Disclaimer: This is an article written for GM Coachwork, all words & experiences are the writers own.
60.9 miles (1 hour 12 minutes) that’s the distance between mother and daughter. It’s not oceans away or flights apart. But it is far enough away that my little go-kart (powered wheelchair) wouldn’t make it on it’s own.
It’s been 13 years since I’ve seen my mum face-to-face but it’s also been 20 years since I visited my childhood home. Don’t misunderstand me I have spoken to my mum every day via phone, Facebook or video call, i’m not that mean to deprive my mum of not speaking to my wonderful self but I would be lying if I said I didn’t have some form of guilt that it’s been so many years.
Being a wheelchair user access to travel can be extremely stressful, your anxiety can reach a whole new level. Planning is key to traveling anywhere but disabled or not all the planning in the world it can still go very wrong. The difference comes down to being stranded in a wheelchair and no help or walking off and being able to find different means of transport.
You might be thinking. ‘Well that’s all very dramatic’. And that’s okay because most people do take their Independence for granted – not everyone will stop and think about how in their every day life they are free to make decisions and act on them.
‘Freedom is more than Just a state of mind, it’s my wheelchair’
You could be asking yourself, why hasn’t her mum visited her!? I’m not the only one in my family to have a rare form of Muscular Dystrophy a progressive muscle wasting condition, my mum and brother have also been diagnosed with this disease.
For years I haven’t traveled outside of my local area not just down to public transport access being extremely difficult with the lack of accessibility but also my fear of what happens if I need the toilet, I am one in 1/4 million other disabled people that cannot use a standard ’accessible toilet’ with my complex needs I need a Changing Places Toilet.
This month after 13 years of depriving my mum of not seeing my beautiful face, that was all about to change, I was physically going to see my mum. And I am sure my brother was secretly very excited to see me to! I was ready nothing was going to stop me.
Remember when I said all the planning in the world things can still go wrong – yep, you guessed it. After two failed attempts due to illness in my house, and yes of cause like the grown adult I am I totally sulk like a child. It was definitely third time lucky.
Why was this made possible after so long!?
I have my very own WAV (wheelchair accessible vehicle) I am in the comfort of my own vehicle, if I need to stop because I need the toilet I can, I can use my own wheelchair to get in an out using the ramp at the the rear. I have enough space to take everything I need to travel with. My Ford Custom Quantum has been adapted to my needs by GM Coachwork. I now have the freedom to go and see my mum when ever and as many times a I want.
Until next time. Tell me what you think?
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