Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Transfers Are Not Easy

Some time ago, my friend Mike opined that it would more likely be the loss of ability to get into my truck which ended my driving life, rather than the loss of the ability to drive. It is becoming increasingly apparent that he is right about this, as he is about so many other things surrounding my situation. I wish I could thank him for being right, but alas, I cannot. It's one of the things I have learned in life; nobody thanks you for being right, especially in a bad situation.

My arms are becoming increasingly weaker. It's not that there is a catastrophic change, nor even some tipping point. It's that things are getting more and more difficult, things like getting into my truck. These days it's a 50/50 thing as to whether or not I can do it alone. I need Katherine to give me that final lift onto the seat half the time. Even when I do not, it's not as if I lift and transfer any more. My 240 pound bulk ensures that. These days I more drag my sorry carcass from surface to surface.

When I do this with my truck lift seat, I am now compelled to get halfway started, then use the steering wheel as a pulling point to yard myself out of my wheelchair and onto the lift seat. In that process, I can feel the dead muscles in my ass fold over the bones of my hip and legs, making a lump along the way. Once I am on the seat, I adjust so the muscles unfold. It's an odd feeling.

Other transfers are getting tough. Once again, I use the word transfer lightly. It's no longer a lift and go, but a slide and shift. Getting into bed absolutely requires a transfer board. Getting on and off the toilet has become an all to real adventure in body shifting and pulling. The worst part of all of this is my damnable wheelchair cushion. It forever rolls up underneath me, becoming a blockade to my efforts, the lump forcing me to pull even harder.

I said there wasn't a tipping point. I may be wrong about that. There may be something, some event, some particular transfer which goes horribly awry, perhaps one where I slide off of the toilet and the wheelchair moves, one where I end up on the floor, yelling for help and cursing my inability. That may be the event which truly proves I am done. That may be the insult which tells me it's over.

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