My New Ride

I own a wheelchair.

I’m not sure how it happened. One minute my husband and I were discussing renting a wheelchair for an upcoming day at Disneyland, and the next thing I know I was checking with my insurance company on coverage and debating between wheelsize and how easily a particular chair folded and its exact weight so I can lift it into a trunk.

My new wheels!

We have found ourselves renting wheelchairs a lot lately. If there are any events where I need to walk more than say, a block or so, I really need one. It’s not that I can’t walk, it’s just that I get tired very quickly and a long walk can potentially ruin the rest of my day.

Just to give you an example, while in San Diego for the annual BlogHer conference we took  a cab to the ballpark to catch a Padres game. I figured I could walk from the cab to our seats and then sit and be fine.


The walk from the cab to our seats was further than expected, and while not too far, it certainly wiped me out. And because I was so exhausted I asked to leave a few innings earlier than I would have liked. No fun.

So it seemed to make sense to rent a wheelchair for the rest of the conference. Walking around a large conference hall just wasn’t going to happen. Not even with my new, awesome cane.

We’ve also rented a wheelchair at Universal Studios, Walt Disney World, and Six Flags Magic Mountain. That’s hundreds of dollars in rentals. So it makes perfect economic sense to buy one, with help from our health insurance.

It just doesn’t make sense to my heart.

I don’t want to be sick enough to own a wheelchair. I don’t want to need one for nearly every ‘event’ that comes up in my life. I don’t want to fold it up and put it in our trunk and have my husband push me around forever. So sure, while it makes all the economic sense in the world, it just plain hurts.

My daughter is now talking about getting her American Girl doll a wheelchair. My son wants to put flames on the side of my new chair when it arrives. My husband is excited to ‘trick it out’ with who knows what, all while I’m just trying to wrap my head around the purchase.

I’m still working very hard to get better. I have another round of treatment next week, and my many medications appear to be helping. So I’m excited that I am making progress, however it doesn’t feel like ‘progress’ when I am buying yet another accessory of the disabled.

It is giving me an idea for a goal though…to makes sure, sometime soon, that our new investment becomes something of a bust. That it ends up collecting dust, or holding my clothes in a corner of a room, because I’m out running circles around everyone using my able, strong, healthy body.

A girl can dream, right?


  1. I can’t wait to see how it get tricked out, and the dust that will be collecting on it. #SUCKITLupus

  2. Gimp your ride and be proud that the way you roll is the way of a survivor. Progress is making the experience of disability less miserable, as well as recovery. Dream on, and you’ll get there,

  3. One day you will donate that chair to someone who needs it… and then that person will donate it to another… It’ll be the traveling chair that symbolizes that whoever uses it won’t be using it forever.

  4. Juju Cooper says:

    Just so you know, once you recover your wheelchair will become a popular household furnishing. We got one free on Craigslist (I’m furnishing my house completely with free stuff from Craigslist so that when I move I can just give it all away and not have to pack anything, but I digress…). Anyway, that free wheelchair is easily the most popular seat in the house or on the porch. Of course that could be because I got all my furniture free on Craigslist, so maybe it’s not the most comfortable.

    In any case, you will get better and your wheelchair will become a fun and functional furniture accessory and till then you’ll have a truly kewl ride. I love the flames idea. I’d tie dye mine but its cheesy vinyl. Hey, it was free on Craigslist and beggars can’t be choosers 😉

    BTW when you don’t need it anymore and are ready to post it for free on Craigslist let me know. I’d love to have a pair of them!

  5. I’ve just gone through the exactly same process: purchasing a wheelchair for a trip to Disney due to my lupus. I follow you on Twitter and always find inspiration in how you deal with what life sends your way, including lupus. Thank you for sharing your life and thoughts with me and with the world. You are a wonderful example of perseverance and hope. You make my life a little easier because I know I am not alone. Here’s to the day a cure is found and we both throw our wheelchairs and IV stands off a cliff.

  6. Glad you’re working hard & your recovery is imminent! 😉
    IMMINENT, I say! *healing vibes like whoa*

    Tough times but I know you’ll continue to rally us with #suckitlupus!
    You’ve got a big cheering squad here on the nets.

    PS–that’s a pretty big ball park they’ve got there–we went a couple nights before BlogHer, as well.

  7. Good for you for not letting lupus keep you down!! I hope soon that chair is collecting dust.

  8. What Jessica said!

    I have a bunch of ancient aunties who stopped being able to walk without tiring YEARS ago, because of various ailments (osteoporosis, arthritis, cancer), and they are in a war-torn country where we thought perhaps wheelchairs might be too expensive or difficult to find.

    The wheelchair that my dad bought sits in their house collecting dust, not because they are better, but because they are all too proud to use it.

    You are brave not just for yourself, but for your family, when you take it upon yourself to swallow your pride, not just to make outings easier for you, but more fun for them. All hail the Queen!

  9. The flames sound awesome but I totally get your feelings here. I’m struggling with watching my hubby walk around with a walking stick for support and REALLY hoping it’s temporary and PT will clear help. Hang in there through this next round of treatments!!

  10. ‘So sure, while it makes all the economic sense in the world, it just plain hurts.”

    It’s a means to an end, right? Another tool in the tool box, helping to get you back to where you want to be!

    Go go go! 🙂

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