One Year with my Walker
One year ago today I made the decision to use my walker full time. I made that decision to preserve energy and (hopefully) prevent additional future catastrophic falls.
What a year it’s been. Transitioning to full time walker use has been... a lot. It’s been heartbreaking and a relief. It’s been a nuisance and a big help. It’s been hard and it’s been natural.
My walker now feels like an extension of me. It feels like a spare set of limbs, ready and able to support me 24/7. Yet sometimes I look at it and my blood boils and I want to throw it away. It feels like a bully, following me around and calling attention to my progressing Friedreichs Ataxia. It feels like a friend helping me get through the day.
My walker has given me a freedom I didn’t realize I was lacking. Yet it’s taken away a lot of little things I never thought I’d miss.
I am thankful for my walker. I am thankful for my village that made this adjustment smoother than I anticipated.
I have been pretty open about my journey with my walker. And I have been fairly optimistic and positive in my updates. Now, the time really has come for the walker milestone I have been most dreading - using it around the house.
I'm bumping into/catching myself on walls, furniture and people multiple times an hour. And I've had a few falls the last couple of weeks. All in the house. It's getting bad. I just need to accept it. The walker will be a hindrance and it will be difficult to get used to. The hard/ frustrating/ unmotivating thing about walkers with FA patients is... it doesn't HELP me walk. Walking is hard with or without the walker. But it just keeps my walking a little bit safer. It helps prevent another big fall by offering stability and something to hold onto. It's help that I need to accept.
I keep hesitating and putting it off by saying, "I don't want to become dependent on it, and if I use it around the house, I will. I will loose my independence and need it 24/7." Well, I've progressed to the point where, ya, I probably should use it 24/7.
Thanks to God, the transition to using it in public has been ok. I don’t use it when I have Kyle or my parents with me, but I use it pretty frequently. It’s not that big of a deal (yet). I was always using the stroller or shopping carts or people anyways. So the transition was fairly smooth. And then I always got to come home and feel normal because I could walk around unassisted.
I just don’t know how it’s going to work at home. Many of you are parents - you know how every day is. It’s so much walking around busy, cleaning up, carrying things, carrying babies... I don’t know how to do that when my hands will be occupied pushing a walker. Could you imagine going through your daily routine at home pushing around a Target shopping cart...? It’s just weird. And so frustrating because I don’t WANT any of this! I don’t want to get used to a walker. I apologize for being whiney. I'm just so frustrated to be at this point. And I just really don’t like FA.
Please pray for me. For grace and acceptance. Peace and normalcy. And most importantly, that they #CureFA