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Approached by a Stranger...

9 times out of 10, I will always look for the best in a bad situation.

But not today.

Over the years, I've become quite used to people staring at me in public, or approaching me with random, personal questions.

Slowly but surely, my confidence has grown and I no longer feel obliged to respond.

It's just a wheelchair. Get over it.

Last week I was in Tesco, minding my own business, when I felt a tap on my shoulder. As I turned around, there was an older man stood beside me.

His first words were: "I'm sorry to disturb you, but..."

Straight away my heart sank. My instant thoughts were: "here we go again!"

He proceeded to say: "I think you should follow my page on Facebook so we can have a chat... can I give you my number?"

Before I had chance to respond or even question what the hell he was on about, I was then handed a piece of card.

A shot of Ross's hand, holding a small piece of paper in Tesco, with the text: "Miracles happen when you pray in the name of Jesus". Followers by a mobile number and Facebook page details

As I looked down, the first words I saw were "Miracles" and "Jesus".

My instant reaction was to laugh.

This guy thinks he can "cure" me, PRAISE THE LORD!

The whole situation happened so fast, I definitely didn't hang around for long after that. Of all the strange experiences I have had over the years, this was definitely a first for me.

For a split second I debated whether to shove the card back in his direction, but the devil on my shoulder thought this story was too funny to pass on - so I kept it.

On reflection, there are definitely things I wish I had said at the time.

In my opinion, the creepiest part was the fact he had approached me from behind with the card in hand. How long had he been watching me before coming over?

Although I thought it was funny at first, the novelty soon wore off and I couldn't believe how inconsiderate and rude this gesture actually was. Just because I use a wheelchair, you think I need your prayers or a miracle?

Jog on mate.

A few days later, I decided to message this man's Facebook page, as it was playing on my mind.

Screenshot of the messages shared between Ross and the 'Miracles in Cornwall" page. Ross's long message describing how insensitive and inappropriate it was to be approached in this way

Screenshot of the reply, apologising to an extent.

Whilst I'm glad I got the chance to stand up for myself (no pun intended) - his ignorance still remains.

When posting the original photo, I debated whether to block out the personal information on his card or not. But the more I thought about it, this man never thought twice about making me feel uncomfortable or embarrassed, so why the hell should I?!

The moral of this story is simple: just keep yourself to yourself - no questions, no stares.

It's really not that hard.

In sharing this post, I hope we can all learn something from today - as what you may think is an "innocent" gesture or comment, may have a much bigger effect on someone else.

I think we all just need to be a little bit more mindful.

After all... "every little helps!"


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