Adventures of a Girl in a Wheelchair & Children at Church

Hi, friends. My church is small and rural, but a few months back, a lady began attending with her granddaughters, aged 6 and 10. I hardly remember how it escalated to this point, but those girls love me, and I love them. I’ve experienced some joyful moments as I’ve spent time with them and realized a unique way that we bless each other.

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S proudly displaying the chocolate icing on her face

The little one, S, is a ball of boundless energy who makes every other kid look tame by comparison. The older one, M, is more mature and thoughtful–she’s the big sister who, I imagine, has always looked out for S.

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I remember being M’s age like it was yesterday–old enough to have a conversation with a “grown-up” but still a kid at heart

When we arrive to church on Sunday mornings, S runs to me when she sees me, instantly asking over and over, “Can I push her? Can I push her? Please!” M likes to push, too, but her approach is calmer.ย She’ll ask ahead of time, “Can I push you to Sunday School class later?”

I’ve bought S toys and puzzles, but my wheelchair intrigues her more.ย [I still buy toys for S in the desperate hope of entertaining her for a few minutes. Five minutes can feel like an hour with a hyperactive child.]

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S: Take a picture of me; I look like a cowgirl. (lol)

I wouldn’t trade S for the world, but she can be a real handful. I’ll get tired of being aimlessly pushed around and suggest we go play or go eat a snack or something, but all she wants to do is keep pushing. Recently, when she wouldn’t listen to me and I actually needed to leave ASAP, I had to grab the wheels while she was pushing, causing my chair to topple backward on the floor. It’s happened to me before, so I knew what to do and wasn’t hurt, but S was sobbing because it scared her so badly. I hoped to teach her that accidents can happen when you don’t listen. In general, I’m trying to be a bit firmer, but I struggle to say “no.”

S has asked me several times why I use a wheelchair, but she forgets because she’s too young to understand. The other week, she made a hilarious comment.

S: *signs “I love you”* What did I say?!

Me: “I love you?”

S: Yes! I love you! *wraps her arms around my neck*

Me: Aw! I love you, too.

S: You know why?! Because you’re handicapped!

Me: *laughing*

S: Me and M aren’t embarrassed of you!

M: No, we’re not.

Kids say the darndest things, right? I think what S meant is, “We love you just the way you are.” And I love them just the way they are.

Thanks for reading!

13 comments

  1. Fun, yes. . . and exhausting.

    Your life is not your own with kids. Its theirs… even when they aren’t yours. Just be glad they go home (somewhere else) and give you a break!

    I love your patience with them. They will admire you and adopt your ways because of it. So will I.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. My, oh, my … all the things they are learning from you, and they don’t even realize it. Tolerance, acceptance, unconditional love, limits… I love that you are always thinking about them, even away from church, and finding little ‘prizes’ for them; that is so sweet , and that is the REAL reason they love you so much: you love them and they KNOW it !

    I also think that because you are seated, you look children in the eye; you are truly at their level, so they think you are a kid. ha ha! Love you being such a good example to them!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. All three of you are just the greatest! Everyone needs to learn to say what they want and need with all the love they have in their hearts. Teaching limits is hard work โฃ๏ธ

    Liked by 2 people

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