Take a minute … and relax.
It’s been a fraught few weeks of numerous solo hospital visits, as my wife was first dealing with a dying father and then helping to organize his funeral, estate, and her own turbulent emotions. Her mum had died only four months ago.
Then, last Monday, some good news: The electric wheelchair that I’d just passed the driving test for was to be delivered that Wednesday. Well, actually, a phone representative initially informed me that an engineer was coming round to change the hand control’s figuration. That would be something of a waste of time seeing as I don’t have the electric wheelchair yet.
“Oh, we must be delivering it then,” she said.
“Are you sure?” I asked.
I was to phone back on Tuesday to see if it would be a delivery in the morning or afternoon.
Obviously, I would reorganize things to make this possible. Was she really sure? I would have to reconfigure my week just to be able to open the front door.
I’d be alone in the house on Wednesday afternoon. I spend most of my time in our first-floor bedroom because I can get down the stairs, but it is my equivalent of rock climbing. I don’t dare to do it without anyone else in the house. To be able to open the front door, I’d need to wait in the hall — compared to me, an ancient shambling retainer is Usain Bolt.
I usually write this column on Wednesdays, so last Monday when I finished my other work, I had to get stuck in. Monday and Tuesday turned into two 12-hour working days. That’s something that I regularly did when I was able-bodied, but not something I’d recommend for those of us who should build in fatigue breaks.
The representative I talked to was able-bodied. I know this because I phoned the company again to see if they had any disabled office staff. As a company that exists to help disabled people, surely it would help to have some office staff who are also disabled. They’d understand that the “simple” opening of a front door can be like mounting a military operation!
The representative’s youth was blamed. I blame the company.
The engineer turned up Wednesday morning, rather than the as-promised afternoon slot. Still, I didn’t have to go downstairs. That was a relief, as even my “shatters” were shattered! Unsurprisingly, he’d turned up to change the controls on a machine he hadn’t delivered yet. I don’t think even wheelchair technicians have mastered tachyons. It’s probably just a matter of time.
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