This week has been so superb! I promise that I’ll get again to deal with initiatives subsequent week, and I’m nonetheless going to work as onerous as I can to fulfill my objective of ending the toilet by the top of June. However this final week, dwelling initiatives have been the very last thing on my thoughts.
As you most likely know, Matt and I purchased a wheelchair van final week. If you missed that story, you can read about it here. We knew the van was going to be delivered final Saturday, however we didn’t know what time. So Matt bought up early, and I bought him able to exit into the world for the primary time in years.
Sadly, by the point the van was delivered and the entire paperwork was signed, it was fairly late within the afternoon, and Matt was too exhausted to go wherever. I did get him into his wheelchair and loaded up within the van in order that I may apply attaching the entire straps and the seatbelt, after which we went for only a very brief drive round our neighborhood. We drove for lower than 5 minutes, after which he was able to go dwelling and lie down in mattress.
He had requested me about the potential for me staying dwelling from church on Sunday morning in order that we may go for a drive and out to eat, however in a while Saturday night, he determined that I ought to go forward and go to church on Sunday, and we’d plan one thing for the following day because it was a vacation.
So Monday morning got here, and I wasn’t positive if he was going to hen out (I imply, simply take into consideration what this should really feel like after being housebound for 13 years), however he bought up early and was decided to go away the home. He was excited and nervous and emotional. We each agreed that it doesn’t matter what occurred, we wouldn’t panic or get annoyed. If one thing occurred the place he felt panicked or overwhelmed, I’d merely load him up within the van and drive straight dwelling. I wished him to really feel comfy and relaxed and know that I wasn’t going to maintain him out towards his will. He was in command of the place we went and the way lengthy we stayed out.
I’m so glad that we’ve the superb wheelchair ramp from the again studio door that results in the carport, as a result of it’s really easy for him to get out and into the van. And I ABSOLUTEL LOVE that we bought a rear entry van! I can park wherever and nonetheless get Matt out and in of the van simply. I’m not confined to parking within the particular wheelchair accessible parking that has the ramp house on the facet for van entry.
And right here was Matt on Monday morning, about to get into the van for his first actual outing in about 13 years. He was emotional, however excited, and giving me a fist pump within the air. (Sorry that these subsequent three footage are blurry. They’re truly screenshots from movies that I took. I’ll share the movies later on my Instagram stories.)
And since I didn’t need ANYTHING doubtlessly ruining this outing for us, I didn’t change his shirt earlier than we left, so he had a shirt on with remnants from the earlier night’s dinner that he ate (and spilled on himself) whereas reclining in mattress.
I additionally didn’t try and take away his Hoyer raise sling from beneath him (that’s the inexperienced factor you see). These forms of issues (like altering shirts) appear straightforward and easy to most of us. However they completely deplete Matt’s power. And I may simply see me altering his shirt and eradicating the Hoyer raise sling, after which him convincing himself that he was too exhausted to really go away the home. I used to be decided that that was NOT going to occur. So we headed out as is — soiled shirt and Hoyer raise sling. And truthfully, I couldn’t have cared much less. There have been rather more vital issues at work right here than to fret a few soiled shirt and a Hoyer raise sling. As he will get extra used to going out, and as we study collectively tips on how to navigate this new chapter, we’ll each get higher at it.
Anyway, as soon as I bought him all secured within the van, he appeared fairly relaxed! I needed to put a t-shirt underneath the shoulder strap in order that it wouldn’t rub towards his neck, however we’ve since discovered a a lot simpler option to do the shoulder strap in order that it doesn’t even contact his neck.
We went to Rosa’s Cafe for breakfast, and as soon as we ordered and headed for a desk, he bought fairly emotional. I imply, y’all! This was his first time consuming inside a restaurant in 13 years! And seeing him get emotional made me emotional as nicely. I’m positive folks have been questioning what the heck was occurring with the couple crying in Rosa’s. 😀
We had such a good time having breakfast collectively, and I used to be so glad that we went for breakfast as an alternative of lunch as a result of they’re not busy in any respect within the morning. I believe it could have been much more overwhelming had we gone for lunch and needed to work across the lunch crowd.
After our leisurely breakfast, we headed to Lover’s Leap at Cameron Park. Should you ever go to Waco and do a tour with Waco Excursions, this is among the locations they’ll convey you. We noticed two vans full of vacationers whereas we have been there.
It was an important day with stunning climate, and we each loved spending among the day outside at such a lovely spot within the metropolis. After that, we headed to Sonic to get some chilly treats. After we bought dwelling, I bought Matt out of the van and bought him located inside, after which handed him his Sonic orange slush. He took a sip, and with an enormous grin on his face, he stated, “This tastes like victory!” 😀 (I do know I’ve already shared that half, nevertheless it bears repeating. Our outing was a HUGE victory!)
I couldn’t imagine how easily every part went. I had ready my thoughts for some bumps within the street — bother getting Matt safe within the van, or a spilled drink on the restaurant, or one thing like that. However none of that occurred. The entire expertise went off with out a hitch, and he felt so comfy and gained an enormous quantity of confidence being out and about. In all, we spent about 4 hours out of the home on Monday.
On Tuesday, I figured he’d wish to keep dwelling and relaxation from the entire pleasure on Monday, however I used to be improper! Whereas he didn’t really feel as much as going someplace the place he needed to get out of the van, he was very excited concerning the thought of taking a drive across the metropolis. So I bought him up and into his wheelchair, after which loaded him up at the back of the van, and we took off.
We drove by and noticed the primary home that we rented once we moved to Waco in 2005. We stopped by my mother’s home. We drove throughout, and he cherished being out and seeing town. After a few hours of sight-seeing, we went to a drive-though and bought a late lunch, then headed dwelling to eat.
As soon as I bought him settled at dwelling after our outing on Tuesday, he was exhausted and stated, “Simply give me two days to calm down, after which we’ll do one thing on Friday.” I used to be very happy to do this as a result of I’m not desirous to push him too onerous. I do wish to gently nudge him sufficient in order that he doesn’t give into fears, and in order that he will get previous the mindset that the van is only for particular events or emergencies. I wish to nudge him simply sufficient in order that he understands that the van is for regular, on a regular basis life, and if he desires to get out and go the grocery retailer, we will try this. However I don’t wish to push him so onerous that he’s always overly exhausted and may’t have any downtime to relaxation.
So Wednesday, I had lunch with my mother after which went to my church small group that night time, identical to regular. Matt was glad to have that point to relaxation up, and as per his request, I used to be anticipating him to relaxation up yesterday as nicely.
So think about my shock once we awoke, and he was able to get out and about once more! After his being homebound for 13 years, there was completely no method I used to be going to say no. If he felt like he was as much as it, I wasn’t going to argue with him or attempt to speak him out of it. So we loaded up into the van, and headed to Rudy’s for some barbeque. I took a number of footage of him there, however this one is my favourite. There are such a lot of feelings being expressed in his face abruptly — happiness, pleasure, reduction, all together with a couple of tears.
After lunch, I took him to my church in order that he may go searching, meet my pastor, and get a really feel for the scale of the church, and so on. After which we did extra driving round by the river in numerous parks. In all, we spent about three hours out and about.
To say that this has been life-changing doesn’t appear ample. I imply, folks use that phrase to explain all forms of issues, and people issues usually aren’t truly life-changing.
However that is. I don’t know precisely what prompted this transformation in Matt — his sudden want to get out of the home and have a life exterior of the home once more — however I’m simply so grateful! I attempt to put myself in his sneakers, and I simply can’t even think about. I do not know what it should have felt like being dwelling certain for 13 years. After which I do not know what it should really feel wish to instantly be again out on the earth, experiencing all of this stuff for the primary time in nicely over a decade. I can also’t think about the quantity of concern and nervousness he have to be having to beat, however he’s leaping in with each toes. I couldn’t be extra pleased with him, or extra excited for him.
And he’s not prepared to point out down but. 😀 He’s already instructed me that we’re going to IHOP simply as quickly as I’m carried out penning this put up. And tomorrow, we’re going to see a film collectively for the primary time in….nicely…a minimum of 13 years. We have been making an attempt to think about the final film we noticed collectively in a theater, and the final one we each keep in mind was Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (which we each agree was terrible). I’m positive we noticed one thing after that, however we haven’t seen a transfer collectively in a theater since round 2008 or 2009. Then on Sunday, he’s going to go to church with me, and presumably out to eat with my household afterwards. This will probably be his first time going to church in about 15 years.
We each agree that we’re going to need to settle into some type of schedule, like perhaps one outing through the week, and two on the weekend, in order that I can truly get some work carried out. However this previous week — our first week with the brand new wheelchair van — I wished him to have the ability to get out and about as a lot as he wished to. This was INFINITELY extra vital than a rest room transform or some other home challenge.
Addicted 2 Adorning is the place I share my DIY and adorning journey as I transform and enhance the 1948 fixer higher that my husband, Matt, and I purchased in 2013. Matt has M.S. and is unable to do bodily work, so I do the vast majority of the work on the home on my own. You can learn more about me here.
I hope you’ll be part of me on my DIY and adorning journey! If you wish to comply with my initiatives and progress, you possibly can subscribe beneath and have every new put up delivered to your e mail inbox. That method you’ll by no means miss a factor!