Happy New Year! As I sit back and reflect on the craziness of 2020, one of the things I am most thankful for is my Stretto Power Chair, which I received this past April. In previous blogs, I have discussed how it has made life much easier for me. I’ve also realized how much easier it has made things for the people around me, such as my fiancée, my family and friends. This blog is going to be a little bit different in style than my previous blogs. I thought it would be good to show some of the ways the Stretto has made life easier for everyone.
My Stretto Power Chair has given me the ability to be more productive in the kitchen without the assistance of others. When I was in my manual wheelchair, I would often need to wait for my fiancée to come home from work to help make dinner with me or I would have a family member or personal support worker (PSW) come over to help me to prepare things. With my Stretto Power Wheelchair, I can easily access everything in our kitchen safely (cupboards, stove, oven, fridge, etc.) which has allowed me to fully prepare dinners that are ready for us both to eat when she comes home from a day at work.
My Stretto Power Wheelchair has allowed me to contribute more to the day-to-day chores that come with owning a house. With iLevel® technology on my Stretto, I can reach higher areas that I want to clean or dust, a task which was normally reserved for my fiancée. I can also move around my house, collecting garbage to throw away or to clean up areas I was previously unable to access. Before life with my Stretto, I often felt like I wasn’t contributing as much as I would like to with tasks such as these. Now, it is definitely one of those things that have made our household run much smoother and has taken some of the load off my fiancée in terms of housework. It is much easier when you can split up chores. It allows us to spend more time together, for which I am grateful.
My Stretto has also kept me safer (in my opinion) during the COVID-19 pandemic. Previously, if my fiancée wasn’t home, I needed to have various people, from PSWs to family and friends, come over to help me complete activities throughout the day. These activities ranged from people helping me access items I needed that were out of reach, to helping me stretch my legs (thank you to the Stretto’s extending foot/leg rests!) or get to the bathroom. Because I can now do a lot of those things independently, there has been fewer people coming to our house during the pandemic, which keeps us safe and limits our contact with those outside of our “bubble.”
My Stretto Power Wheelchair has also given me the freedom and independence to leave my house basically whenever I choose, allowing me to go to stores that are close by for anything we need. Now I can get groceries and other items that previously I would have needed someone to get for me. Again, this has allowed my fiancée and I to spend more time together, as she is not the only one now who can run errands and pick things up.
All in all, my Stretto has made a huge difference in my life in 2020 and has taken some of the load off those closest to me. I am looking forward to 2021 and can’t wait to see where my Stretto takes me next and all the new things I will discover with it.