My Experience in a Wheelchair

Meg's latest blog.

On September 21, 2015 I had surgery on my left leg.  I could not walk.  I was in two rounds of casts and in a wheelchair over a 6 week period.  I then went into a boot and was able to walk with a walker.  This has changed my family’s life!

When I was in the wheel chair for 6 weeks I needed help with everything, from changing my clothes, to getting everywhere in the house and outside, to bathing and all my other bathroom needs.  I also needed help transferring from seats and my bed to the wheelchair and even into the car.  I received help from both of my parents, my brother, my friends, and my one-on one companions.  It does take a whole team!

A typical day for me started when I had to text my mom from bed to help me get out of bed, without putting any weight on my cast leg, and getting into the wheel chair.  I then had to wheel myself to the bathroom down the hall.  I hit the doors and walls because it’s not so easy to steer a wheel chair!  The wheel chair did not fit through the door, so I had to hop into the bathroom and hold onto my mom.  My balance was not that great on my other foot.  When I left the bathroom, I would then hop out to the chair and wheel to the top of the stairs, lock it down, and hop to the railing.  I had to go down the stairs on my butt, keeping my left leg in the air.  Luckily, I had a different wheel chair downstairs to greet me.  I borrowed my grandma’s wheel chair for upstairs.  I had to hop to the downstairs chair and wheel into the kitchen.  My mom would back the chair down into the den (a lower level) so I could sit, with an icepack under my knee, on the couch.  I have a tablet and tv to keep me entertained.  My mom would bring me breakfast on a tray with my pain meds.   Then I would get dressed downstairs.  We would bring my clothes down instead of me going back up.  It was easier for me.  We also brought my toothbrush and toothpaste downstairs.  All of this every day stuff took a lot of planning!

Eventually I would hop over to the kitchen table to eat, and to the powder room, and to other places downstairs.  My leg got stronger.  My mom said my balance got better.  My mom took me out a little bit at a time.  I was able to push myself in the wheelchair a little bit more each day, so my arms got stronger.  I did not like pushing myself because I kept bumping into things and people! 

Being in the wheelchair made me feel trapped- I felt wasn’t getting out of it.  I’m used to walking everywhere whenever I want.  While I was in the wheelchair I had to depend on someone all the time to come to me and help me do everything.  I lost my independence.  I am very lucky that this was  temporary.  Some of my friends are wheel chair bound and now I have an idea of what it feels like.