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The Home And I
On August 1, 1955 three little Brinkmans were ardently making a welcome home sign for their Momma. Meantime back at the hospital Momma was filled with mixed emotions; her dream of the past two years was at last coming true. Yours truly was secretly frightened as to how adequately she could resume her former duties. This is beginning to sound very grim, when actually it hasn't been at all.
May I at this point introduce my wonderful hubby, Johnny, who some of you already know as a good natured, big hearted guy. Our youngsters, Dave, Dean, and Bonnie have all invaded the same school this fall, occupying the six, fourth, and first grades respectively (at least we hope so). Little blonde Bonnie soon became acquainted with her electric Mom and to my glee, shockingly enough, she accepted me. With my hardest customer won over. I was just chuckful of confidence.
When you analyze your situation, your handicap has given you more free time with your small-fry than you normally would have had. Dave has a full school schedule plus guard duty, coronet lessons, and basket ball. He and Dean love sports. They are bowling this year on Saturdays, after their chores have been attended to. They must prepare their own breakfasts, the menus are quite varied growing with each new recipe undertaken. While Dad shops on Saturdays, our trio makes beds does dishes, and gives me morning care along with a make-up job. Hollywood had better start brushing up.
Saturday evenings we work on Sunday school lessons and on whose turn it is to shine the shoes. After Church on Sundays occasionally the boys prepare dinner, with an experienced cook like Dad to pattern after not even Tums are necessary. Friday nights are school work conference nights, in which we go over individually the weeks work. The battle of the weeds, crab grass, etc., is won all together.
We try to participate in family activities together such as TV watching, drive-ins, enjoying Johnny's home movies, lumber paintings, good books, games, puzzles, assembling model airplanes, plus cook-outs and just good ole gabfests. Keeping busy promotes happiness and drives boredom away.
A Hoyer Lift, which lifts me daily to and from chair and into bathtub, has had a new wrinkle added to it ala hubby. He made a hook similar to a pretzel. This hook takes the place of the Hoyer Lift Arm. On to this hook your shortened strapped sling is attached. This enables me to get in and out of an automobile. Saves the expense of an auto lift.
Johnny painted a shuffleboard court on our driveway .Thanks to Miss Smaltz from the O.T. Dept. of Metropolitan General Hospital, I can join in the game. Miss Smaltz contrived a real keen gimic from a piece of ply-wood shaped like a shoe-sole, in front of which is an attached half circular plack used to hold your discs. This attached to the foot by straps placed on in roller skate fashion. The shoe-sole bottom has ball-bearings enabling one to slide the foot, thus releasing the disc.
Dad Reimers made a lightweight redwood ramp with wedged sides to prevent chair from tipping. It is especially practical for steep declines.
The extra long extension cord on my headset phone permits calls to be received from all sections of the home as well as yard.
Since I do not have a standing table, the rocking bed serves as a substitute. Simply roll bed flat and tilt foot of bed to its lowest degree. It helps to strengthen those lazy pins. The rocking bed footboard has been padded with thick sponge-rubber and then covered with washable plastic. Affords much comfort and helps keep your feet better positioned.
A large felt bulletin board or magic slate placed directly in front of me on wall helps keep me up to numerous events and reminders.
Johnny made up an aluminum square-shaped chest-piece adapter (connects hose to shell). Now I can be positioned closer to typewriter and it is much easier to see over when lying in bed.
When it is necessary for me to stay alone with my children, I can signal an urgent s.o.s. with an emerson alarm box which can be set off by a flick of a foot.
Are you troubled over trivialities such as losing your head, while sitting up in a frontseat of a car? Then you may be enthused over a head support that fits over the frontseat. I need this only when I use a positive pressure pipe.
Speaking of heads, the best method for washing my hair is to lower back of wheelchair, patient intact, draw up a table with large basin for head be hind the chair. Then victim can be easily drowned...oops...shampooed.
Its been fun sharing and comparing notes with all you good peoples and it would be nice hearing from you.