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When I Imagine Disability in the Afterlife

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I don’t know what happens when we die.
You could tell me your beliefs and I’ll listen,
But at night I will still have my uncertainty and infinite amounts of possibilities.

When I was a child, people told me about heaven.
I pictured it as a weightless place filled with clouds where spring was constant
and pain was a stranger.

When people told me about heaven they said they saw me walking. Running. Free.
As a child, I did not understand why this image sat like a stone in my stomach.
Suddenly I was in a museum staring at a painting that everyone adored,
but all I saw were blurred colors that left me uninspired.

It wasn’t until I grew older that I realized people saw me as trapped.
My chair seemed more like a problem rather than the inaccessibility of the society I live in.

They saw my disability as prevention to my true happiness.
They saw what I am now as just a shell.
As if I am living only to die and be free of what has made me who I am.

When I die,
I hope they see my chair and I blitz through the sky with raw cosmic energy.
I hope my wheels turn into the rings of Saturn.
I hope the stardust that I splatter into their eyes makes them realize that I have always been free.
I have always been free.

Getty image by Merydolla.

Originally published: December 10, 2019
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