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Tripping Up and Rolling On

August 21, 2014

Fat HealthMy Boring-Ass Life

58I’ve been a bit busy lately.

I created a feast for my regional group of the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA) that was five courses, 25 dishes. Most of the recipes I used were my own recipes, adaptions (or redactions) of recipes that were in existence pre-1600. And then, with the help of friends, I executed this feast for about 90 people last Saturday.

I was exhausted after I did that. So much so that when I went to pick up my dog from my mother-in-law’s house, I tripped over some perfectly flat piece of concrete and somehow managed to sprain my knee. Yup, spent my whole weekend around sharp objects and fire (gas ovens and stoves) and didn’t hurt myself once (okay, the small burn I can’t even remember getting on the back of my right hand doesn’t count), but I get home safely and then trip over … the ground.

Seriously. Who does that?

Apparently, I do.

Since I’ve had knee injuries before in both knees (the right knee had a meniscus tear in 1999, and the left knee had a dislocated patella in 2000, but because I didn’t have insurance it became really complicated and finally had a reconstruction surgery for it in 2007), I decided not to chance it and went to the doctor. Well, that, and because it’s my right knee, and by the time I finished driving home I was in excruciating pain.

The doctor has diagnosed it as a sprained knee, with a possible meniscus tear, but we won’t know for sure about that for a couple of weeks. And he told me to stay off of it for a week to two weeks.

Did I mention I have another event for the SCA over Labor Day weekend? And this one is a camping trip.

I hope that I won’t be in so much pain by the time I go camping, but decided to plan ahead. In case I am, I thought maybe I could rent a wheelchair. A standard wheelchair like the one in the picture is going to be okay for most of the terrain I’ll be wheeling myself through, and the parts that aren’t I can get some transport to where I want to go.

I didn’t realize how easy it would be to rent a wheelchair. Or how frustrating.

I called up the local medical supply place, and they have chairs for rent, at a reasonable price even. Huzzah! And when I asked if they had large chairs available for fat people, the lady on the other end of the phone told me they had a chair with a 20″ seat.

Now, I realize that 20″ is more roomy than the standard airplane seat these days, but that’s a standard wheelchair seat size and just a bit too small for my behind.

I tried again. “No, I need bigger, as I’m fat. I don’t mean fat like supermodels think they are fat, I mean really fat, as in obese.”

“Oh! I have a 24″ seat, that’s rated up to 400 pounds.”

Thank you. Now we’re speaking the same language.

I hope I won’t need to use it, that the pain will be a low enough level that I can manage without it. Because even with a comfortable wheelchair, it’s a pain trying to push oneself over  grass and dirt. I know because I used a wheelchair for six months before and after the knee reconstruction surgery on my left knee at the end of 2007. The tile floors in malls are awesome to wheel over, concrete is not bad, packed dirt is okay, but ya gotta always be watching for rocks. The best ground where I’ll be camping is going to be packed dirt.

And at least, with the appropriate equipment, I’ll be able to attend the event, instead of having to stay at home.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. August 21, 2014 10:26 am

    This – I tried again. “No, I need bigger, as I’m fat. I don’t mean fat like supermodels think they are fat, I mean really fat, as in obese.” – elicited a smile from me.

  2. vesta44 permalink
    August 21, 2014 2:51 pm

    Yay for being able to rent the wheelchair you need. I hope most of the areas you’re going to be rolling over are level, because going up even a gradual grade can be very tiring (for either the person pushing the chair or the one in the chair rolling it).
    I think it’s getting easier to rent mobility aids when we need them, something for which I will be eternally grateful. And it’s not that difficult to find them to fit fat people, even those of us who are really fat. My husband isn’t really fat (at my current weight of 400 lbs. I don’t consider anyone who is 250 lbs really fat, just sorta kinda maybe fat), and we can rent one of the GoGo mobility scooters for him (it has a weight limit of 275 lbs) for $20 a day, which is very reasonable. There’s a Pioneer Power thing coming up that he wants to go to, and he just had a revision done to his left knee replacement, so he’s not going to want to be walking all over the place on uneven ground. It’s also small enough and light enough that we can put it in the middle of my van (where the second row of seats used to be) and still have a bit of room (my lift and scooter take up the back part of the van). We learned early on that pushing someone (or yourself) in a wheelchair isn’t easy if the ground is rough (like grassy areas) or is hilly – going up even a short hill can wear you out if you aren’t used to doing that.

    • bronwenofhindscroft permalink
      August 22, 2014 12:03 am

      The areas I’m going to be wheeling in are relatively flat, although they are semi-grassy, rocky, and compacted dirt. I’ve used a wheelchair before, at the end of 2007 through to half of 2008, when I had my knee replacement surgery.

      I have a few people lined up to help me, so it won’t just be me and my arm power (it’s been a while since my arms have gotten such a workout). And there’s also a hospitality department, which will have golf carts to get me greater distances. 🙂

  3. Jennifer Hansen permalink
    August 21, 2014 3:51 pm

    Ooooo! Are you planning to caparison your wheelchair? Mobility aids offer so many fun possibilities! I’ve seen photos of a scooter done up to look like a goat cart and a wheelchair where the user just thought, “Hey, if the culture I am garbed in this weekend had had these things, how would they have decorated them?” and rolled on into camp with a full-scale Mongol ride.

    I’m co-feastocrating an event this October that features period recipes using local ingredients. Gosh, it’s hard to find period recipes using fresh (okay, in our case, frozen) berries. Turns out that the health mavens of the Middle Ages said that raw berries were bad for the humors. (Ever notice that the stuff that was considered to make people slow, dull, etc., was by and large locally produced peasant food, and the stuff that was best for you was imported and/or expensive? Hmmmm.)

    • bronwenofhindscroft permalink
      August 22, 2014 12:05 am

      Ever notice that the stuff that was considered to make people slow, dull, etc., was by and large locally produced peasant food, and the stuff that was best for you was imported and/or expensive?

      You mean, just like today? 😉

      I’m pretty sure I won’t be doing anything fancy to the wheelchair. If I was going to have it more than one day before the event, I might, but I’m getting it on Tuesday, and the event starts on Wednesday. Not much time for me to think about decorating it.

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