A restroom takeover

This entry originally appeared on my disability blog, I hate stairs.

With school starting back, I must get myself organized so I can balance all of my duties. Keeping up with my academic reading is more important than ever because most of my classes are online this semester. My Web design projects are also a priority, not to mention social activities, fantasy football, and this blog.

To keep it all going, I will be posting updates on a schedule. In fact, it will be the same schedule that Mississippi State’s newspaper, The Reflector, uses. I will make biweekly updates, on Tuesdays and Fridays. I might still post in between these scheduled updates on occasion, if the subject is worthy.

The posting schedule should keep me going. And speaking of going, that is the subject of tonight’s post.

Being the big fan of food that I am, I don’t miss many meals. I’m on a rigid schedule for meeting my student attendant for lunch and a restroom break. On a typical day, I will pick up something from the Union and take it over to Student Support Services, my home away from my on-campus apartment, which is my home away from home.

There is a small wheelchair accessible restroom. It consists of one toilet stall and one urinal. I hate using the stall so much that I normally back my chair up against the door to keep people from coming in (I stay in my chair and use a small urinal). It worked for a long time. But yesterday, my assertive “hang on…” was not enough to keep a particularly desperate patron, well, hanging. I realized I was going to have to move away from the door when he eloquently replied, “I needa get in there, man!”

As much as I like to be alone in that small bathroom, save my attendant, I am going to start using the stall. But at least it’s a men’s room.

The dark side of being out and about with my Mom is that, in the event I have to use a public restroom, it’s going to be for women. There’s not a chance that Mom is going to walk into the men’s room and risk seeing a guy taking a leak out in the open. And the accessible stall is always in the very back. It’s like a march of shame, with little girls asking their moms why I’m in there. Twice. Entrance and exit.

It’s the simple things in life that I don’t take for granted.