Once, I was speaking with a chatty elderly woman when she told me about her neighbour’s complaints.
Apparently, her cumbersome medical equipment made a ratchet on the stairway as she walked up and down. The building superintendent had spoken to her several times even as he understood that she had no options.
“It’s just so frustrating to hear these complaints when I can barely breathe, let alone control the amount of noise I make climbing up and down the stairs.”
“My goodness,” I pictured the scenario and wondered what could have been done. Lower level unit, perhaps?
She went on to describe the monstrous instruments and what they were for, a devastating and embarrassing illness I couldn’t even dream up on my worst day, and yet, as surely as the body part and function did exist, so did the disease.
However did you get this disease, I wanted to ask. Instead I said, “I never imagined such a thing existed. No wonder you’re having such a hard time receiving empathy from those around you.”
“Oh, trust me,” She chuckled. “I was in my thirties when this happened to me. Before that, I was blissfully ignorant of a lot of things.”