My Advice to Wheelchair Users

Life isn’t what happens to us, it’s ultimately how we react to it. So, if you’re struggling on a day when things just seem to keep happening, laugh. Find something funny in your situation, and roll (pun intended) with it. Find the good in every day, some days just look harder.

Do your research on what you think you might need on your new ride. I found that if I didn’t have something on my current power wheelchair that would be useful, I made sure to add it to my next chair. After all, you’re the one in it and you need to be comfortable, right? Also, make your ride uniquely you.

Believe in your abilities. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard, “are you sure you can do that?” The answer is always yes. Yes, I can.

Ask for help when needed. That’s an important one. Sometimes, I’m not just riding the struggle bus, but driving it. And yes, I have trouble asking for help. Sometimes, it’s worth it in the long run.

Make friends. You never know when you might need that extra boost of confidence, that shoulder to cry on, or just a listening ear. So, get out and meet people. Sitting is tough but it doesn’t have to be boring.

Research seat elevation. I did, and boy, my view changed. Seated height is so 2015.

Find something you thrive at. Mine just happens to be blogging and public speeches. Get out and make people embrace your awesome self. I’m so glad I did.

Invest in a good power wheelchair cushion. My favorite cushion has CoolCore® technology by Stealth Products. There is nothing worse than a sore backside! You’re welcome. For the record, I’m not sore with my CoolCore.

Research service dogs. I’ve had three amazing Labradors who all bring something different to the table. A service dog offers a second set of hands when my body can’t accommodate.

Finally, get a good mentor. They’ll be there when you need them and watch you blossom in your new normal.

About Alison Chancellor: Alison is a friend of Quantum. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri, where she cheers on her beloved St. Louis Blues at hockey games. Click here to learn more about Alison.