Thursday, March 15, 2007

Wheelchairs, Speech Devices, News and Meltdowns

January 16, 2007 - It has been an eventful week. On the 10th I went to Crossroads for an Augmentative Communication evaluation. Basically, the appointment was intended to look at the various options I have for when I can no longer communicate verbally. The hardest part is trying to think far enough ahead to what I might need. They have amazing technology now with everything from a "switch" you can use by moving one muscle (in your foot, leg or face) to a "mouse" you activate by blinking your eyes...and even technology that actually scans what you are looking at and uses your "eye gaze" as a tracker. Of course, that all comes with the reality that at some point I will be "locked in" and unable to do anything but move my eyes...
Then on the 12th I went for a "wheelchair fitting" appointment. Again, the hardest part was even beginning to fathom what life will be like at the point when I cannot move at all..and what features I will need in a power chair (electric elevator for the legs? electric seat elevator so I can look at people at eye level? electric recline and tilt? what size motor? what size joystick? what kind of seat? what kind of headrest? footplate?) get the idea. A bit overwhelming.
Then this morning I found out that my mother's apartment caught fire. She is fine but she lost everything and now has no place to live. She is staying with a friend for now. I actually started for Texas today (driving) but turned around at about Franklin when Sharyll told me that the roads really are getting bad in Texas (Sharyll is there visiting her daugher and son-in-law).
On a funny note: Christopher was having a meltdown yesterday because Phillip left (he was here visiting and the departure is always a crisis for Christopher). Now, how did we calm him down?? Flipping on the TV, tuning in to the Discovery Health Channel and letting him watch "Critical Hour"....they had just gotten a sick trauma into the ER and were 'cracking his chest'. Christopher was Mother, like son...LOL! Love, Claudia

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