Monday, January 23, 2012

In a power chair you can move mountains- almost

It wasn't until I got a power chair that I realized the unsung potential of many pounds of steel when it came to solving some independent living issues - such as moving heavy objects from one location to another.

I confess I've also used my power chair, nicknamed The Beast, to move furniture on occasion. But that's rare. The spaces I inhabit generally have an open floor design - things are pushed against the walls, leaving whatever room there is - and as every wheelchair user knows, there's never enough- to roll through. However, it does happen that a visitor or even an aide leaves forgetting to put a folding chair away or moves a heavy object that's right in the middle of the room. I quickly learned that such problems can be taken care of easily by my power chair. In fact if I angle my power chair correctly, it can even fold up a folding chair, make it cry uncle and toss it onto a pile of laundry.

This would all fit nicely into a Monty Python skit.

But the everyday tasks, those moments when as a quadriplegic I'm alone and I realize that I need to "get at" something in a heavy box, or move an object closer, is when I fully appreciate my power chair. Today a box of work was delivered. The UPS guy nicely dropped it in my front hallway for me, but I needed to work on it and I needed it near a light. I powered up the Beast, angled myself behind the box and pushed it quickly and efficiently right where I needed it. Didn't have to wait for an aide to come over or yell at a neighbor or make yet another wish for a robot. I'm already using machine power for better independent living.

A manual chair can be used in this way too. But it's much more impressive with a power chair. You can move - mountains. Not really. But almost.

No comments: