That Day I Saw Their Struggle

It’s early in the day and the smell of a freshly cut lawn is still evident. Moisture next to the pots on the porch of the plants Mom just watered. Announcing myself on entrance as I open the door. No response. Strolling in the kitchen I see a foil-wrapped plate of food Dad had prepared, knowing I was stopping by.

I continue back to the living room still looking for my parents only to find them sound asleep. Thankful, they are just resting comfortably. Dad on his recliner and Mom half covered with a blanket in her favorite chair.

I’m relieved that they are okay but the emotions rush in as I know they are just exhausted and it’s not even quite noon yet.

Flashing back, I remember the day I first saw Mom really struggle just to get out of her easy chair. I remember the time I saw her challenged just to grab clothes out of the washer. A vision, emerges in my mind, of my dad wincing from the pain he felt in his knees as he climbed down from his riding mower.

It is the typical struggle many people go through when age finally catches up with them.

My mind quickly turns to the question: How can I help them with their day to day? How can I help them with the challenge of living with their disabilities?

Impaired Physical Mobility

That’s the phrase I learned, “Impaired Physical Mobility”, that doctors, nurses and physical therapists use when discussing options for day to day care of people with some condition that limits their mobility or hampers their flexibility.

As degrees of impairment increase, so does the complexity in recommendations and treatment plans to help those with more severe and challenging situations. Some have to be continuously monitored to ensure safety and prevent further injury. Others may just need basic physical therapy coupled with aids and devices for living with their specific mobility impairment.

This limitation in movement or lack of flexibility obviously affects more than just the elderly. People with certain disabilities or injuries may also succumb to this impairment. Even children and seemingly healthy adults in some cases, have to overcome challenges to their physical movements. Next time you see a seemingly fit person driving the motorized WalMart cart, don’t be so quick to judge him as lazy. He may be as uncomfortable as it is already.

The Good

The good news is that while some conditions can be corrected and others can only be improved, the Physical Therapy field is growing and improving tremendously. Physical Therapist jobs are one of the top most needed jobs out there.

Do a quick google search and you will find so many postings for vacancies and new positions. Want a connection, a reason, think baby boomers, think today’s more active lifestyle but also consider our diabetes and obesity rates. It’s pretty evident to see there is a strong need for therapists.

Just as important are the improving technologies to aid those struggling with their mobility limitations. Advancements in medications and therapies are continuously being developed and we cannot forget what engineers are designing and inventing every day to assist in this category. We’ve all seen the videos of 3D printers building prosthetic limbs.

I think we are a long way from a true Cyborg but if you know your TV Classics we are really much closer to the 6 Million Dollar Man. Oh how far we’ve come!

The Bad

I cannot clip my toenails, I cannot scrub my back, I cannot wipe…well, you know where. Is there something that can help me with that? I cannot hold my toothbrush, I cannot get up out of my chair? Is there a device that can help me with that? You would think it would be easy for anyone to find daily aids for disabled people but unfortunately not so much.

Sure some local drugstores have some things but you definitely won’t find a wide assortment. Ever seen a motorized wheelchair for sale in a Walmart. You typically need to go to a specialty medical equipment store to find it. Still sounds simple enough right. Right?

The Rub

Computer generated image with clipping path – Puzzled.

Here is the rub. You know what you need help with. Now what? First does a device even exist. Second what the heck don’t you call it. What don’t you call a nail clipper for those who cannot reach their toes? What do you call the device that helps you get out of your chair?

I’ve asked people I know who are suffering through there limitations. Is there a device that you find helpful in your day to day. Sometimes it’s a yes because it’s a common product found in most drug stores, A cane or a walker. The more common answer is, No, I haven’t found anything, I don’t know of anything or I don’t even know if anything exists.

Sadly there is also the dark side to this. There are just some things people don’t find comfortable asking about. Certain types of aids. I mentioned one of those a few paragraphs up.

They are out there – Life Aids for Disabled People

Pretty much the same conclusion I arrived at when trying to find products for my folks. I couldn’t just walk into my local Walmart to find what I needed. I was just not clear what to even ask for. Oh yeah…and what does that device even look like.

Clueless, I did what most normal people would do and just started typing every sort of search string I can come up with. Pretty amazing how smart Google Search can be. It didn’t take too long before I started stumbling on various outlets that specialize in just this sort of thing.

Winner-Winner-Chicken-Dinner! I didn’t even have to worry about being embarrassed about what I was looking for.

This is the ultimate goal of Life Is In Reach! To connect people with the products they need. We know if we can help even just a few people, we’ve accomplished something special. So here’s to living life just a little more mobile and with just a bit more freedom.

Cheers!

Frank

 

About Frank

Hi Everyone and welcome to LifeIsInReach.com

Life brings to all of us so many ups and downs. While it’s exciting at times, stressful at others and maybe even painful, having to live our lives with some restriction or limitation in our physical movements only adds to our everyday stresses. Just the simple act of brushing your own teeth might be a miraculous accomplishment for the day.

In a world where people are already enacting plans to set up colonies on Goldilocks planets, right now, hear on earth so many of our population struggle just to get out the front door of their house. The simple movements in life can be a struggle for so many.

MY STORY

My name is Frank. I was born into a loving family with traditional family values but into a culture that loved to eat. Not that eating was priority number one but because it was how we socialized and shared our lives with others. It was our way to welcome people to our homes.

Your typical American birthday party might consist of cake and hotdogs and games. Well, in our culture it was not a rare sight to see a birthday party mirror what looks like a village fiesta. So yes I became a master of the art to taste testing.

I was a pretty active young man for the majority of my youth and into my late 30s. Karate and Baseball as a kid. Football became my passion as a teen and I stayed pretty active in basketball and softball as a young adult.

I would be the first tell you, though I was active, I’ve struggled with my weight all my life. I still do today. While I’m still trying to get my weight down and get my health right, I have to figure out ways to do certain things today that were so much easier before.

Clipping toenails is not an easy task these days. Bending down to pick up my keys I dropped on the floor is not something I look forward too…especially in public.

WHY I WANT TO HELP PEOPLE

While it is embarrassing for me to share that, I know that so many people share the same simple challenges. Sadly many have more serious difficulties than I do. Some are due to weight issues like me, others have been in accidents, and there are those who have unfortunately been medically diagnosed with conditions that make daily-living almost impossible.

It is one thing to simply be overweight. So, I’m thankful that there are better choices I can make to change my situation for the better. But others don’t have that chance and some of those people just happen to be close family members or friends.

You see I have a very special person in my life that suffers from a condition called “Ankylosing Spondylitis”. I probably never would have heard of that condition if it wasn’t for this person I know. If you have ever seen a person that is always hunched over walking then you’re looking at a similar, if not, the same condition. You can easily find details about it with a simple google search. Suffice it to say it really makes life a challenge. Just turning his head to see what’s on your left can be excruciatingly painful.

I’m always on the lookout to find things that can make my life a little easier. So when I see things that can help others as well, I just want to share it.  Especially to that person I know.

 

This is just one way I can see to help those who have done so much for me. I’m figuring there are a lot of people who would like to find things that can help make their lives just a little bit easier but are a bit prideful or perhaps scared to reach out and ask.

THE GOAL OF MY SITE

Today, technologies have and continue to be invented that change the direction of history. As exciting as that is, what gets us at Life Is In Reach pumped up, are those technologies that make daily living much less of a chore and headache.

We see examples of people overcoming limitations every day and it is our goal to help those with physical limitations to mobility get pass those challenges. When Life is in Reach, Happiness is in Reach!

If you ever need a hand or have any questions, feel free to leave them below and I will be more than happy to help you out.

All the best,

Frank

LifeIsInReach.com