Looking for Silver Linings

I’m afraid it’s been another of those weeks, and my heart goes out to several friends who have suffered loss and bereavement, but I’m determined to find some cheerful silver linings and turn some of the bad news into good…

The bad news is I don’t have the time – or interest – to do the garden any more and so it looks like this ↗️.

The good news is it means I’m helping to save the bees apparently.

The bad news is I will have to miss my beloved Tuesday Zumba class for the next few weeks.

The good news is it’s because I’ve finally got some counselling appointments. And I hope to get my Zumba fix from another class or event.

The bad news is my ribs still hurt a bit.

The good news is I have a great excuse not to bother with the vacuuming. I have to ‘rest’ and not do activities that hurt me.

The bad news is the beautiful disabled friendly bungalows B and I saw this week are on sale in the wrong place, at the wrong time. Probably.

You see I’m coming under pressure to defer any house move for now. It is difficult to turn down the chance to live somewhere that B seemed to love (see photo above), with everything we need for the future – apart from a ceiling hoist – already in place. Admittedly I am not convinced by the location – it’s a 20 minute drive from anywhere we might want to go, and public transport is almost non existent.

The good news is we enjoyed a lovely relaxing afternoon in the country including a pit stop at the local cafe where we felt very welcome.

The bad news is I’ve been super busy this week, and am feeling completely overwhelmed again

The good news is that between all the appointments and usual madness I am managing separate outings with each of my young adults. Even if they are for activities like house hunting that may come to nothing!

Let’s hope that next week is better, and head over to Lakes Single Mum for more reasons to be cheerful.

R2BC at Mummy from the Heart 

Two toilets in One week! #R2BC

It’s been another busy fortnight with 16 appointments of various kinds, plus fun activities at the weekend, including lunch out with friends, which B now really enjoys. One of those involved our first time to visit a commercial Changing Places toilet and I was delighted with how easy it was to use.

B got a new lightweight GaryB Wheelchair Blanket for Spring (just seen in photo) as her legs get so cold so easily now that she needs more than a pair of leggings covering them when she goes out.

I’m injured, which means enforced rest and filling the time with other things to ensure my two youngest do more than just look at screens. Starting by volunteering at parkrun tomorrow, instead of running..

Today though was a very special day as B and I headed out to North County Dublin to the official opening of the new premises of the hugely successful Remember Us Club that provides a social outlet for some 200 disabled children and adults, as well as their siblings and families. In a stunning achievement, they have raised enough funds to buy and kit out a permanent home for the club and all its activities and events. And it also has a proper Changing Places toilet, so we had to check it out!

We also got to meet a number of families who used to attend the Rainbow Junior Arch Club that B and I have been spending our Saturdays afternoons at for the past 18 years… It was lovely to catch up, and thanks to R for all your help and support and bringing over some badly needed coffee…

So that’s it for this week, more reasons to be cheerful over at Lakes Single Mum. Have a great week xx

Remember Us opening collage

R2BC at Mummy from the Heart 

When carers have to rest haha haha

It was 10.37. The dishwasher was finally doing its thing, and it was time for me to crawl into bed with my tablet and catch a bit of Netflix and rest…

But tonight even the crawling bit was difficult. A suspected cracked rib means that almost every movement is sore.

You can guess what the recommended treatment is for a cracked rib: lots of rest. The one thing not available to family carers like me.

My own gut feeling was to Google compression bandages, as I’m trying very hard to keep the area rigid, but they’re no longer recommended as using them can lead to pneumonia.

‘Ouch’ may have become my favourite word, but the pain itself is not that bad, it’s the frustration that this injury resulted from housing and equipment that is less than ideal, and the consequences of this injury mean that I will have to give up most of the activities that sustain my physical and mental health. At least for a while. Normally a cracked rib takes about 6 weeks to heal, but how much longer will it take if I cannot rest? It’s a scary and depressing thought.

I may have to go to the GP if the pain continues to get worse, but do I ask for extra help with my disabled daughter? Will I get it? Do I deserve it when there are so many other people in greater need?

In the meantime my only plan is to look for lots of reasons to be cheerful, so watch this space…

 

 

Thanks Dundrum Town Centre #ChangingPlaces

One minute B was chatting and smiling at my friend and I, as we all enjoyed a leisurely lunch, and then my disabled daughter’s mood suddenly changed. That usually means one thing: she needs the toilet.

Normally I would make a mad dash to get home before she has an accident, but not today. You see we were visiting Dundrum Town Centre, which recently became the first shopping centre in the south of Ireland to install a full Changing Places toilet. This is an extra large disabled toilet with the addition of a ceiling hoist and changing bed which means I can help my daughter to use the toilet without risking injury to either of us.

It was our first time to use a commercial facility, and I was very impressed: it was spacious, very clean and there were clear instructions on how to use all the equipment.

Getting in was not so easy – you have to obtain and return a special key via the information desk, and it’s NOT the disabled toilet key that I already have. You can buy the one for the Dundrum toilet from the same locksmith, details in this link:

https://www.dundrum.ie/visitor-info/shopmobility

I also had to ask where it was (I should have checked the above link!) and I found it a little cold as there was no radiator.

Apart from those minor issues it was a wonderful experience. I’m not exaggerating. Even at home I’m pulling and adjusting and bending and sweating every time B uses the toilet.

We were in and out of the Dundrum facility in about 10 minutes, and I didn’t feel the need for a lie down afterwards!

It’s also made me even more determined to find a home for B and I where I can install a ceiling hoist, because if I find it hard to manage her physical needs now, how difficult will it become in 10 or 20 years time?

And if anyone doubts the need for these facilities,  I can tell you that when we emerged there was another family waiting outside to use it…

So thank you Dundrum, and I hope that every other shopping centre follows your example soon.

 

Reasons to be Really Cheerful 8.3.19

Everyone in this family is doing better at the moment, and I have managed to be really cheerful at times over the past fortnight.

I’ve enjoyed more sleep, more control over my time, so I managed to organise a passport for B, get to the dentist and optician, choose some badly needed glasses for night driving, and begin some major and important projects.

There was a trip out, coffee and lunch, all with different friends, one of which involved proper make up, straightened hair, and my good coat!

Saturday nights will henceforth be film nights with youngest, and so far we’ve watched The Princess Bride and The Godfather.

Most entertaining moment was eldest getting a cheque in the post and asking me what she was supposed to do with it.

I’m making the effort to whip out the mobile phone when I spot something I like and getting a few one shot wonders like these:

I wrote something about changing the world and apparently it has already changed someone’s behaviour – as they say, we may not think we have the power to make a difference, but actually we do, and that’s a very cheerful thought indeed.

Have a great week xx

R2BC at Mummy from the Heart

Would you take this bike to help save the world?

I’m serious. Between extreme climate events and a couple of recent books that claim the world and humanity is already doomed, I’m worried. But clearly Governments and Corporations and most of the media are not.

People like you and I are supposed to be consumers. If we stop buying stuff, the economy slows down, jobs are lost, tax take reduced and everyone suffers. At least that’s the narrative we are constantly fed. But according to climate scientists, that all has to change, as well as how we live our lives, use energy etc .

And I see friends making small changes, but many more people are struggling with time poverty and simply cannot manage any more than they are doing already.

Back to the bike.

I’ve spent many hours over the past few years trying to find a new home for it and cleaning it up each time, especially as it was passed on to my son by a friend.

I’ve tried to give it away twice, and I’ve tried to sell it too. On two occasions people who said they wanted it never followed through. The most recent attempt was for charity, but between the delivery arrangements and the discovery of punctures, and with so much already going on in my life, my stress levels rocketed. I’m afraid my frustration spilled over into my emails, and understandably the charity involved sourced the bike they needed elsewhere. So I still have the bike. Apparently getting the punctures fixed will cost between €10 and €12. But is it worth it? Does anyone want a junior bike that must be 10 years old at least?

Would you like it?

It’s one of several items I’ve tried to rehome in recent years. They are all still here.

I do what I can to help ‘save the world’: Clothes go to charity shops, I spend a stupid amount of time washing and splitting waste between our three bins and taking boxes, bottles, batteries etc to the local Bring Centre. The only weedkiller I use is boiling water.  I don’t replace things without trying to repair them first. My kitchen units are nearly 20 years old, the curtains are older, and that’s fine with me.

There are many people in my position. But little will change until there is more help and support for those who already feel overwhelmed by daily life. Of course the big fear is that change will be forced upon us all through catastrophic events, leading to many deaths and presumably survival of the fittest.

That prospect is so big and so frightening and makes most of us feel so helpless that it’s easier to think about booking the summer sun holiday than wondering how much our air miles are contributing to the destruction of the world. Or any of the other things we do or don’t do on a daily basis. Like why I don’t ride my bike…

Until there are fundamental changes in society and the economy, which will have to be led from the top, and probably pushed from the bottom, I don’t see things getting any better. What do you think?

And as for this bike? Rehoming it should be just one small step towards saving the world. But sometimes even small steps are harder than they look.

bike, bicycle, junior bike,