I am at home.
I am supposed to be in New Orleans.
On leaving this morning to go down to catch the bus to the airport, I lifted my leg to put it on the footrest and then tragedy struck. My wheelchair began to lean to the left and then with barely a wimper, died. I was panic-struck. WheelTrans was coming to get me, I was going to meet Manuela at the airport to fly down to do a presentation at NADD, we had flights booked and pre-paid a hotel room (to get a lower rate). I saw a fun trip disappear. I saw money fly out of the window. I saw hours of trying to get myself mobile again.
Everyone was understanding. Manuela was very cool about it. Joe, whose birthday we were going to celebrate in the Big Easy, was great about it. But sometimes I feel the burden of others 'understanding' hard to bear. I simply wanted to get about getting there. But I knew it wasn't going to happen.
The wheelchair company promised me something by the afternoon but then a wrenching call told me that they were having trouble getting a chair with the kind of tires I like. I talked to someone I know here at the building and ended up with a mechanic type guy in the apartment saying, 'I think I can get this going again, can I take it with me?' He called much later, saying, 'This is a little more difficult than I thought.'
So, I got on the phone and started calling wheelchair stores. People were nice, I've even got a guy whose going to go through their warehouse to find something for me. I'm grateful but my anxiety is through the roof.
What next, I don't know. Life is sometimes incredibly difficult. I know that things will work out the way they will. But until then, I worry. Constantly.
Oh, Dave...that's got to be a terrible feeling. I would think it's all the more frustrating since you've been trying to avert this very situation by setting things in motion for the purchase of your new chair!
I hope a new set of wheels shows up soon so you can get back to getting on with things.
From an earlier blog of mine (this may help you in the U.S. sometime, I don't know if they are available in Canada):
One possible backup is Scoot Around, a service that will deliver wheelchairs and scooters to the airport when there is damage, at the airlines' expense.
I've not tried them, but they sound worth a try for emergencies like this. They have all kinds of wheelchairs available. I'm sorry I didn't read this before and hope you're well on your way.
You would be just as understanding if the same happened to someone else--please don't feel like you're inconveniencing others because these things just happen and other people have delays or missed trips because of other causes.
Oh yeah, looks like they're North America and UK, not just US. :)
I'm so sorry.
How frustrating. So sorry!
Bummer. Why do things like this always happen before something fun? I'm sure you're feelings wouldn't be as strong if you were on your way to an annual colonoscopy, for instance! Hope it all works out quickly.
How frustrating! I hope you get what you need to get moving again very soon.
Happy Birthday to Joe. May your celebration be a happy one no matter which city you happen to be in.
I can't help but notice that even in such a stressful situation, Dave, your sense of humour is there - the leaning tower of me - great title.
Things are always a bit more difficult when dealing with a disability, no doubt. I enjoyed reading some of your posts, and will check back. I've linked to your blog on our site, and hope you'll check us out and consider created a link section on your site too. Take care.
I too have many understanding people in my life and I'm thankful for them all. Sometimes I feel like a burden also and I wonder if everyone would be so understanding if I didn't have a handicap. They probably would be so I guess my negative thinking is just something I have to work on. My energy would be better spent on gratitude rather than on self consciousness because I need help from others. The truth of the matter is this, everyone needs help from time to time. So sorry you had the frustration of a broken wheelchair when you were trying to go on your trip. I relate to you so often when reading your blog. Thanks for the honesty.
that sucks about your wheelchair giving up the ghost. I hope you find a solution soon that has the tires you like. Sorry that you weren't able to go to the Big Easy:)
That is too bad Dave. I'm sorry the wheelchair picked such an inconvenient moment to give out on you.
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