The Benefits Of Using A Walker For Shopping

Title reads, The bnefits of using a walker for shopping, by Chronically Hopeful. On the right are 2 photos, one of Char wearing an apron and rubber gloves, she's washing dishes, the other she's outside with a walker carrying shopping bags.

​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.

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​Today has been such a good day! After spending most of yesterday in bed, today I managed dishes in the morning, ​had a lovely visitor who brought lunch and then we ​went grocery shopping in the afternoon! My first outing in 2 weeks. 

I went with the walking frame which was a great help, specially in the supermarket, as I could use it as a trolley to hold my things and also lean or sit on it to rest.

My walker has a seat ​with a mesh basket below and hooks to attach and carry shopping bags. Instead of carrying a shopping basket, I could place it on the walker, pushing it like a trolley and eliminate that exertion altogether.

It makes things like shopping, which is a huge thing for somebody with ME or CFS, much easier and allows me to enjoy this rare treat rather than dread it or collapse from over-exertion.

Going to the supermarket might sound like a simple activity, but it is far from it. Not only is there all the walking, but it also involves navigating transport, bright lights that also hum and buzz, reaching and bending to pick items from shelves, reading labels, ​comparing prices and of course there are crowds of people moving and talking around you.

Then when it's done you have to quickly unpack your basket, count money, make decisions and repack everything at the checkout! It's terrifying when your body is already crashing and the cognitive dysfunction has already set in.

So although I have some mixed feelings about using a walker when I look perfectly healthy, I know that without it I would not even be able to go on these rare outings to the supermarket.

Needless to say my legs are done. Lots of pain tonight and I've been fighting the sleep for hours, waiting for bed time, but it's finally midnight so I can go to ​sleep now! Good night world.

​* Part of this post was originally published on Instagram on ​27 August 2016

email chronically hopeful char at gmail dot com
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