Thursday, September 9, 2010
It's a bird, it's a plane...it's a trapeze....
The trapeze over my hospital bed has been getting a full time workout since I strained/sprained my hip last week. Here's a picture of it from underneath. A very useful item.
I remember the day I got it. It was around the time I received my hospital bed. My friends pushed the trapeze stand under the bed. After they left, I remember thinking that I didn't need it. I felt it was overkill. I felt the same way about the hospital bed.
I was angry when I forgot the trapeze was there and bonked up against it. "Don't need it," I grumbled. It was so steely and gray and ugly, I complained. So my friend put a tennis ball on the end of it to make me laugh.
Of course the first time I used the bed and trapeze to help me get in and out of bed, dressed, etc. I realized what a help they were. They have allowed me to be independent so many times.
Some of us with disabilities may feel when we first start using some equipment that we don't need it, even when signs point to a very strong need for it. Maybe we go from crutches to a walker or a walker to a wheelchair and we put it off despite people we care about telling us it would make our lives easier. At the time it can seem like a defeat or even giving in if we view equipment like that instead of seeing it as a tool for independence.
Looking back, I realize that many times the equipment I use every day that gives me independence are things I no longer even see when I look around a room because I'm so used to them being there. Like my trapeze. Whereas once it felt odd to wake up with a trapeze over my head, now I'm just used to it.
In fact, I'm so used to using it that even when I get a temporary injury, it allows me to maintain my independence. That's huge.
To anyone changing equipment or adding equipment , I'm writing this so you know you're not alone in going through these things. It can feel like you're the only one. It's not like you look around where you are and see lots of other people you can go up to and say 'Hey how was it for you when you went through this?' But there are folks out there who have gone through it. And many times talking to them helps, when and where you find them.
It's a bird, it's a plane....it's a trapeze....