Wednesday, March 26, 2008

You'll Take Advantage of the Nearest Mode of Transportation to Either High Five Me or Leave a Flaming Bag of Dog Pooh on my Front Porch

A proposal, AB 1940, that would allow handicapped parking spaces for all pregnant women was shot down in CA state assembly. I agree with their decision because of the classification that "all women in their third trimester - and up to two months after delivering their baby - [are] as "temporarily disabled.". I take issue with that and fall on the side of offended. I may not have been able to sleep during that time frame, and I may have had to abruptly halt trying to maneuver into an average bathroom stall and surrender to the larger stall designated for wheelchair use and extreme girth, but I could certainly walk. Well, waddle would be more accurate. In case the author of this bill isn't aware, the female body is designed to accommodate pregnancy. Albeit, uncomfortably, but designed nonetheless. Not like, lets say, an amputee. Limbs are not designed for removal. That's a disability that warrants convenient parking. I also understand that there are pregnant women who have medical issues that might necessitate such a need. I'm not talking about them. [Like, if you're pregnant with sextuplets. The female body was not engineered to carry a litter of fetuses. That was not nature, that happened in a doctors office and they all took. And now your body is saying "The hell?"] Although, I imagine those with serious medical conditions that are a result of their pregnancy are most likely on some kind of doctor ordered bed rest; and unless their mattress is located in their car, they shouldn't be driving themselves anywhere, anyway.

Also, in this modern era, you can have just about anything you need delivered to your house: prescriptions, dry cleaning, movies, dinner, and groceries just to name a few. It's what makes the Internets so sexy. That and easy access to porn. [I used the home delivery grocery service in the past. Not because I was restricted to my bed. I just thought it was kinda cool in a 1950's Lucille Ball housewife kind of way. Until they substituted my thin-sliced boneless chicken breasts with regular (higher priced) boneless chicken breasts one too many times. The kind that my children describe as "too chickeny". Once you tamper with my poultry selection because your employees are search impaired, then you relinquish your delivery fee and force me to step foot in your retail establishment]. If your pregnancy limits your ability to walk from the parking lot to the mall, then you have more serious issues than needing to pick up a few things. It is also rumored that walking may help move labor along. So strap on those Reeboks ladies. If your girth prevents you from entering or exiting your vehicle in an average sized parking spot; lay off the Taco Bell Nacho Bell Grande's. And if you park your SUV pregnant self in a compact spot, then you're just creating your own chaos. Really. Did you think that was going to be successful?

I'm so baffled by the "two month post-delivery disability" that I'm almost at a loss for words. Almost. What is the "disability" here? That it's a pain in the ass to wrestle a stroller out of your trunk and drop an infant into it? I realize that it takes a couple of outings to establish a routine. I understand. I've been that. But disabled? What about those of us whose kids are past the need for a stroller but still too young to understand that they need to keep a close eye on cars that might be backing out in a crowded parking lot? At least with a stroller the adult is in full control. The infant isn't going to suddenly dart from his five-point harness. And if he does? Start the enrollment process for MIT, right now.

31 comments:

Treasia said...

I agree 100% with you about this. In my book someone who is disabled is someone who didn't elect to get that way. Someone whom has become ill (not from their choosing), limbs amputated and such. Not a woman who chose to become pregnant.

HRH said...

Can I say the following and not be stoned in America: Abolish handicapped parking.

OK, I am still here so let me continue...As a physical therapist I noticed the strange phenomenon that the MORE handicapped a person was the less likely they were to use the handicapped parking. The LESS handicapped the person the more likely they were to hang the wheelchair sticker on their car, boat, rascal scooter, or have it tattooed across their face. I just think this handicapped thing has gone too far...

OK, I am off to steal from the poor, push over the elderly and take candy from babies...

Burgh Baby's Mom said...

HRH is on to something there. I have an Aunt that has severe arthristis and thinks she's entitled to handicapped parking, to the point she threatened her doctor if he didn't give it to her. Meanwhile, she's going to the mall and racing around every single store spending oodles of money. Uh huh.

I'll admit, I really did appreciate when stores had reserved spaces for my fat ass when I was pregnant, but it was pure lazy. Totally not a necessity.

tammy said...

I understand the idea behind this proposal, but like you I find the fact that they want to label pregant women & new moms as disabled to be disturbing.

Our local mall has a few designated spaces for "parents with young children (under age 5)" and I have taken advantage of it in the past. But it should not be mandated by the state.

THE MOM BOMB said...

Our local chi-chi grocery store has the nearest three spaces in each parking lane designated: Shoppers With Children.

I confess: I parked in one, once. Cuz hey: I have children! They just weren't with me at the time.

Angie said...

I concur with you Tootsie. I dont with HRH (Holly) altogether. There are very large parking lots and situations where the upfront parking is definitely worth while. Having a hubby with a new disability, I feel qualified to speak on this. Brian lost some of his right side function due to neurological issues and they ain't coming back, it appears. So, he takes a very long time to walk into a place. Having the parking placard at the hockey game in 5 degree weather recently was more than handy for him. I can run down the street or at least hustle. He simply can't. He wants to. At church or anyplace for that matter, when we are with the kids, we prefer to walk together as a family, not me and the kids 50 paces ahead of Brian. THe closer parking allows us to get into the building faster together withouth the kids dashing through a parking lot ahead of Brian. We don't always use the parking in smaller places or where there is a lot of elderly, but we do use it some. Believe me, we all wish we didn't have to.

KEEP BELIEVING

Melissa said...

Okay, I'll admit that at first? I thought this was a good idea. But Tootsie, you've converted me. Convincing arguments on all counts. Well done.

Melissa said...

I have a lot of opinions on this but I think I'll just keep them to myself. Very thought provoking..

debawriter said...

I think if the pregnant woman has a prosthetic limb or no feet, then she can go ahead and park in the handicapped spot.

But other than that, like you said, it's not easy being very pregnant walking woman, but it's certainly not disabled.

Deb
sandiegomomma.com

seachange said...

Tootsie, I agree with ya on all your points. :-) Especially the one that women are designed to be pregnant. It is not a disability to be pregnant.

I witnessed something the other day that just boggles my mind. It's a perfect illustration of how people abuse HC system.

I was at our local post office, which has only 1 HC parking space. I watched a young Mom with 2 small children driving a Subaru station wagon pull into the HC space. She reached into the glove compartment, pulled out a HC ID tag and hung it on the rear view mirror. Then she left the kids (strapped into car seats) in the car, RAN into the post office and RAN out of the post office with a hand full of mail from her PO box.
The Mom jumped back into the car, backed out of the space, while taking the HC tag off the mirror.

Was this woman HC? As far as I could see, No. It appears to me she's learned how to use the HC tag to her best advantage. Not to mention the fact that she left the 2 kids in the car aloone.

calicobebop said...

Ok, I confess - I used those spots at the hospital when I was going in for check-ups at the end of my pregnancy and for those daily newborn check-ups. I remember thinking "OH Thank GOD!" when I saw one. :) Because, I'm lazy! But, hey - at least I admit it!

Now I have a pedometer and am trying to find new and interesting ways to add steps. Back of the lot for me!

Cheri said...

Tootsie: Right on Sistah!

HRH: No, you won't be stoned, but I think what you mean to say is to abolish how freely the stickers/plates are handed out. Also, othing urks more than seeing the handicapped person's spouse in the car alone and using it for easy access to a boutique.

jennifer h said...

When I was pregnant with either of my children, I admit it was nice to find a store that had designated pregnant woman parking spots. But I wouldn't expect it, and I certainly wouldn't have used a handicap spot even if a law entitled me to do that. Ever. I feel guilty when I use the big bathroom stall, and always make sure there's no one in sight who needs it.

I agree that if there's really a physical problem in a pregnancy, a temporary, doctor-ordered, case-by-case, hangtag might, might be in order.

I just think it's a slippery slope to put a label like that on pregnant women, and I can't imagine too many women appreciating the designation. The ones who would? Probably steal the handicapped spots already. If we start saying pregnant women are disabled, then we're that much closer to having other choices made for us. Pregnancy was no party, but THAT makes me really, really uncomfortable.

Fannie Mae said...

I was more "handicapped" with a couple of toddlers than hugely pregnant or with a babe in arms. Just sayin'.

Mrs. G. said...

I'm just going to say it: we have become a country of lazy ass whiners who feel entitled to EVERYTHING. I feel much better.

OHmommy said...

Infants are a piece of cake.

LOL at MIT. Nice one.

Jennifer said...

Bravo! I agree 100%.

Okay, I may not be allowed to have an opinion since I've never been pregnant, but my mom has and she agrees with me. And not only did this 4'11" woman carry an 8 lb. 9 oz. baby to TEN months, she was still walking for exercise every day.

Maybe that's why she could wear her old jeans home from the hospital. Just sayin'.

Karen said...

Okay, the part of me that wants a parking spot reserved with my name (Fat, Lazy Mom) is all for this. But you're totally right. It's nothing more than laziness. If you can hike your pregnant self through the store shopping for hours on end then you can walk the extra few feet to get into the store.

Anonymous said...

The end of all my pregnanies was in August (8/22, 8/22 and 9/9), I always worked full time up until my due date and, had to walk from our 'loser lot' if I had a drs appt (approx 1 mile to my desk no exaggeration). One day my boss demanded that I get a HC spot closer to the door. OK. I was 40 (can you say surprise?) and was sick of hearing how old I was at the Drs. office so there was no waaaay I was going to use a HC spot didn't care if I went into labor on the trek in!

EatPlayLove said...

Wow...I love california! I suppose there are certain circumstances where that would apply, but most of the time if a woman is on bed rest, a closer parking spot is not what she needs.

In my lovely town in colorado we have two related parking options, one is mommy spots close in at the mall for preg-o and strollers.

Then, we have signs around various parking lots that tell you how many extra steps you'll take if you park further away from the door, to help get people moving. We park at those!

Sue said...

I think if men ever got pregnant, they would demand a handicap parking space just so they wouldn't have to haul their large-marge selves into the store from across a parking lot.

Women don't need handicap parking for when they are pregnant, but I will admit, the closer parking for women with newborns was a blessing.

SuburbanCorrespondent said...

If walking helped to move labor along, believe me, I wouldn't have been 12 days late with my 6th child.

standing still said...

Give me a high 5 for this one, Tootsie.

Since Child has had his recent experience with the shattered femur (and lovely accessories like wheelchair, walker and crutches, I am thankful that his Doc ORDERED us to use a HC hangtag.

The experience has put me in the mind that people who have legitimate significant differences in their mobility are dealing with enough obstacles (just try to open a HC accessible bathroom at our Mall of America while sitting in a wheelchair, um ... yea) so that a parking space closer and with wider accessibility is the LEAST we can do.

That said, people who misuse HC tags and spaces are wrong and should be questioned alot more often, hopefully by someone who rolls up to them in a wheelchair yelling, "Sister, what the hell are you doing in my spot?" I'm all for self advocacy.

Allie said...

A high five is definitely in order here. If I ever have kids and I get to the point that I can't maneuver my fat self in and out of stores...I just won't go. It's not that important. Plus there will be a man in my life that I will make go to the store.

Tootsie Farklepants said...

Whew! Glad to see I didn't offend anyone. I thought I might have a controversial post on my hands.

Sea~ It infuriates me when I see small children unattended in a car. Do people not watch the news?

Marlee said...

I love that IKEA has "Family Parking" spots right next to the handicap 'cause I'm lazy. ;)

Tootsie Farklepants said...

I'm all for private businesses doing what they feel is good for their customers. I'm against the government classifying all pregnant women as disabled and accommodating for it.

JCK said...

Great post, Tootsie! I'm with you on this. Although...I do still use the handicapped bathroom stall with my kids...even wrote a post about using one in church and whether I was messing up my chances with GOD.

Saying that a normal, pregnant woman is disabled is disturbing.

HRH said...

Cheri--thanks! That is exactly what I wanted to say. And to my dear Angie...I so wish you didn't need them.

Optimist said...

Rock on Tootsie! I know I could have used a bit more exercise when I was preggers. Shoot - I could use some more now. I get a little self-satisfied thrill when I park at the BACK of the lot these days!

Colleen said...

I honestly could've used it the first month after having Gavin because, well, he had a HUGE mellon and left my poor bottom with a 3rd degree tear and more stitches than I cared to count. By the time he was 2 weeks old, I had no one to help me at home (family lives in Indiana and Chicago), and still needed to shuffle to the store for necessities...frequently, unfortunately, since my sleep-deprived brain kept forgetting things, and the list, and once, my wallet.
But then, that would've fell into your preggo-with-exceptions.
Now, I totally appreciate the grocery stores with "Parents w/kids" spots...let distance for them little buggers to get away from you.