maybe it’s just me. maybe it’s the extra 30 pounds i’m lugging around. maybe my chair is about halfway between crap and the best, but man, wheelchairing is hard work. i’ve been using the chair in the house lately, mostly just to see what kind of difference it made in how i felt tired-wise at the end of the day. (not much difference). and i took it to the library yesterday, and found that as accessable as the spankin’ new facility is (tho the handicapped stall in the men’s room was stuffed full of t.p. and i didn’t dare use it – disgusting), i had to stand to reach top or bottom shelves, or to get a good look-see at the cd collection. what do people who can’t stand do in those situations? and how do you carry anything? anyway.
my son drove me there, and left me off at what i thought was the main entrance. i had called to make sure the entrance was accessible, and was told it was. so he dropped me off, and i managed to get through the non-automatic doors to find a short staircase, and not the elevator i was told would be there. so i wheeled out, and around the corner and labored down to the real main entrance, where there was an automatic door, stairs and a ramp, but no elevator. a very nice man pushed me up the ramp, and from there, i could elevate to all the other floors. and aside from the bathroom and reaching top and bottom shelves (and the fact that the catalog computer was at standing height), the place was very friendly.
but still. wheelchairing is a lot of work. i don’t think i’m that out of shape. maybe bigger wheels or tires make it easier to roll over carpet? and fatter push-rims with some texture or grips on them would be nice. but if i go back, i’m going to take my crutches. as tiring as those are, and include the risk of falling, i think they will be easier overall than the chair. there’s a really good chair or scooter on my list for if i get to a place where i’m in it all day. for now, my “karma” chair does 90% of what i need, and the walker and crutches can fill in the gaps.
but man, wheelchairing is not as carefree as it looks.