Sharing the lessons along the way…

I will admit that I have some memory issues.  I often lose my car at the grocery store and am always looking for something I cannot remember where I put—keys, coffee cups, etc.  But, those are pretty minor, absent-minded professor-ish memory issues.

What cracks me up about my memory the most is how I forget from one day to the next how challenging something is.  I am not sure what part of “Walking was HARD.” that I seemed to forget from Thursday to Friday.

It is almost as if I erase how hard it was from my memory, and somehow convince myself it couldn’t have been as hard as it felt.  I don’t think this memory loss is always a negative, but it often doesn’t serve me well.

I felt confident that walking around the Homeless Emergency Project (HEP) with Duke would not be that big of a deal, or at least it wouldn’t be like taking both dogs for a walk.

I got there, parked in the handicap parking spot and decided which direction to go first.

Point A to point B seemed to be miles, rather than yards.  It felt like cars could have lapped the block in the time it took to cross the street.  Once I sat down, I didn’t want to get up—and I didn’t until I absolutely had to.

A person in a wheelchair icon

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Fortunately, that works for most of our time at HEP, but then I have to use the bathroom, get more water for me and Duke, and Duke likes to make his rounds.

I found myself wishing I had done what I had planned to do Thursday when the hard part about walking was fresh in my mind.  I was going to put the manual wheelchair in the car for HEP just in case it made more sense to use it.

But I didn’t.

And I wished I had.

It definitely made more sense to have used it.  Duke would have gotten to pee on more bushes and get more loves from more clients if I had.

The whole point of assistive equipment (walkers, wheelchairs, etc.) is to remove the limitations that mobility issues create.  They are designed to increase independence and freedom of movement.  I am not sure what part of any of that I forgot.

When it was just about me and the dogs, I couldn’t make the decision about taking the power wheelchair out for our walk yesterday.  I could rationalize that for one day.  At HEP, I realized I wasn’t just limiting my movement and Duke’s.

I was taking away opportunities for Duke and I to do what Duke and I are there to do.

Well, that isn’t ok with me.

I am sharing it with you so that I can come back to read it again when my memory fades again.

Anyone else out there “forget” such things and it ends up limiting you?


Comments on: "Wheelchairs for Memory Impairment" (2)

  1. Don’t beat yourself up for forgetting, it’s natural to forget the difficulties of situations and the pain of course. It’s our mind’s protection from experiencing it so we can dare to experience it again. Not sure I am articulating what I am trying to say but I know you’ll “get it”. Live and learn and I’m sure Duke and the HEP people forgive you for not being able to fully give them what you come there to give; your’s and Duke’s presence is of itself a wonderful gift.


    • I know what you are saying. I am not at all beating myself up. I found it somewhat amusing. It was eye-opening and is already remedied for our next visit next week.


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