To the Person Who Left Me a Rude Note After I Parked in a Disability Spot

You left a rude note on my car that said, “Handicapped? Low life!” after I parked in a disability spot. Even though I had a disability placard in my car, it’s clear you still didn’t believe me.

Instead of being upset by it, I would like to take this moment to educate you and to advocate for everyone living with an invisible disease.

I have an invisible and undiagnosed rare disease and so do my three children.

Even though I don’t walk with a limp, every single step hurts.

Even though I’m only 43 years old, my body hurts and I wouldn’t wish this pain on my worst enemy.

Even though I don’t have a name for my undiagnosed progressive, aggressive osteoarthritis in my distal joints, my hands hurt and there is no medicine that makes the pain stop.

Even though I have a torn capsule in my left hip, I refuse to have another hip surgery due to the recovery period.

Even though I have temperature intolerance, I still have to walk in the freezing cold and the intense heat with fatigue and pain.

I could go on and on about why I have a disability placard or why I have it for my children, so I shouldn’t feel like I need to defend it. However, I felt bad having to explain to my three children why someone would be so mean to us.

I actually felt sad for you. I felt sad that there is a person in this world who he thinks someone would falsely put up a disability placard in order to get a good parking space and would take the time to write a mean note.

I’m proud of my disability placard, and I appreciate it every single day. It’s a badge of honor because it proves I have doctors who believe my pain is real and that the pain my children experience is real as well.

I truly believe your note says more about you as a person. This is why I continue to advocate for my children and for all rare and undiagnosed children. We live in a world where people judge you by the way you look. We live in a world where doctors don’t always believe you when you tell them there is something wrong with your child or with yourself.

As a mother of three undiagnosed children and being undiagnosed myself, I will continue to advocate until everyone in the medical system and the public understands what it feels like to live with an invisible disease.

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