How many times have you fallen out of your chair? In my 14 years of paralyzedville, I believe it’s been about 12 times or so, I can vivdly remember each time. I remember because it’s embarrassing. I remember because it hurts! And I remember because it’s a brutal reminder of how much I *really* depend on my chair. And I REALLY don’t like the latter part. It also doesn’t help that I can’t get back in it without help.
As I wheel around each day, working, visiting friends, going out, doing my day-to-day mundane activities, I forget how much I really rely on my chair. I forget I’m even using one sometimes, at the height of my business (I really love when this part happens). But then of course that’s usually when I roll by a mirrored-wall and see my reflection, getting reminded just how disabled I really look to the public. It’s crazy and very much an out of body experience.
One of the first times I fell out of my chair was in the middle of winter. I had an old conversion van with a lift, which my brother was operating. He was impatient, thought I had already rolled off the lift, and started bringing it back up, in the process flipping my chair over, with me getting a nice face full of snow. Oh the memories. My front caster wheels had been off the lift, but not my back wheels, hence why I flipped. I sometimes still wonder if my brother feels any regret from the day.
Another time I fell out was during my college days. I was walking with Mike, my blind friend, down the street one day in the middle of summer. I had taken some painkillers earlier on in the day due to a recent surgery I had and, “Whammy!” I got all dizzy suddenly, lost my already horrid balance, and fell out. And why o why does it always seems like I’m in slow-motion everytime this happens? Just another weird thing about chair life I guess.
I’ve been lucky. Out of all the times I’ve fallen out, at least someone was nearby to help. Can you imagine how scary it’d be to fall out and be all alone? I don’t even want to imagine.