Living and laughing with a disability - cerebral palsy; ordinary life, extraordinary circumstances.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Out and about...

I had to run to the store this afternoon.  We ran out of an essential item for then throne room.

I use to be bolder.  I was out and about all the time.  Going to the store was no big deal.

As I get older, staying home an going out seems more an more appealing.  I just don't like the hassle of my disability, for myself and for others around me.  Home is a controlled environment.  The outside world is not.

I drove to Fred Meyers in Wood Village.  I parked our Sprinter van far out in the parking lot.  I like to have room to run our rear lift, and to be able to pull out without backing up.

People drive crazy through parking lots.  I saw two vehicles driving opposite ways in the row I was parked in, and a third driving perpendicular across the parking spaces.  There was nearly a three-way crash right in front of me.  I wonder how many parking lot accidents they have there.

A drawback to parking that far out in the parking lot is having to ride my scooter a good ways through the lot before there is a curb cut to the sidewalk.  I know when I hear a car running to stop and wait until they back up, or until I know they see me.  It's not always easy to figure that out.  The car can be running for awhile, they are not moving, but I can't tell if they seed me.

I went in the store and grabbed one of the small hand shopping baskets.  I put it on the floor of my scooter.  I can get a decent amount of stuff.  If I get too much, as is always the temptation, stuff starts falling off the scooter...and that is not fun.

Motoring my way down the aisles.  I get that people need time to study what is on the shelf, but please make room for people to get by.  

When I come to the end of aisles, I have learned to creep slowly out.  I have had people run into me with their carts, and then look at me like it's my fault.  I wish stores had mirrors overhead to help with the end of aisle blind spots.

Reaching for stuff from the scooter can be hard.  I can't reach the higher shelves, so I often settle for the stuff I can reach.

I was reaching for a box of waffles (my breakfast of champions :)....).  A lady saw me reaching in vain. She came over and reached them for me.  So, so, nice.  Lot's of people are nice that way.  I hate depending on the kindness of strangers, but sometimes I need call down the independent bulldog inside of me and accept the kindness.

I went to check out and put everything up on the conveyor belt.  I was having trouble reaching to swipe my debit card, so I handed it to the clerk and she swiped it for me.  I was able to punch in my code today, but sometimes I need to ask for help with that as well.

Boring stuff, perhaps.  Getting older...I am 50.  Still working full time, so that gets me out of the house, as well as going to my son's baseball games.

Eric goes away to college in a month.  Another chapter.

It's just that I can foresee a day when I'm not out and about much, and that appeals to me more and more.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Today the sidewalk was blocked...and we were bummed....

Jodie and I are baseball parents.  We try to make every game that our son, Eric, plays.

Today we had a double header at Madison.  Eric played summer ball for them a couple years ago.  The only curb cut is on the corner of 82nd and NE Thompson.  We travel the street down to the busy corner, then ride the sidewalk back to the skinny gate and bumpy grass trail that goes to the baseball field.

Today the sidewalk was blocked...and we were bummed.

I'm not good with my phone camera, but here are some shots I took today:

I rode my scooter to the parking lot above.  No way in there.

This is the only ramp near the baseball field.

The sidewalk was blocked.

No curb cut near the gate.

We sat in the street watching the game from the outfield fence.  People kept coming by to check on us.  They missed having us with them to cheer the boys on.  That made us feel good.

Accessibility gets a lot of lip service, but it is not understood until you deal with it yourself, or with a loved one you are assisting.

For some of us, accessibility, or finding a way around barriers, is a way of life.