I have had many people ask me two questions when planning for this trip. 1. What is a mobility scooter? 2. Why are you using a mobility scooter?
First of all, a mobility scooter is what people use in Super Stores or Supermarkets to get around large spaces. The ones you usually see have 3 to 4 wheels and go about 1 mph.
The answer to question two is a lot more complicated…
When I was born with my kidney issues, I was lucky enough to have a bonus attached. Both of my hips were dislocated and my spine was like a spiral staircase. Due to my bilateral hip dysplasia, scoliosis and lordosis my parents were told I would never walk. I don’t listen to doctors sometimes! After scooting around for a year or so, my parents bought me a Busy Body walking car. After “walking” around in that (and help from next door neighbors), I learned how to walk.
I’ve been walking (waddling) ever since. My hips are so bad that a orthopedist was once so surprised after looking at my x-ray, he wasn’t sure how I walked into the room and climb up on the table. He watched me walk around the room in awe, because he was so dumbfounded. It turned out my hips created two new sockets for my legs to attach and work, so I basically have four hip sockets.
I was fairly mobile for most of my life, albeit slower and needing to rest periodically. It sure didn’t stop me from playing baseball, basketball and riding bikes with my friends. Fast forward 30 years and age has gotten to me. I just can’t walk long walks. I have had a accessible parking sticker since I’ve been driving, but now I need more. About a year ago I started walking with a cane, but didn’t want to do any more. My pride got the best of me.
I finally gave in a little less than a year ago when going to a baseball game with friends. I just brought a scooter a friend gave me as a gift. I couldn’t believe how much I was missing. I was walking from my car to a store and back to a car. I hadn’t gone so far in years. I was free! I was still a little insecure and I did notice people looking or talking under their breath. Guess what? I’ve been getting this looks all my life. I’m in my 40s, what do I care what people think. I’ve kind of lived like that my entire life, what took me so long to do this now?
After being comfortable in the scooter, my mind started moving. What should I do now? Where will I go? I can go (mostly) anywhere! Around the same time I was listening to a Podcast about a guy who walked across England. Then I thought of Terry Fox… Then I watched Roll With Me… The rest begins on April 1st.