I am so ashamed of something I did earlier this week. I cut off another driver to get a handicapped space.
I didn’t mean to, honestly. I was coming up to the space on the right, and I believed that the driver on the left was only waiting for the driver in front of her to move so that she could find a parking space. I had no idea she was planning to park in that one and only handicapped space near the café. It wasn’t until she limped into the restaurant that I realized my mistake. I had selfishly assumed that no one else would have use for that space, and I took it.
In that moment of realization, I had so many memories flood over me. I thought about all of the frustration when I pulled up at the drugstore and saw that the closest handicapped space was occupied by a driver sitting in his car waiting for someone inside. I thought about all of the times I’ve been unable to use the sloped pavement areas to avoid tripping over a curb because it’s been blocked by a car in the fire line. I thought about emailing the principal at my sons’ school because the handicapped spaces in front of the after-school care had been filled up three times in a week by drivers parked illegally.
I don’t know how those drivers felt when they saw me limping past their cars. I do know that when I saw someone I had wronged, I felt very small. I was also ashamed of my arrogance, that feeling of owning that space that allowed me to ignore the person in need who had been waiting for it.
I sometimes make the mistake of thinking I’m the only person dealing with a setback, or dealing with a physical burden, or having a bad day. I need to get over myself and remember that I’m not the only occupant of this planet and take a moment to remember how my actions are impacting others.