I used a wheelchair...

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Lexied, Jul 30, 2003.

  1. Lexied

    Lexied New Member

    Since I have been in constant severe pain from FM (2 yrs.) it has become very difficult and painful to do the things that normal people do. All the thing I took for granted are next to impossible for me to do now. Going to the grocery store, or drug store, or any kind of shopping is like running a marathon but I push myself to do them anyway. My husband has been pushing me for so long to use a wheelchair to help me stay longer and possibly be able to enjoy being out instead of holding on to everything in sight to keep me from collapsing in the floor. Not only has FM caused me to suffer, it has also made my husband and family suffer too because I can't go places with them as much as I used to. After 2 years of "nudging" me to swallow my pride I finally gave it a try. My husband and I went to Lowe's and he wheeled me around so he could actually take his time and not worry about me having to leave 5 mintues after we got there. At first I felt horrible ... I felt guilty for being in that chair. I see so many people that really have to use them and I didn't think I was in that category. I also don't want to feel like I'm "giving up." I need to move as much as I can no matter how much it hurts. Even though it was nice to go with my husband and see how happy it made him, I still feel so bad about using a wheelchair. Have any of you had a similar experience? I would really like to know how other FM sufferers feel about this.
    [This Message was Edited on 07/30/2003]
  2. jkd7058

    jkd7058 New Member

    It really crossed my mind one day at Target. I had been to other places briefly before that and I was about as close to empty on energy as I could be. I got my cart and started to go around a pick up the items I needed. Very shortly, I was leaning on the shopping cart just to make it to the next item. Then I remembered something that was at the back of the store. I wanted to cry. I had to give up on the item just so I'd have the ability to drive home. That's when I thought I wish I wasn't so proud to use the power carts they have.

    I've even thought about asking my doctor for a handicap parking sticker. Sometimes I don't have the ability to walk the distance to the store, much less all the walking it takes to get around some of these large stores.

  3. Mar19

    Mar19 New Member

    I have a wheelchair,walker, cane...mostly I use the cane and keep my trips short. I feel the same way about being in the wheelchair, but if I want to stay out someplace for any length of time I do need the chair.

    I was doing pretty good for awhile and was even able to do short errands without the cane, but I'm spiralling down again. Unless I use my wheelchair, any trip more than 5 minutes or so really knocks me out. I might get thru it, but then I pay big time for the next week or so. Your right, it's a pride thing. Especially when you meet someone you haven't seen in awhile and you're in the chair. Most of the time they feel odd or something talking to me, and I feel...I don't know exactly what word to choose. Embarrassed? Angry? When I was in the chair regularly on outings, I did get a bit more used to it. Looks like I'll be getting more practice again because my pain level is way up and my energy and stamina waaaaaayyy down.

    My advice to you? Use the chair; I know how you feel, but it does make things a whole lot easier. The nice part is that strangers tend to be very helpful to you. One of my favorites was when this 10 yr old or so boy ran to open the door for me. Thing is, I was wheeling toward the ladies' room. When I got to the door, I planned to get out of the chair, and open the door myself. But he dashed toward the opportunity to help. The door opened inward, and it wasn't until he was actually IN the ladies' room did it dawn on him where he was. I detected a small gasp, but he was a trooper and stayed there holding the door until I got all the way in. Ya just gotta love moments like that! What a sweet kid!

    Love and blessings
  4. iconracr

    iconracr New Member

    The disabilied crowd is not very nice. So many times I putted into a handicap parking space with my grandmother who lost her leg.

    People would actually get out and yell at me because I didn't need to park there. Or they would set and stare at me and see WHY I needed to park there. Even when I got my grandmother into her wheelchair the thought was, I should park elsewhere since I personally didn't need it.

    That being said, you have to do what is best for YOU. Forget about others. There is always guilt even from those who use a wheelchair on a regular basis.

    You need to get better and heal and if using a wheelchair helps get you out, so be it.
    Feel better, Cheryl
  5. ~Cel~

    ~Cel~ New Member


    I too have been having problems with my legs. Shopping is okay as long as I don't take too long, but last week we went to Niagara Falls for 5 days on vacation. I don't know if you've ever been there, but all you do is WALK! My dad brought along my grandmother's wheelchair and although at first I didn't want to use it, I figured it was best to use it and be able to stay and visit the place with my family instead of having to go back to the cabin and spoil everyone's fun. It was a little embarassing at first, but I got used to it and was even thankful for it as I was able to enjoy the evenings instead of having to crash at 7:00 pm.

    My little nephew was with us and he had such a great time being wheeled around in my lap, and the chair came in handy for the backpacks! So it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be.

    Please don't be embarassed and think of it this way : if using a chair means you can last longer and spend more time with your family or husband, go for it. Beats having to stay home!


  6. fibrolindak

    fibrolindak New Member

    Dear Lexied,
    You certainly have no reason to feel any guilt whatsoever!
    You've suffered long enough! And what a blessing to have such an understanding husband! My husband is the one who feels embarassment when I want to use an electric cart to get my shopping done. He really fights against it. In my case, my body went downhill so quickly that I think he didn't have enough time to adjust to the extreme difference.
    I've been trying to convince him that it's a much better thing (using the chair) for the both of us. I'm able to take my time shopping, and actually enjoy the experience. Now I wish I could convince him of how much better it would be for us/him if I used a chair for other activities. We used to really enjoy taking nightly walks around the neighborhood or to the downtown area. That's all gone now, and I'm mostly housebound and bored and lonely. So, enjoy using a chair and please don't feel any guilt or embarassment. Just get out and do whatever you want to do!
  7. elaine_p

    elaine_p New Member

    I haven't used one yet, but my counselor was strongly suggesting it. She figures it's being proactive. If I save my energy there (shopping), I can use that energy for something else.
  8. teach6

    teach6 New Member

    I do not feel the least bit guilty. If others could experience how I feel after standing for only about five minutes they would completely understand.

    Before I began using the electric carts in stores the people at my grocery store thought they might have to carry me to my car. I had to lie down and rest on their bench before leaving the store. That was when I had no idea why I felt like I did.

    I love my scooter and always get positive comments about it when I use it. Many call it my red Cadillac because it is so much nicer than the carts in the stores. My basket is smaller though, so I try to use their carts when they are available.

    I have been using a disabled parking pass for about 21 months now and don't feel the least bit guilty. If I had to walk from the far end of the parking lot before getting into the store I might not even have the energy to use an electric cart.

    I say if you need it, use it. That's why they are there. I'm single, so a wheelchair was not an option. My neck and shoulders are in enough pain without having to try and manipulate a wheelchair.