A year ago today I got my wheelchair! I was almost completely bedridden at the time. Walking just a few steps every hour or two just to keep circulation and muscles alive was a chore.
As a family we were house-sitting in the Lake District at the time. It was a long term arrangement, so was kind of our home away from home, but I had been confined to an upstairs bedroom and was unable to get out to see the countryside around me.
I would enjoy, for a few minutes, watching the birds at the feeders outside my window and the gorgeous orchids that adorned every windowsill. Although it was a freezing cold winter, I longed to go out and explore.
It's a strange feeling of gratitude, shame and even guilt as a thirty-something year old woman, who looks perfectly healthy, walks around a supermarket with a walking aid most commonly used by the elderly. When elderly people who are clearly struggling are walking around the same supermarket without any mobility aids, the looks you get cause all sorts of emotions to surface.