On Being a Cripple

Mairs breaks down the meaning

of the words handicapped and disabled and comes to the conclusion that she

would rather be termed as a cripple. She states, "Whatever you call me, I

remain crippled" (241). "As a cripple I swagger (240), is said before

this. These are two examples of her not being mad at her current condition,

but making the best of it. This puts the reader in a good mood, and makes you

Nancy Mairs then goes on to address the questions that have been

around in the readers mind since they read the first paragraph. How did she

become a cripple What are the conditions of her disability Mairs reveals

here that she has multiple sclerosis, and goes on to describe the disease and

its characteristics. She has had it for ten years and has lost the use of

her left hand and much use of her left leg. She also has a blurred spot in her

right eye and is usually extremely fatigued. These details are necessary for



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