Wednesday, February 28, 2007


I woke up this morning thinking that since I still
hadn't heard anything about getting my iBOT, I
was going to have to somehow induce a leg spasm
and kick someone's butt. Which reminded me of a
funny story...

I was in high school. My boyfriend and I were sitting
in my house being bored teenagers. He was sitting on
the 2nd or 3rd step on the stairway leading to upstairs
and I was sitting in my chair facing him. I showed him
that if I "tickled" the bottom of my feet, my feet would
twitch. My legs/feet sometimes have a mind of their
own. Not so much anymore, but when I was younger they
did. Anyway, he was sitting there with his legs apart and
he took my foot in his hands and tickled my foot. A fierce
leg spasm came out of nowhere and I kicked him in between
the legs. For a second I was horrified, but I quickly got
over it. I'm not sure he thought it was quite as funny as
I did.

The photo I am posting today is of the beautiful Colin. Gotta
love that 80's hair! He was a great guy. Through lots of moves
between both of us over the years, we've lost touch. Last I knew
he was an architect in Chicago. That was about 9 years ago. I
miss him!

But back to the iBOT. I got a call this morning from the therapist
who needs to send a letter to my insurance company. She's been
sick and away from work. She said she's going to get the letter
written today. It sounds like things are starting to move. Good
thing because I don't like kicking anyone's butt. I try to do it
only when it is necessary. :D

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

I coulda

On Friday my friend Heather told me about a yard and
garden show at the Convention Center. Being rather
fond of plants, I went on Saturday with my daughter.

With no cash on me, and an entrance fee to pay, I stopped
at the ATM located in the convention center. I can easily
use some ATMs. This one I couldn't do on my own. I could
reach everything okay, but the way the screen was positioned
and the way the light was hitting it made it impossible for
me to read the screen. My daughter was there though, so she
read it for me.

I coulda done it by myself if I had my iBOT.

The best vendor there was from Hawaii. They had tons of
amazing orchids. If you know me or have been reading my
blog, you know that close-up photography of plants is my
thing. The orchid display people displayed nearly all
their orchids at eye level of a standing adult. Therefore,
I wasn't able to get any decent photos.

I coulda gotten some great shots if I had my iBOT.

I went back the next day, this time without the kid. In
the final hour or so, people were wanting to get rid of
their plants and so they were selling them at good prices.
The really amazing orchids were pretty much all sold, but
I did end up bringing two home. When I went to pay for
them she said that they preferred cash. So back to the
cash machine I went, only this time my daughter wasn't
there to help me. Luckily there was a lady there using
the machine when I got there, and I asked her if she would
help me. She was happy to help, and it wasn't a big deal,

I coulda done it by myself if I had my iBOT.

I am posting some photos I took of the orchids iBOT. Ha ha,
get it? iBOT - I bought.

Oh shut up.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Narrator : “Go where you want to go…”

John : “It was the first time since I started
losing my muscles… that my world expanded.”

Narrator : “Do what you want to do…”

Megan : “If you want to take a walk through the
fields, there’s no obstacles.”

Richard : “With the iBOT® I feel like I can get
through my days a lot easier.”

Megan : “It’s like amazing. Like you’re just like
eye-level, it’s like you don’t have to look up at

John : “What this chair has allowed me to do is to
continue my practice. If I didn’t have this chair,
I wouldn’t be working today.”

Narrator : “They’re talking about the INDEPENDENCE®
iBOT® 4000 Mobility System, the revolutionary mobility
device that’s opening broad new horizons for people with


The above is from a video on It's a 3 minute,
45 second video and it's pretty good. If you want to see it,

go to

Click on Owner Service.

Under the photo of the man in an iBOT, click on "Read More
iBOT Mobility System Experiences".

Near the bottom on the right it says, "Click here to see how
the iBOT Mobility System is changing lives." Click on that
and watch the video.


I talked to my rep yesterday and my iBOT has STILL not been
ordered. I'm getting a little ticked off. If it finally
gets ordered this coming week, I might have it by mid April.
If everything had gone as planned, I would already have it.

Friday, February 23, 2007

I am so sad

I had to take a photo of this worn and broken
down flower because it reminded me of myself.

Everyday I ache for my iBOT. This waiting
game has me tattered and torn. Someone may
as well come and trod upon me. Squash me
to the ground. Put me out of my misery.

But really, this waiting crap stinks. I'm
wanting to take photos of trees before leaves
appear. Although traveling through my neighbor-
hood in my manual is possible, it's something I
don't want to do. My shoulders would never
forgive me. Plus, it's so wet outside. Wet
sidewalks equal wet wheels which leads to wet
hands and sleeves which results in an uncomfortable
and unhappy me.

So I wait. It's going to be at least another
6 weeks because the thing hasn't even been ordered
yet. I think there will be leaves on the trees by

I can't part the clouds so that the sun can shine
on this little flower, but I can try to light a
fire under some people's butts. That is what I
must do now. Wish me luck.

Monday, February 19, 2007


I love to explore. My neighborhood, forests, beaches,
small towns, cities, foreign countries, museums, cemeteries,
just about anything. As you can probably imagine, many
places are hard, and often impossible, to explore when you
have to use a wheelchair to get around.

When I was 5 years old, my family and I moved from a city
in Minnesota to the country in Wisconsin. We lived next to
a beautiful lake, and we were surrounded by woods. The
photo above is a picture taken from our front yard. (The
dog is jumping and popping bubbles in his mouth.)

Exploring the lake and the woods were a favorite activity.
There was a pond back in the woods that very few people
knew about. I absolutely loved being there. I didn't
get to go very often though because I wasn't allowed to
go by myself. I had plans of going there by myself when
I was older though. Of course it never crossed my mind
that at 8 years old I would become a paraplegic, and going
to that pond would become impossible.

There we lots of other great places to explore too. The
property next to ours was a very old abandoned farm. It
was build by a wealthy lumberman in the late 1800s or early
1900s. He lived in Chicago, and this place was his summer
vacation home. There was a huge seven bedroom house, a horse
barn, a cow barn, a chicken coup, silos with the most fantastic
ferns growing in them, a small two room house that was perfect
for a play house for my sister and I (and the two neighbor
girls who were killed in the car accident). There were woods
behind our house with skunks and porcupines and an old shack.
There was the lakeshore with lots of neat rocks to find and
crawdads to uncover. (I actually still have some of the rocks
that I found there. I've passed them on to my daughter.) There
was a big field across the highway with all kinds of berries to
pick and bugs to discover. A short walk up the highway led to
some horses in a field. I remember sticking my hands through
the fence, and them gently taking sugar cubes from my hands.

Those exploring days abruptly ended that August evening because
of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. No more going to
the pond. No more visiting the horses. Exploring the lakeshore
and the field and the old buildings were very limited. If the iBOT
existed back then, many of those places would have still been
accessible to me.

As I wait for my iBOT, I look forward to all the places I will be
exploring that I cannot currently explore in my manual chair. Sure,
the iBOT has limitations. I know I won't be climbing Mt Hood in my
iBOT. But there are so many other places I've only dreamed of

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Not a happy Valentine's Day

When I first started this blog I thought that
I might get my iBOT by Valentine's Day. I spoke
with the rep this morning and the letter of
medical neccessity has not even been written
yet. I'm bummed. The weather is getting better
and I want my iBOT so much. I'm ready for it
NOW, but it's tied up because of insurance.
In the end, insurance probably won't pay a dime.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Another good thing about the iBOT

If you've been reading this blog or if you
know me personally, you probably know that I
have two dogs. You probably also know that I
take them to the dog park regularly. You probbaly
also know that dogs poop... a lot. You probably
also know that dog people have to clean up after
their dogs and dispose of the stuff appropriately.

You probably don't know that when I was a kid,
my mom used to clean dirt off my face by licking her
thumb and then wiping my face with her saliva coated
thumb. She now claims to have never committed such
atrocities, but my memories of it are so vivid, it
almost seems like it just happened yesterday. My
mom cannot argue that it only happened in my night-
mares because my sister witnessed and was also a
victim to our mother's torture. Between the spit
thumb and her goulash, I really think my sister
and I deserve an apology, but anyway...

I vowed to never ever do that to my children, and
I'm proud to say that I haven't. There was one
time when my thumb starting heading towards my
tongue and my tongue started to come out of my
mouth, but I caught myself within a matter of

Do you know there are individually wrapped wet
wipes? Much of my childhood trauma could have
been avoided if my mom had kept a few of them
with her wherever she went. Sadly, she didn't,
and I have the permanent emotional scars to prove

I was at the park yesterday and Gus did his thing.
As I rolled through the grass and dead leaves, I
didn't realize that I ran over some doggie diarrhea.
It stuck to my wheel and half a revolution later,
it was all over my coat sleeve and glove. This is
where the wet wipes come in. I always keep a few
with me. Always. You just never know when your
kid is going to have dirt on their face or when
you're going to get dog shit on your coat.

What in the world does this have to do with an iBOT?
Running over dog poop won't be such a disaster in
the iBOT!!! The wheels on the iBOT are smaller and
don't come near my coat sleeves! And instead of
touching the wheels, I move a joystick! This is
great news because as I was trying to clean up my
coat yesterday, I got a little on my hand. I know,
it's gross and I apologize for being so graphic, but
it did happen. I cleaned myself as best as I could
with the wipes and then I went home and washed 500
times with soap and water.

P.S. Yesterday I was telling my friend Bill (who is also
a wheelchair user) about my experience and he told me that
wheelchairs are feces magnets. I didn't believe him but
then I checked my owner's manual, and sure enough, right
there in bold letters: DANGER - wheelchairs attract shit.

Today's photographs were brought to you by the
letter h. ;) :D

Wednesday, February 7, 2007


I was at my bank today and so I found out
approximately how much per month I'll be
paying for the iBOT. I can pay it off in
5 years at $500.00/month, $211.00/month in
25 years, or somewhere in between.

Kinda hurts to see the numbers. But I truly
believe it will be worth every penny! :)

Monday, February 5, 2007

Would have been nice to have my iBOT today

The day isn't even over and I've already had 5
experiences that have made me wish I had my iBOT.

1. When I took my dogs to the dog park today, it
was a muddy mess. There is a paved path, but when
the dogs do their business, they do it out in the
grassy muddy area. I had to ask another dog person
there to pick up my dog's doo today because I was
afraid of getting stuck in the mud. She had 3 dogs
of her own, so I doubt she minded, but with the iBOT
I would have been able to do it myself.

2. I went to get an oil change and when the guy stuck
his head in my car, he said, "You must have a dog, I can
smell it". So right after that, I went to Target to get
some Febreze. I was also in need of small garbage bags,
and in the want of a new lamp. Located at my eye level,
the Febreze wasn't a problem. The other two items were.
I spent a good 45 minutes looking at lamps and shades
and mixing and matching. There was one shade on the very
top shelf that I couldn't reach. I couldn't decide if the
shade was ugly or cool. I wanted to see it up close, and
there was a customer close by that I could have asked to
get it for me, but, uh, I was embarassed. I thought she
would think it was the ugliest lamp shade she ever saw,
and she would laugh at me for wanting it. Seriously.
Not laugh out loud at me, but go home that evening and
say to her husband, "I was at Target today and this lady
in a wheelchair asked me to get a lamp shade down for her
and it was the most hideous shade I've ever seen!" I ended
up buying no lamp and no lamp shade. None of them did
anything for me except for the ugly one.

3. Still in Target, I went for the garbage bag section. The
bottom 5 or so shelves were filled over 32 million boxes of all
brands and types of large garbage bags. The 2 boxes of small
garbage bags that they had were on the very top shelf. Much to
my surprise, there was no one around to get one of the boxes
for me. Now I don't know what was up with that, cuz the garbage
bag section is usually the happening aisle... It was rather
early so I guess all the cool kids were still in bed, dreaming
of their day of hanging in the garbage bag aisle as well as
recovering from yesterday's garbage bag aisle hanging. Anyway,
I didn't feel like waiting and so I left without my garbage bags.

But it wasn't a completely useless trip to Target because my
car now smells like Febreeze with a hint of dog. And I'm also
in possession of a bag of rocket balloons and a sponge that I
didn't have before. Did you know that it's impossible to
leave Target without more things than you planned on purchasing?
Today I left with only 2 extra things, which is quite an
accomplishment if I do say so myself.

4. At home in the hallway. I've got this box of junk that
isn't usually in the hallway. It's slowly making it's way
to Goodwill. It might make it a few more feet closer to the
door tomorrow. I figure by this time next year, it will have
arrived at it's Goodwill destination. Since I'm not used
to it being there, I apparently cut it a bit too close
and I crushed my finger between my wheel and the corner
of the bench. I just now looked at it, and there is a pretty
bruise there. This happened to my middle finger. Oh geez, I
just realized that I'm probably being punished by a higher
power because I've made too much use of that finger lately.

5. On my front porch. I'm out there getting the newspaper
and I'm in a hurry because there is a huge spider above me
and I want to get out of there as soon as possible. I crash
into the porch bench, smashing my finger on my other hand.
For real. Not my middle finger though. It was my pointer
finger. What the??? I guess I'm also being punished for
all the pointing and laughing at people.

What is it with my fingers and benches? I suppose next a bench
will fall from the sky and crush my pinky finger because I use
the nail on that one for snorting all that cocaine. Stupid
bench gods. I really think life would be better without them.

Please note: I am joking about benches falling from the sky.
I don't flip people off. I don't point at people. I don't
snort cocaine. Kids don't hang out in the garbage bag aisle.

Saturday, February 3, 2007