I live in a world that is not always wheelchair friendly. Yet, I’m creative and usually find ways around it. Still, sometimes, a situation can surprise me.
Several weeks ago, I was working late. I hadn’t eaten and was very hungry. On the way home, I decided to get a piece of pizza. My neighbourhood pizza parlor is not wheelchair accessible. It has steps up to their door. Undeterred, I waited for a customer to come by. I asked him to let the counter staff know that I wanted a slice of veggie pizza.
Surprisingly, the customer came back to the door with a message, “Go home and order your pizza by phone”. I was speechless.
At home, I went on Facebook and messaged the company privately. They responded right away with an apology. They said they would speak to the manager and he would get back to me. I received no follow up call.
One thing I learned in my life is that everyone has their story. When we listen and respond with a compassionate heart things become easier… instantly.
There may be many reasons why I was turned away. These are my top three reasons (based only on my speculation):
1) Staff was not able to leave the counter unattended and come to the door.
2) Staff misunderstood my order because I only wanted a slice.
3) Staff were inexperienced and did not know the best way to deal with my request.
I did not get my pizza that night but I learned to be kind.
There is an Amish proverb that says, “Instead of putting others in their place, put yourself in their place.”
What a beautiful world we would create if everyone responded with an understanding heart!