As my rheumatoid arthritis gradually takes over my ability to walk I am so aware of that "look" of giving up. I might have to drag around the walker as part of my body but that doesn't mean I've given up at all. Lately I've noticed people giving us poor sick oldies gifts that we have to say thanks for but are the I've given up type of gift. I thought maybe if they read this they'll think a little more about the person they are gifting and how that person lives.
My walker has become my home away from home. It all starts in the morning when I decide what I will do for the day. Once out of my bedroom the walker must carry everything I need or I'll be the "I give up" person who has to rely on someone else to get the things I forgot. When I look at patterns for a walker bag I wonder just what they expect to be carried in it...glasses and a tissue? My bag must be able to handle a tablet and kindle, medicines, makeup, hair brush, lots of tissues, nail items if I break a nail, maybe sewing items I'm working on or knitting items, a book, a drink, keys, phone, hand cream, paper and pen, glasses and a sweater.
Now if I'm going out for the day it has to carry even more items like a drink for taking medicines, socks, wipes, umbrella for the sun or rain, a snack and sunglasses. Why socks? Well I wear compression stockings that get awful hot so I always carry a pair of regular socks along. Who could put all this in an envelope sized bag? Even people in a nursing home want to take along a sweater when they leave their room. Try putting a sweater over the rail of a walker without it ending up on the floor.
Three days ago I started to make my "I didn't give up" bag. With nice weather coming we'll be out more often and even a trip to the rear of the yard is a long distance if you forgot something. I started with cutting heavy fabric and finding heavy straps. Then I sat at my machine that has had no care given to it since we left Texas and I have sewn on it without cleaning it up. Yuck...full of stuff and a dull needle that had to be fixed before I started.
Then I took a plastic place mat gotten at the dollar store and cut it into 3 equal pieces. This will be covered with batting and fabric and will be the insert for the bag bottom.
I sewed up the outer fabric, the batting and the lining of the bag and cut the corners to 4 inches.
After putting the 3 sections together I pinned the lining over the outer edge.
I called it a day and went to bed. Sometime in the middle of the night RA decided to take over and it kept me in bed for the next 3 days. This time it wanted my right knee and it took it. Now the walker is more important then ever.