Therapy (Therapy that must occur at least 3 times per week for more than 14 hours per week).

I have never thought of myself as "disabled".  I have been Diabetic for 37 years and have never used it as an excuse.  When I was younger, and in school, it was never mentioned.  never did i get out of a test or exam because of it.  back then, the only method of testing your blood sugar of course was using urine.  there were no meters at that time.  i actually remember one time, in grade 9, i was wandering the halls looking for a pop machine, because my blood sugar was dropping and i didn't have anything on me to bring it up.  a teacher saw me, and demanded that i get "back to class" or i would be brought to the principal's office.  thinking back, i should have asked her to take me there, he may have had some candy or something in his office!!

i never really thought/think about diabetes being a disability.  i just go about my business.  i've never really given much thought to what i do, and haven't really considered that what i do isn't "normal', because for me it just is. 

i have had the forms sitting on my table for the Disability Tax Credit for quite a few months about a year now.  not sure why i haven't filled them out and sent them in.

i understand perfectly that i am entitled to whatever monies may be owed to me.  i realize that i "fit" all the qualifications.

i guess i just have a really hard time getting my head around the word "disability".  when i think of a "disabled" person, i picture someone with crutches, or a cane.  perhaps a blind person, or someone in a wheelchair. 

according to Websters Dictionary, "disabled" means, "incapacitated by illness, injury, or wounds; broadly it is defined as "physically or mentally impaired". 
and according to Websters "impaired" was "being in a less than perfect or whole condition:  as disabled or functionally defective." 

well i guess then i am disabled.  my pancreas in "functionally defective".  it's definitely "less than perfect". 

i guess i better get out the forms and get at 'em! 

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