Chronic illness: Mobility aid

Chronic illness-mobility aid

So I have been rocking a cane lately. I have gotten used to how to walk with it now. Since it isn’t for a leg problem, but rather vertigo, I had to figure out the proper rhythm to it.

I bought it months ago. And I needed it. Then I stopped using it thinking I could just walk with my feet more braced apart, looking at the ground, and shuffling with this constant sensation I was falling.

This is for a few reasons why I didn’t want to use the cane:

  1. No one likes to admit they need a mobility aid, even if it is some of the time. And I didn’t like it. It seemed to make me stand out in public in a way I didn’t like.
  2. I didn’t like the feeling I needed any assistance. I just kept thinking this will get better and I don’t need help, when obviously I do and it isn’t getting better.
  3. And, of course, typical of what I often think I didn’t like the sense of weakness. Grin and bear it sort of person. But you can’t manage vertigo like that. It needs rest. And it impairs you cognitively. And it is difficult to get around at times. And there is the actual falling issue as well.

I’ll give you an example. I went to the bank because my internet was down, so no online banking and with my financial situation being problematic it meant, that day, I needed to get there fast. My mom gave me a lift which is of great assistance since I cannot drive now. I went in and stood in line. No problem. Okay, problem. Sitting upright is actually a problem for any duration. Standing? Much more of a problem and much faster. I weaved. I felt the ground moving beneath me, worse I should say, than earlier. And then the waves of dizziness and that sense I was going to just drop like a rock.

And I see a chair. Usually, banks have a lower desk for seniors and other people who need it to be served while seated. This bank, for whatever reason, decided not to. Just piled a bunch of promotional junk on it. But the chair was there. And at the branch I was working at before my leave, people would sit down and their place in line would be held.

But I didn’t. Because I don’t look sick. Because I am young(ish) and I don’t look sick. Because I Knew I would be judged as lazy for doing so. And even though I was feeling worse by the minute I couldn’t do it. A senior who came in later, sat down in it. And I thought ‘Thank God I didn’t sit down there to be judged by people telling me a senior should have the seat.’ Sadly by the time I got to the counter I was totally spaced out and couldn’t think straight. Since I don’t think she understood what I was getting at she couldn’t really help me. So it was days later I figured out the problem on the account. But then I was online, so I fixed it that way. I get a lot of dizziness and confusion much worse at night. Being just brilliant I did my bills then. And paid the wrong biller and I had to request the funds be returned to me. I have been doing that a lot. Mistakes upon mistakes. Forgetting how to do things. Not a good time for banking I have determined.

But I could have sat down in that chair, not made myself so much worse, because I do have a problem.

All because I wouldn’t use the cane which garnishes attention because I am young(ish). My spouse said it wouldn’t happen in the future if I USED my cane because it is a visible sign I have a disability. If I had sat down with my cane, they would know I had cause to. Ah, yes, valid point.

I get it now. I need to use it. A cane is a tool. It helps me. I will use it.

I will rock it.

Although I don’t like the one we got at like a drugstore. Ugly thing. But there were some spectacular ugly ones there. So lesser ugly.

What I like that is more my style is simple carved wood ones. Like this one, I found on Amazon.

It suits me. All the wooden ones appeal to me. And if in the future I have any money at all, I will get one like this.

Or maybe this one with the fancy top and a darker wood.

They I would really rock the cane!

I just had to get over myself. I don’t look weak and I should perceive myself to be weak by using a mobility device when I need to. I have over this last week realized how much it helps. And, yeah, I would prefer not to use it, but I also prefer being able to walk without falling into things all the time.

Other chronic illness posts:

Chronic illness and worry

Chronic illness: Knowing the past is fearing the future

Chronic illness: Asking for help

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16 comments

  1. I have struggled with this for the same reason. I was in a government lineup and there were no chairs. Luckily there was a post I could lean against so I didn’t fall over. When I got to the agent I explained very nicely that they should have chairs in the lineup for people with difficulty standing. He looked at me like I had three purple heads because a) I had only had to wait 5-7 minutes, but that’s far too long in the funhouse by yourself in public and b) like you I’m young-ish and “don’t look like I’m sick”. I hadn’t thought about using a cane either for bad vertigo days or just as a tool/signboard for the rest of the world. Hmmm… keep rocking it! 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It doesn’t do much when the vertigo gets severe because walking is the last thing on your mind. But when it is moderate or mild it really adds some stability I find. I am just able to move better, and the falling sensations are less severe.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. OMG!!! Same story here, there is some sort of stigma attached to using a cane unless you are totally gray haired and all wrinkly!!! I bought one of those fold up steel canes and I hate it.
    I talked to a friend the other day that has back issues and she had 2 canes behind the counter in her record store, yes record store, cd’s also but anyway I said “hey, I need one of those are they for sale” she laughed, pulled one of them out and a steel sword cane out with the handle… I said “oh hell no, I won’t get past security to board the plane with that!!!” The other one was her personal one and she said that she got hers at the arts and crafts fair.
    I, like you, looked on Amazon and the one you have pointed out was the exact one I found that I liked. The pain doctors upped my prescription so I am dizzier than crap, and of course it is raining again so I can’t tell if it is dizzy from meds or stowed up from the rain…. anyways, I am with ya!!!!! Hate to use that stupid thing, but it is going to cost more when we fall, pride and money.
    Hoping for a pain free day soon…

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Totally understand. I really only need it for balance and dizziness and I find that when people start staring at me I start to drag my foot or do something stupid like drooling or wiping fake snot off my face just so they move on…. I know stupid but can be funny….

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Mine is expensively colored every 6 months when I go to see my family in Virginia. One of my nieces and my getaways and comforts. Last time she had every strand of my hair colored. Way too long in the chair though.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I didn’t even know a cne would help with the vertigo! I feel your pane about rocking the cane—I’m the same way about sometimes (supposed to always) wearing a mask to protect myself from perfumes and cleaners. I don’t like it at all, but it is a clear sign to avoid me! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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