Type: Analysis
Pages: 4 | Words: 1069
Reading Time: 5 Minutes

In the first paragraph Nancy Mairs wrote how she decided to write an essay “On being a cripple” Here the reader finds out that the author herself is a cripple as she talks about her cane. It is very interesting to find out how such person lives from the person herself.

Next, Nancy explains why she chose to name herself “a cripple”, not “disabled” or “handicapped”. It is true that this word hurts more — brings you more awareness of who a person in front of you is. This is not a pretty word for sure.

Nancy says that the word “cripple” describes her condition more accurately, as she cannot use her limbs fully. If you call a person disabled or handicapped it is more polite, but not as precise.

She says that she will not call another person “a cripple”, this is the word she describes herself with. The society is not ready for this word and does not want a calamity over it. The world wants to shut their eyes and ears and pretend the problem does not exist.

She was not a cripple from birth, and she remembers very well how it is to be able to use your feet and arms to the full of their ability. It is probably harder for people like this to accept their condition than for those who were crippled from birth.

Nancy was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis at the age of 28. From that time on she received each day as a gift from life. Something that we, “normal” people are lacking is being grateful just for life itself, for ability to breath and walk.

In this paragraph Nancy describes some of the multiple loses that people with her diagnosis may suffer, and how it is very important not to lose a sense of humor in this situation.

Nancy has sustained some of the loses as well, but nevertheless she keeps on enjoying life, even though it seems hard for the person in such condition. It seems like she is full of enthusiasm and optimism.

The author talks about how her life is not a bed of roses, her disability and constant fatigues prevent her from enjoying life as normal people. The reader realizes that it is actually hard to live like this every day.

Nancy enjoys her studies and she does not complain she would rather do something else. She sees an advantage in getting the disease not at very young age.

Nancy talks about other things she is doing in life, how she has raised children, even a foster child, and how she does a lot of usual house jobs. It makes us admire the fact that she did not turn into a miserable person pitying herself, but she tries to take everything possible from life.

Of course, there are things that she would never be able to do, like running or going camping. As we see, there are two sides to every story.

She finds funny moments in not so funny situations, when she fell down next to the car, for example. Life is never completely black, or completely white — you have to remember that.

Nancy says she is lucky to have people around who understand her disability and make life easier for her. Probably not everyone has that, unfortunately.

It is the hardest for the family of a crippled person to be with her, and not many husbands agree to spend their lives with handicapped wives. It is even harder for children who cannot pick a parent.

Nancy’s family is supportive and loving and friendly. Isn’t it the most important thing in life even for a healthy person?

The thought strikes though that people are as kind to Nancy as they are, only because she is a cripple, not just because they love her and care for her. This thought is always at the back of her mind.

You have to compensate for your condition as the society expects you to, and be joyful and full of life and happy.

Fortunately, the family does not care much about her being good or bad cripple, grumpy or cheerful — the support of your family is the most important thing.

It is hard to be a cripple also because of stereotypes of how an ideal woman looks like and what she does.

Even though Nancy is a cripple it is important to her as to any other woman to know how she looks like. She did not particularly like herself as an adolescent, and she does not portray a pretty sight now, as she thinks.

But fortunately, being a wise grown-up woman, she does not hate herself, but a disease she is having.

The disease should not determine who the person is. Life is more than that.

Nancy talks about two disabled women she knows. One hid herself in her house and never goes out, her husband being there as her servant. The other is making the most out of what she has — she bore children, she travelled, she tried to make the most out of her condition. Attitude is everything!

The disease was scary at first, mostly because of the fear of the unknown, of the future. But isn’t it what every person on Earth fears — the future?

Fortunately because of the busyness of her life, Nancy was not able to think about her disease, to live in her misery. A good advice to each one of us.

Nancy tells about the vacation in California and how it is needed to take from life everything it offers, or there might not be another chance.

You can never get used to a disease, as much as you never get used to life too. You always lose something, but you have to just put up with it and look at the bright side!

MS is a disease one has to live is and fortunately in recent years scientist pay more attention if not to curing it, but at least to making life easier for MS patients.

Doctors cannot heal MS and they feel frustrated by it. Disabled people feel like doctors have to heal them. But doctors are not gods, and they have their limitations!

Being a cripple herself Nancy realized other people’s imperfections and hardships, she became softer and more understanding of others because of the disease she has to live with.

Would she take a cure from the MS if there was one? Of course, she would. At the same time, she would rather have a disease herself, than let somebody else have it.

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