Ashtyn is awake and as I spring out of bed, for the first time ever I take her in my arms and give her a traditional, non-adapted hug. She can slide in my arms quite easily without the wheelchair in the way and it feels very nice to hold her so close.
By this point, I would do what any person does when they wake up — go to the bathroom. With nature calling, I can easily walk into my tiny bathroom. Gone are the days of swinging from my Hoyer lift onto the bedside commode, since the bathroom is too small for even a Hoyer or little chair to get into at all. Instead of taking 10-20 minutes of moving, it takes a minute and then I’m up and in the shower.
Mind you, this is the first shower I’ve had since I was a young teenager that did not involve shower chairs, Hoyer lifts, or other assistive devices. A 30-minute process is reduced to five to ten minutes and I’m much cleaner because I’m not having to work around a shower chair to scrub soap on my body, nor do I have to work against uncooperative limbs that don’t want to bend or move to get under my arms, behind my knees, etc.
After my shower, for the first tine since age 15, I get dressed unassisted. Again, I am amazed by how short the process is. A 15-20 minute process is five minutes tops minus gelling my hair and brushing my teeth. Of course, I may just pop a cap on my head and be off after a quick brush through my short brown hair.
After getting dressed, I’d be able to lift my son up in my arms and give him a hug. We could go outside and maybe hit a baseball around. I could pitch the ball to him instead of having to have Ashtyn do it. We’d be able to take Oliver on a walk without worrying about his leash getting tangled in my wheels.
Then I’d be able to hop in the car and go to the supermarket or out to eat. I wouldn’t have to worry about special equipment such as a van lift or hand controls. I’d be able to hop in the passenger side (only because I don’t have my license) and get out of the car only to walk into the store or restaurant.