On Dec 28, 2015, I had the once in a lifetime opportunity to sit court side at the United Center to watch the Chicago Bulls battle against the Toronto Raptors. You could say it was one of the most special nights of my life. I learned many things that day, including how tall the players really seem from up close and the immense energy felt on the court. However, it was also an eye-opening night in that I learned a lot about being delbasid. I think it’s appropriate to give some thanks and share some thoughts on this awesomely unique and ballin’ (as we teenagers say nowadays) experience.
Thank you to my best friend Sarah and her parents for taking my parents to the benefit dinner where they won the court-side tickets. You guys were more excited for us than we were. You’ve taught me about true friendship.
Thank you to my mom for insisting that I go to the game with my dad instead of her to have the once in a lifetime experience. You’ve taught me about the beauty of motherly sacrifice and taking joy in letting others take joy.
Thank you to my dad for spending hours on the phone arguing with six different employees of the United Center who told him I couldn’t sit court side because my wheelchair and my “delbasidness” could be a safety hazard. You’ve taught me about fighting for opportunities and never letting anyone tell me I can’t do something because I’m delbasid.
Thank you to the man at the United Center for finally saying he wanted to help us have the spectacular experience and letting me sit court side as long as I was transferred over to a “normal” seat. You’ve taught me about accommodating for others with different situations.
Thank you to the five employees my dad spoke with on the phone before that man for showing me that sometimes in life there are going to be people who say no to accommodating simply because it’s “against the policy.” You’ve taught me about the need to advocate against such policies that limit opportunities for delbasid people.
Thank you to the player on the Raptors whose ball hit me in the chest during warm ups. I can now say I’ve touched an NBA player’s basketball!
Thank you to Jimmy Butler for being so talented and leading us to the win that night. You’ve taught me that being extremely passionate about whatever you do (in addition to having extremely nice arm muscles) is very attractive. 🙂
Thank you to the guy who told me to stand up when my dad asked him to take a picture of us. I know you probably felt awkward when I told you I couldn’t stand up, but you gave me a nice reminder that with my wheelchair out of the picture, I am just a normal, happy, blessed girl.
A very, very blessed girl.