I got a scooter today. I never thought I would purchase one. I used a scooter when I was in Paris (couldn’t have explored Paris without it!). My plan had always been to regain my ability to walk long distances so that I could go on long walks with my husband Jamie like we use to do or visit the Toledo Zoo, the Toledo Art Museum, the Detroit Art Museum and Meijers Gardens in Grand Rapids, MI—and my absolute favorite—strolling through Saugatuck, MI, an artists’ colony. I haven’t done most of these things in years. I’ve put my life on hold for the possibility to walk the way I use to, which I’m still striving to do. Striving to achieve that goal is and was not a bad thing but putting my life on hold was.
My pride and vanity kept me from enjoying more of life. I hated being pushed in a wheelchair. I did it so that I could enjoy some activities with Jamie. But as we both get older, it seems unfair to ask him to push me around, though I know he would gladly. I hate walking with a walker and/or my cane. I do it because if I didn’t I’d be stuck at home.
It wasn’t until I talked to my friend Liz, who also has MS, that I realized how much a scooter could change my life. Liz told me how the scooter gave her a new sense of freedom (she also uses a walker to get around). She could go places and do things without having to depend on someone pushing her in a wheelchair. She and her boyfriend go camping. How awesome is that?! They recently went to Myrtle Beach. And she wants to do the trails for the disabled at Sleeping Bear Dunes. She’s living her life and not letting her disability stop her. What an inspiration she is!
Now that I have my scooter, it opens up all kinds of possibilities for me. My friends have wanted to do so many things that require a lot of walking. I can plan to go now without feeling like a burden or that I will slow them down.
The lesson in all of this is not to let pride and vanity keep you from living your life. Accept help when offered! And use whatever mobility equipment you may need to help you accomplish your goals and live your life. Life is so very short. Do you really want to spend your time on earth afraid to meet people and explore the world because you can’t walk as far as others without help?
I purchase my scooter, but you can also rent mobility equipment (scooters, wheelchairs, walkers, etc.) if you need them for a limited time. Google: mobility equipment rentals and you should find companies in your area.
Because I will probably need a scooter for long distance venues, I purchased mine from a company that specializes in mobility equipment and accessibility solutions, but you can check out medical equipment companies, and if all else fails, Amazon. I would try to purchase it from a local dealer so that you can try the equipment to make sure that it’s right for you.
If you get a prescription from your doctor for mobility equipment, medical insurance or Medicare may cover it or reimburse you. Every insurance company is different. Please verify your benefits before you make a purchase.
I hope this inspires you to get out and explore the world around you.