Friday, June 6, 2014

A New Wheelchair!

 photo accb4f5b-5cc0-4bcf-b482-b647c10ae5c9_zps9f90e909.jpg
 [Does this not look like a picture of Austria? I snapped this photo on the way to Spokane yesterday.]

If you had asked me ten years ago what kind of things would excite me at the age of 34, I promise I wouldn't say wheelchairs (or new hospitals). But we never know where life will take us, do we? And life has taken me to a place where a trip to Spokane for a wheelchair consultation is extremely exciting!

Elisabeth and I hit the road early for the familiar two hour drive. I estimate that we have made that drive easily 100 times in her little life. I don't mind, not in the least. The openness of the land as well as all the agriculture along the way just makes me happy. Remember that time years ago where I talked about it being my favorite landscape? Still is.

Whenever I head to Spokane I prepare some snacks for the road. This time I took slices of my absolute favorite cheese in the whole world, No Woman Cheese, along with a pear. I chuckled to myself while I was eating, thinking how gourmet it was compared to my old snack of choice: m&m's and corn nuts. But, if you recall, I am not eating chocolate this year. And we all know what happened the last time I had corn nuts! So pears and cheese it is.

But enough about snacking, back to the topic at hand - wheelchairs.

Elisabeth got her current wheelchair shortly after she turned two (see this post). Let me tell you something about that chair, I despise it. It is so wide and soooooo heavy. In reality, I am pretty sure lifting it caused my back injury in 2011 - which sent me into surgery. And aside from its weight and size, it simply doesn't support Elisabeth properly. She slides forward in the seat so that she constantly slouches. And because of her scoliosis she ends up tipping over into this little gap on the side next to the wheelchair frame. So to keep her from getting stuck I have to stuff it with pillows and such. It is quite ridiculous considering the price tag of the wheelchair exceeded seven grand - it should offer better support than that.

So it was time for a change, time to get something that will better fit Elisabeth. And boy oh boy, are we getting the wheelchair of all wheelchairs! Get this - because Elisabeth is so severely deformed they are going to make a mold of her back to create a custom seat that is her exact shape. She will be so much more comfortable! As it is right now, the top of her hunched back turns red from contact while the left side of her back never even touches the seat. Also, her crooked back causes her hips to twist, meaning that one side of her doesn't even sit down. But her new seat will allow full contact. Oh, and here is the best part of all: because Elisabeth loves to sit Indian style, they are cutting the base of the seat more triangular, so that it will be fitted towards the rear and come out towards the front, allowing her to pull her legs up.

Now isn't that something to get excited about?!

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