Becoming a wheelchair user

For some people wheelchair use is a lifelong thing, but for others there comes a point where everything changes.  Whether it’s some sort of paralysis or a degenerative condition, many of us reach a point where the choices are to sit on the sofa/stay in bed all day, or use a wheelchair and get out and experience life as a wheelchair user.  When I reached the point where I simply could not get out of my home any more, I cried and then purchased a wheelchair from a healthcare organisation.  After the grief came the big realisation, the ‘where have you been all my life’?

Wheelchair

I campaign/moan an awful lot about poor wheelchair access and everyday ableism, and I still stand behind my assertions,  but here’s something I’ve yet to tell you about my wheelchair.  It saved my life. It changed my life in such a profound way I truly know I could not live, truly live without it.  Yes it’s a different life, maybe not the one I imagined when I was growing up, but by god is it exciting.  I went pretty quickly from being a virtual recluse, grounded because of disability, to getting back out in the world, if anything more than I ever did before.

I have spoken with many people in similar situations, either injured or just diagnosed with a ‘life limiting’ condition.  The thought of using a wheelchair upsets them greatly as they see it as a step back, and it really can seem that way at the time.  For my, my personal experience was anything but.

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My wheelchair was my second chance.  When I was diagnosed, and even before then when my body was falling apart, I had made my peace with what I thought were certainties in my life; that I’d never meet someone to love me and that I’d never have a ‘normal’ life. Fast forward several years later and I’m married to a man who loves me as I am and who I love more than words can describe.  Normal life?  Stuff that!  I go out to concerts, wheel catwalks, meet old friends and make new ones.  In short I do what I want and I bloody love it!

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9 thoughts on “Becoming a wheelchair user

  1. I'm going to show my husband this! He's in pain all the time, and is going out less and less. I've talked about a chair, just when needed, but he's not talking me seriously. I think he sees it, like you say, as a step back xx

    1. Hope it hits home sweets. Because I am a wheelchair user lots of people approach me with questions when contemplating using one themselves. I really do think that if you can live a fuller life with a wheelchair, you should do it, especially if it also helps with health issues and pain levels. In hindsight it's a no brainer but I know how I struggled with the decision at the time, only to then wish I'd have done it much sooner. It's one of the reasons I'm quite so vocal about it 😉

  2. This was great Vicky! I'm not a wheel chair user but I have a degenerative condition that has quickly taken a downturn in the last year and although I never thought I'd see myself in a wheel chair it has become a very quick approaching reality. Knowing how freed you feel I hope I can have the same outlook when the time comes.

    p.s. You look fabulous 🙂 x

  3. I am a wheelchair user lots of people approach me with questions when contemplating using one themselves. I really do think that if you can live a fuller life with a wheelchair, you should do it, especially if it also helps with health issues and pain levels

  4. The prospects of the life and success are accomplished and achieved under the prism and activities of the studies. It is the need of the students to acquire more and more knowledge for the better and effective life. The requirements are coined and put for the right order.

  5. My husbands powered wheelchair literally changed his life to, he couldn't do anything independent before. Sadly I need one and can't get seem to get one, so my day's are spent in bed. I'm hoping one day I'll be able to get out and move about again, can't wait for that day x

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