Wednesday, March 16, 2011

a chair....with wheels

When I mentioned the idea of a "wheelchair" to Dad he ducked his head and said they didn't need it. Somehow the idea of Mom in a wheelchair just seemed like one more step down the ladder, I guess. Still, Mom twists her ankle and "melts" into the floor often. She also loses her balance and is quite weak. She's been using the dining room chairs for the same purpose as a wheelchair, to scoot from here to there so she doesn't have to get up. It's painful to watch, though, because she moves about a half inch with each effort.

Dad absolutely can't take her anywhere, so I told him I'd check into a chair "just to get from point A to point B....a chair....with wheels." I met a great lady at the elderly appliances store who did all the Medicare paperwork and had the "transport chair" ready at no cost and no pain to us. The disease is bad enough, but to have to deal with Medicare, too, would be unliveable. Anyway, after this angel of mercy's quick tour we decided a transport chair would be the best choice. I have learned that a "transport chair" is exactly that---not to be wheeled around by the owner, but just with four small wheels to be pushed around. It folds up in a snap, has foot rests that easily pop on and off, is only 31 1/2" across at its widest point, and weighs nearly nothing. And it's in candy-apple red! ZZZOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMMMMM!! ZZZZZZZZZZOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!

I took it down to my doubting father and we put her in there for a spin. She acted like she it was Christmas morning. Much like a little one in a walker, she easily learned to push herself backwards and with a little practice can go forwards as well, and turn a 360! Although she gets hung up cutting corners too close sometmes, she smiled and smiled and smiled! That made all the difference in Dad's opinion and he has been fine with it ever since. He thinks she gets more exercise now than she did before she had it because she is always scooting around the house. One morning she got all the way out of bed and into her chair before Dad even noticed!

Of course, we get her up and have her walk often, but that can be kind of a big deal. If she wants out, she'll help herself out, but if she doesn't, she won't try at all and is dead weight. She really likes the chair! Now I need to build a ramp. It was nice to be able to wheel her outside to sit in the yard the other day in the sunny, wonderful weather, but on the way back in, she lost her footing on the step and sank to her knees. It was quite the trick getting her back up again and took both Dad and Allen lifting and me holding the door to do it! Anyway, she now has a wheelchair, and it has made her more mobile and happy than she has been in some time. Yeah!

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