Daily Prompt: Descend with Care

River Aar

There are some things between above and below that the human brain and body have to think about before making an attempt. This path is ideal, it goes up and down in a nice careful slope, accompanied with a bannister on the left and a promise of a resting place when you reach the top. This is the ascent, and any fool can do an ascent. One of the reasons I can do it. Of course, I would add that I am usually hanging onto the rail on the left and have a walking stick in my right hand, but just for the balance of course. There is an added danger of the wire fence having an electric current passing through it: not because of the humans, but the cows and sheep that often take walks in these fields.

I have only two legs, not four, but I can do it. Going up was never a big problem, and this is one of the reasons why I always take this path upwards from the river  bank. What is the point making a descent? When I reach the top I have a bench and a perfectly paved street leading to my home in the village – what could be better.

I was never an expert at going down. My feet did not want to stay with my legs and my head was doing something completely diferent, but where there is a will there is a bottom to slide down on, and in civilised places there are even stairs.

Solothurn 05.04 (8)

Of course these stairs are only for the advanced descenders amongst us. I can do it, but it would take me the best part of a quater of an hour, and I might, probable definitely would, stumble on the way. Luckily it is in a parking house where there are such things as lifts/elevators which I have learned to love and worship.

I remember a similar accident once when I was a working woman. It was in the days when we clocked in and out for lunch and work begin and end. I was younger and was deemed to be healthy, although my problems were probably already there, but did not yet have a name. It was lunch time, I had clocked out and this stupid clock was on a platform in between two stair cases. So OK, I did have high heels on, but somehow I made a false step and fell, no rolled, down the staircase (about 15 stairs made of stone). It was one of those days where I had some sort of guardian something watching over me. To crown this achievement the owner of the company happened to be at the base of the stairs and had watched my spectacular ascent. His first words were “you could have been killed” probably wondering if the company insurance would have to pay for the funeral. Anyhow I survived with a few bluish marks in various places where the sun does not normally shine, and the company owner probably breathed a sign of relief when he saw me back at my desk in the afternoon.

Today descending is not something in my  MS programme. My left foot is no longer attached to the left leg – one of the advantages when driving an automatic car – you do not need the left foot (at least my nurologist found it an advantage). I even have problems leaving my bed in the morning, but it works. I have my own system to do with gaining balance and I discovered it all by myself, as there is no book available “How to get out of bed”, it still has to be written. My cane is always parked next to my bed for emergencies, but I only use it when I am already standing and then only when I notice it might be a walking stick day. I usually avoid it at home.

So the next time you take a simple step down to reach ground level, think of the unfortunates where such a step is a small step for a normal human, but a big step for someone with balance problems.

Daily Prompt: Descend with Care

12 thoughts on “Daily Prompt: Descend with Care

    • When you are younger you just do not realised that one day you will get older and the body no longer wants to do what it should. My father passed away last year and was 100 years and 7 months. He could no longer walk with out assistane, but he could think and was still sound in mind. We can be thankful for small mercies.

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  1. My neighbor has steps back and front leading to her house. The risers are VERY high. I find I’m good with small risers (6 inches or so) like we have at our Post Office, but anything bigger? I have a very hard time going down. Steps are worse for me than a plain hill. But, it’s OK because I’ve figured out a way to do it. I said to her, “Don’t worry. This looks funny but it works.” 🙂 Like you, I’ve just had to figure out systems to adjust the world to my abilities.

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    • There is always a way somehow. Steps are steps and can be overcome with my stick, no big problem. My biggest problem if flat surfaces that are not as flat a they should be. A stone in the way, a piece of metal sticking out somewhere, just a trip with the foot, lose balance and fall – my biggest worry, because I cannot stand up again on my own. It might be a cable, a brick or anything, but unexpected – one of the nightmares of walking. Up to now I have been mainly very lucky, but have had so many near misses, that it will probably happen one day. I am glad we live on the ground floor and have a lift to the cellar.

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      • Yes. Getting up is very important and for me not easy, but at least possible. I was walking Dusty and Bear last week, my neighbor (their friend) was outside her house, they ran toward her, pulling me down. She had to hold them while I got up off the ground. It wasn’t pretty, but I managed and was pretty happy because four years ago, if I’d fallen, I wouldn’t have been able to get up. 😦 Yoga helped and deliberately practicing. I had to because there’s no one here to help me if I fall.

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  2. When I get out of bed it takes a bit of time and effort to get my left leg extended and able to support me. It is a painful process. A few years ago when getting out of bed because dangerous for me, we rearranged the bedroom to put my side of the bed along a short wall. Ron placed a dresser at the end of the wall flush with it. So when I get up I have the wall to support me, to lean on, to keep me from falling. I can then pick up my cane from its place, and walk towards the end of the bed. The dresser gives me another support and a hand hold. Hugs

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    • We really have to adjust our surroundings to suit our problems.One of the problems with my MS is spasticity of the musles when they get very stiff and cannot move so well, especially if I stretch my legs in bed. It passes off, but is very inconvenient. It often happens if I sit in a chair for a time. My bed is also organised that I can reach out for the wall and have support for my first steps of the day. My home cane (I have two) is always parked next to the bed although if I have a wall to guide me I do not have to use it. We just have to get used to touching things for support when moving.

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  3. I always thought it was me, because down has always been a much shakier business than up. I don’t seem to need so much balance going up, but down? That knee with the missing tendon gets very funky on the downhill. Unfortunately, in my world, if you go up, the down is inevitable.

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    • Everything that goes up must come down, but it is all according to how you do it. I am a true disciple of movement by elevaotor. It is fast and safe. Anything else is suspicious and not involves danger. I also get shaky knees in the downward direction.

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