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Disability Life

It Rained Today

It rained today. I like rain. Most people I know dread an overcast rainy day. I’ve given some thought throughout today as to why I like overcast days. It’s not something I’ve experienced my whole life. When I was younger, I often saw rain interfering with fun activities in my life.

Two reasons came to mind today. The first is a memory. The second is a bit more complex.

Just prior to my accident in 2001 that left me a quadriplegic, I spent six months living and working in Belfast, Northern Ireland. I rented a flat about a mile away from the office. I walked to and from work every day. And every day I found the sidewalks wet. Dry pavement on my way to work was a rarity.

I had two CDs that I would alternate from week to week and listen to on my way to work. After a month, I started judging my pace based on where a song would start and where I was on my walk. I found walking to and from work, and everywhere else, in Belfast extremely pleasurable.

Nowadays, every once in a while I experience a dream that relives that walk. Come morning, I wake with quite a bit of nostalgia. I believe I associate rain and overcast days with my time in Belfast.

For the second reason, I think it has something to do with how much time I spend indoors compared to when I was an able-bodied person. Most of my activities don’t revolve around the outdoors so rain can’t spoil the fun.

When it rains everyone tries to avoid going outside. Perhaps, in an odd way, I feel more included with the rest of the world. Not because I avoid going outside, but because outside doesn’t represent the able-bodied activities of my youth anymore.

When it rains people don’t play outside. They don’t shoot hoops. They don’t kick the soccer ball around. They don’t rollerblade. They don’t bike.

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