I have struggled with walking my entire adult life, but I have also fought to maintain my independence. I love to travel, but I have learned that I have to do things a certain way so that I can travel. I always prebook a window seat so that I don’t have to get up and down for people beside me, I am never late for boarding so that I can get on the plane in the preboarding so I can sit down and not have to get up until the plane lands.
I was flying to visit my daughter when the boarding agent came to tell me that they were moving me to an isle seat to accommodate a group of people. I said immediately that I had prebooked that seat for meadical reasons and that she would have to move me to another widow seat, if not at the front of the plane as my preference is than anywhere would do. She said that the plane was full and I would have to sit on the isle, I again said that I had prebooked and paid to do so because of a disability and that this was not acceptable, my complaints were ignored even though I was sitting there with my walker.
During the entire flight the “group” that I had been moved to accommodate were getting up and dow to visit each other as they were seated throughout the plane. I spent more time standing in the isle then I did sitting down, I almost fell down at one point but was lucky enough that another passenger caught me, this same person generously gave me their seat as they saw what I was going through. I spent the first three days of my vacation with my daughter in bed because of the inconsiderate and complete ignorance of the person who was assigning seats at the gate and the flight attendants who should have helped me and the passengers who were making me get up and down continuously throughout the flight seeing what was happening.
I wish this was a rare occurrence but I have been knocked down by people who were in a hurry, I have had people complain that I don’t walk fast enough, I have actually had someone complain to my manager that it was unpleasant to see me working when I was in pain, “can’t they just get rid of me”?