It's the Small Things that matter.
This week, we've been having great big discussions about things that push people's buttons. Those big picture issues - institutions and sheltered workshops and special schools and who is allowed to speak on another person's behalf. The issues that make people rage and burn and spit and report other people's innocuous photos for pornography breaches to Facebook (although my topless son DOES have weird nipples).
I had to stop and take a break then, because a Small Thing just happened.
My daughter rang to tell me to ring Suzie at Qantas with my wheelchair height. Her number is 0282222651. The reason my daughter rang me is that one day, a disability agency booked a flight for me and they took my next of kin details and put it down as a contact detail. Shaye lives in the city, two hours away, and wouldn't have the faintest idea when and where I am flying somewhere. Why did they list her as a contact? Because the agency 'didn't know whether I could speak'.
The Small Things.
Another Small Thing, a few months ago, that annoyed me inordinately. A perfectly nice woman was asking me if I would like a Danish. We were at a person centred planning PD, and I refused nicely, telling her I wasn't too hungry and besides, I don't love pastries. They're too flaky.
'Oh!' she said cheerily. 'I have just the thing!' And she pulled out a single gluten free muffin, wrapped neatly on a plate, reserved for someone who couldn't attend.
No thanks, I told her. I didn't tell her why I didn't want it. I hate gluten free bread and cake products. They usually taste, as the kids would say, 'like arse'. I refused politely, even when she insisted. I smiled and turned around to talk to someone else.
When I got back to the table, there was the gluten free muffin, wrapped and smiling at me from my table. I looked over, and the perfectly nice woman was beaming at me with a motherly smile.
I wanted to throw it at her head.
The Small Things. They make you feel bad, because I don't want to throw muffins at people. I really like this woman. I didn't want to laboriously explain the story to Suzie, who was embarrassed on my behalf. I'm flying out in the morning and I'm hoping that the day will be filled with Small Things that are positive, not Small Things that make me want to hurl muffins and rage against the world.
All the Small Things.