Priority Seating Doesn’t Include My Lap!

I am sitting here feeling pretty miserable today. Humidity is at 94% and outside it’s alternating between snow and rain. We’re supposed to get up to 3-5 inches of snow, but it’s also been warm the last few days so I doubt that’s how much will be on the ground.

On top of the humidity, I had a fun bus experience today.

Okay, it wasn’t fun at all.

Despite being deserving of the priority seating on the bus, I generally sit towards the back. It’s warmer back there and is often easier to navigate due to seat arrangements and whatnot. It also usually basically empties out at the stop before my stop for work, so that’s always nice.

Today, the little old lady that rides our bus wasn’t around, so I took her usual spot in the priority seating area. She usually sits on the side with three seats, which means she can rest her bag in the middle until/unless someone wants/needs to sit there. I made the decision before I really realized how much pain I was in. As I sat there, I swear I could hear my hips and knees crying out in agony. I was so grateful for that seat.

And then, he got on the bus and decided to sit in the middle seat on me.

I’m against a short wall, so there’s really nothing I can do to get over. As soon as he sat down, I basically had to stand into a short squat and sit down again to even get him off my lap. Like, somehow he didn’t notice he was practically sitting on me and the gal in the third seat. And it was pretty obvious.

I spent the rest of the bus ride (about half of it) debating whether standing would be more comfortable. I knew there was no way that would work.

I get that I’m a bigger girl. I take up more space. But I’m also a woman who is generally forced to make herself smaller than she really is, on the bus or elsewhere. I shouldn’t have to sit sideways to ride the bus to work.

I thought my body was screaming at me before. Now it had a megaphone. I ended up getting off at the stop before mine because I just couldn’t take it anymore. Even then, I had to pull myself out from under him a bit.

Is there a nice way to say to someone that they’re hurting you? Or that priority seating doesn’t include my lap? Or squishing someone who is sitting there specifically TO NOT BE SQUISHED??

Honestly, I don’t know. I love riding the bus and, save a few weirdos, it’s a good experience generally speaking. Perhaps I just need to find my voice and stand up for myself. I can’t help but wonder, though, if he would have sat there if I looked more disabled.

On a happier note, I am excited to go spend the holidays with some family. More to come on that soon!

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