Opinion

Life in the instant world for those who must wait

[As someone with cerebral palsy], the word ‘wait’ has major meaning in my life. People out there with no patience, who need everything right now, listen to this:

My life is like the Big Ben clock: Always precise. If it is thrown off for a split second, things go awry.

Alex Lytwyn, 28, lives with cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair, but he has not let his disability limit him. He graduated from Assiniboine Community College in Brandon, Man., and has written two books in the past three years. (Supplied photo)

The word ‘simple’ is supposed to convey the feeling of carefree and at ease. Very rarely do I experience this feeling.

The word ‘wait,’ however, has major meaning in my life.  People out there with no patience, who need everything right now, listen to this:

What would happen if you dropped the TV remote and could not change the channel for hours?  You wait, and watch whatever is on that channel, until someone can pick it up for you.

Lying in bed is enjoyable for most people.  What if you wake up in the middle of the night and cannot fall back asleep, turn over, or get a glass of water? You wait, till you fall asleep or your staff shows up to help you out of bed!

How about when you’re super thirsty, go up to the table to drink some of your lukewarm drink and the straw falls on the floor? You wait.

Or how about sitting in your winter jacket for hours at a time?  You want to watch the local hockey game, which ends at eight but staff don’t start until 11. You sit in your jacket and wait.

These are some aspects of life that I deal with on a daily basis. 

This is just the hand of cards I was dealt. Yes, there are moments in my life when frustration sets in. Waiting does suck at times, but there’s not a darn thing that can be done about it. 

Just sit back and think for a second: how different would your life be if you had to wait? 

Everyone in today’s society is so goal-oriented in getting their daily tasks done in the quickest fashion. One day, I would truly like to experience this feeling. However, the fact of the matter is that this will never be the case. 

Nowadays, we all have some sort of schedule to follow, whether it’s work, school or hockey practice.  

My scheduling is the same, yet different.   

Do you know how many times you will go to the bathroom during the day? Probably not. When you have homecare for only certain times during the day, your life becomes pretty “routine.”

You could say my life is like the Big Ben clock: It is always precise.  If something happens to the clock that throws it off just for a split second, things tend to go awry.

Yes, you do the same tasks every day.

But even though a person in my position may not have the same type of busy activity in their life, there’s still the same, if not more, scheduling.  

Some people might think that it can get boring. This is not the case. Your brain always has to be on, and you have to understand who and what surrounds you, to make sure you live life the way you want to.

By no means am I complaining.  All I am saying is that next time you have to wait for something, be thankful for the simplicity you’re able to enjoy in life.

Alex Lytwyn is from Winnipegosis, Man. and he has cerebral palsy. He is a graduate of the business administration program at Assiniboine Community College.

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.