Car Shopping With Ankylosing Spondylitis - Not As Fun As It Sounds :)
My husband needs a new, actually a gently used, work vehicle. Why, oh why, do I not have patience to deal with used car salesmen? Is it because I am already in pain when we arrive at a car lot. Add walking around the lot looking at different vehicles, to an already wore out spine, feet, and hips and you get me at my worst.
I realize it’s not really the salesman’s fault. I understand he is trying to sale a vehicle to earn a living. He may have a family at home that depends on him. I know he has no idea what I am experiencing. That is one of the biggest issues with an invisible disability. People can not see all the degeneration going on in your spine and hips. They only see your outward appearance. I’m sure my face reflects my pain but unless you know me, you may mistakenly see my facial expression as grouchiness.
I know many of us Ankylosing Spondylitis sufferers have disabled parking placards. In my support group, many of the younger members have had people comment on their use of the placard. I personally haven’t experienced this, but my 81 year old mother is usually with me. I’m sure people think the placard belongs to her. The ladies who have been the target of comments have some outrageous stories. One lady overheard a person say, “since when is fat a disability”. Another said a person walked up to her and stated, she should be ashamed to use that handicap spot when people with disabilities need it. The stories go on and on. I assume these outspoken individuals have never heard of an invisible disability. Personally, if I’m having a good day I don’t use my placard. On the days where I am hurting, or know by the time I finish grocery shopping I will be in pain and exhausted I use my disabled placard.
I hope invisible diseases get much more attention in the press and on television. It is only with awareness, people will understand what an invisible disability entails.
This weekend my husband and I will continue our vehicle search. Maybe I will educate a car salesman on AS and other invisible illnesses. Haha! Probably not, since I usually try to avoid them like a plague. I can not stand to listen to their pitches. All I need is price and mileage. I hate when a vehicle has 190,000 miles and the salesman says, oh that’s nothing in this day and time. Yes it is something! It’s wear and tear on transmission, motor, and all mechanical parts. You can see why my husband and I drive our vehicles until they are past dead. I hate car shopping with a passion.
Wish us luck this weekend. May each of you have a pain free, fun weekend.