Next time you leave your home, think about how easy it was for you to do that. You just got up, grabbed your keys or your bus pass and left. Nothing to it right? Things you take for granted...
Now imagine how it might be if you weren't able to even go beyond your driveway because you have a 300-plus wheelchair and nothing to transport it for over two years...
Yes, I have a scooter. One that requires someone else to handle, dismantle, put together. It requires transferring into and out of, it's old and wearing down, highly uncomfortable and causes a lot of pain on the hip I broke, that with the FSHD, had put me in the wheelchair in the first place.
My van I used to have (without the ramp or lift) was sold because it was useless to me without a ramp or lift and I can't afford the $40,000 and up to buy a new one, or the modification costs starting at $10,000. And right now we have nothing running to transport my wheelchair.
If you're thinking there's the bus, well my friend, I've tried that option. On top of being expensive to always pay $3 or about for one way, for someone on disability ($700 -- which, by the way, is our only source of income right now) it's an expense I can't afford unless I want to skip on the electric bill. Besides, my wheelchair and scooter are too big to fit on the public transportation.
Not having a wheelchair-accommodating vehicle is a sentence of dependency on you, on others to run my errands and do my shopping , on disability income, and a life sentence of just being stuck at home.
There are people who have lived like I have for the past two years, they are prisoners and nursing home patients.
I'm a 34-year-old mother in a wheelchair with no way to transport it. Instead of being able to get the help I need, I've been denied the help I need to get back on the road through everything.
Things get complicated when you're in a wheelchair with no way to go. How can I be independent and get my own things done this way? I was completely independent before the wheelchair -- even with my FSHD Muscular Dystrophy -- now I am a dependent for anything beyond my front door and it's completely unnecessary.
Why wouldn't you want to do everything you can to help someone with mobility challenges and/or disabilities, a friend, a family member, a person you care for gain the ability to go beyond the driveway?
Why are we intentionally making things so much harder for those who already have more to deal with because of their disabilities, injuries, and/or limitations? It's just like kicking someone when they are already down!
How can anyone say that this is a better situation for me because of my wheelchair? Denying the mobility equipment those with mobility issue need does not support our abilities and it does not promote independence. It does not support any kind of meaningful life for those with disabilities at all.
Instead it kills all hope, dreams, desires and passion for life. There is no life that is independently yours anymore. There is no more dreaming of better things, like getting and education or acquiring a job. There is no strive to become and do larger things in your life, because you can't even go to the store on your own. Instead, now life for you, the one in the wheelchair, revolves around the time that other people around you have in their lives when they have you in their schedule. There is no more life that is you.
Is that really the intention?