Today is one week of living life in my new chair with my elevating seat. Standing directly from my chair has made walking a much easier task to accomplish and the result has been setting new records while walking in PT. Last week, in one session, I walked a total of 96 feet with 30 feet being the longest stretch at one time. That’s quite an accomplishment after sitting in a chair for 10 years.
Concurrently, I’ve been participating in mindfulness training, and this couldn’t have come at a better time. When the chair was delivered last week, I watched with fear and anxiety as the technician took my old chair and security away, knowing that my life was going to get a lot tougher.
Everything is more difficult in my new chair, and it has really slowed me down and forced me to be mindful of how I move and how quickly I do it. The consequence for not doing that would be falling on the floor. I’ve been there and done that and even have a T-shirt that says on the back of it, “if you can read this put my butt back in my chair ” because the first year someone was always picking me up off the floor. It still makes me smile today.
I never thought I’d be at this point again in my life. At times I feel like I did 10 years ago after my injury and am reliving a few of the same feelings and thoughts of how difficult everything is once again. My mindfulness training couldn’t have come at a better time. I have been reminded these past few days that thoughts are just thoughts and that my feelings lie to me. This training has taught me to pay attention to my own thought patterns so I am not living in them and playing them out over and over again. I am aware of them but not identified by them.
The universe always gives me what I need when I need it. Dr. Shauna Shapiro, PhD talked about Mindfulness with the Attention and Intention to be curious, kind, and compassionate, even if my circumstance is not how I want it to be and even if I am not how I want myself to be, I can hold all of it with kindness and respond accordingly. I am right back to what I think about grows. I am either building good neural pathways or negative ones with every thought think.
I am working on accepting this experience and my reactions even though I don’t like what I’m feeling and going through right now. This is not what I expected after ten years of being completely independent. Regardless, I have identified my WC issues and trust in time they will be resolved and will trust that this too shall pass. I trust that when my thinking is right, all will fall into its proper place.
My focus now is to be more curious, kind, and compassionate towards myself and my new wheelchair experience, while embracing and accepting each new struggle exactly as it is, just a few temporary challenges to resolve and overcome.