Loss. Arms. Legs. Memory. Doesn’t need to be disabling. My dressing stick is my arms. Enables me to open doors. Tuck myself in. And getting personal, assist in toilet duties. The hook at the end is genius. Great for zips. Belt holes and for pulling up and down.
I shuddered when I read about the Irish Paralympian, #PatrickFlanagan, whose wheelchair was destroyed in airport transit en route to #Tokyo2020. “My chair is my independence and to be left in an oversized airport chair is degrading”. Quite.
My wheelchair has been damaged on numerous occasions. If you get a window seat you can often watch in real time as the wheelchair is hurled into the cargo hold. I can walk short distances. I can’t wheel myself so any chair will do. If I lost my dressing stick. Absolute devastation. Just once in my life. Meltdown. I have three sticks left. Two fold and can fit in my pocket. One is straight and remains at home. Need to make do for life. Always on high alert when I am out.
Later this month we host a webinar on living with dementia. Can’t begin to understand how scary when you can’t trust your memory. Especially when you know. Rights as a valued customer and member of the community should remain undiminished. Loss should not lead to lower expectations. Don’t let it please.
Off to the loo with trusted dressing stick. Too much information I suspect.