Wednesday, 5 November 2014

The Blotting Technique

When you are living with a severe physical disability there are a lot of times when you just have to swallow your pride and get on with the task at hand, no matter how embarrassing it might be.

Such a situation like this arose for me quite recently. I use freeway ceiling track hoists for all of my transfers; wheelchair to bed, wheelchair to different wheelchair and wheelchair to toilet.  On this occasion, during my daily toilet excursion, having finished my business and wanting to transfer back into my wheelchair, the hoist decided to stop working.  This left me swinging, midair, helpless and half naked! Thankfully I avoided the intervention of
Reading’s finest firemen due to the ingenuity, resourcefulness and persistence of my mother and sister!

Believe me, I have plenty of other examples such as a cystoscopy (if you’ve ever had one, you’ll know what I mean!!), all the times I go topless for the male doctors to give me a heart scan and, one of my personal faves, the time when I was on a hospital ward and the nurses ‘accidentally’ pushed me half naked outside of my curtained area.

I am able to look back on all these occasions without fear and maybe even with amusement!  All of these incidences are times where you just have to 'blot' the embarrassment out of your mind, ignore the fact that you feel incredibly useless and undignified and focus on the task at hand.  The chances are that those who are helping you, be it family, nurses, doctors, friends or indeed firemen, will just want to help no matter what the situation.

I like to refer to this as my blotting technique.  Blotting can be defined as to make obscure; hide, (blotting definition) and when applied it can be used to effectively ‘forget’ the embarrassing feature of a situation and soldier on regardless.  What choice is there but to 'just get on with it'?

As a side note, my hoist is fixed now and I avidly await, with stiff upper lip, the next time I shall use my blotting technique.

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