Parking Placard or Not?

Parking Placard or Not?
I thought long and hard before asking my doctor for an accessible parking placard for my car. I’ve never wanted to be considered different or “handicapped.” And because I look perfectly healthy, it was easy to pretend I was fine when I wasn’t. When fatigue was an issue, I chose to stay home if possible. Plus, I feel better when I walk. Some days, I’m actually capable of walking a good distance (although what I consider a good distance is merely a short stroll for a healthy walker). Recently, I walked nearly 2 miles with a friend! But here’s the thing: Those 2 miles were way more than I should have walked. It was evidently a mistake in judgment on my part, and I paid the price the next day. I know I have a limited amount of energy and that I need to pace myself. I clearly did not do that. The problem was that I was walking with a healthy friend who is capable of walking twice that distance. I was also distracted by our lively conversation. Plus, I wasn’t wearing a watch. Not until I got back to my car and collapsed did I realize how much I’d overdone the exercise. Even driving home from that walk was an effort. I could hardly lift my foot to the gas pedal. So, here’s where the parking placard comes in. If, hypothetically, I needed to make a stop on the way home (say, to pick up a prescription), I would have needed to park close by. I would also have needed an electric scooter at my destination. If one wasn’t available, I would have gone home without what I needed. Once my legs start to wobble, I know it’s time to sit down. After falling a couple of times, I’ve learned that lesson well! And then there are other days when walking is totally out of the question for me. Days when I awaken with fatigue so severe that I can hardly prope
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  1. Donna Amato says:

    Yes, many take advantage of all things. I was diagnoised with fibro in 2003, born with scoliosis from birth that has gotten only worse in time. Also , deg disc diorder involving my entire spine. I to had hemmed and howed about getting the card. Thinking of the seniors or wheelchair people. But came to the conclussion just because you cannot see my disability and i look like a healthy woman, inside my body was shattered. I only used it wheb 100% necessary. Do not feel guilty using it and if anyone says anything take them asside and tell them it was recommended and what is wrong. Some will be so apooligetic some are just ignorent.

  2. Mark Grubbs says:

    I have been denied a parking placard. I have not fallen yet. I do not use a cane normally. I do lean heavily on the cart when I get my hands on it. I was asked to take 5 steps in the dr office and then denied. DMV says you must not be able to walk 100ft unassisted.

    • Christine Lynch says:

      If you do fall, or even if you only feel in danger of falling in the future, I would bring the topic up with your doctor again. You might point out that it’s way more than 100 ft. to the milk in the grocery store. It’s a marketing ploy stores use to get customers to walk past many other items they might be tempted to buy. You might also gently remind him/her that severe fatigue can cause wobbly legs which can put us in danger of falling.

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