My new semi-independent life

Last Friday morning I woke up early for an 8am Pilates session. I slept in and I rushed to get ready. When I was carrying the milk to the table my foot gave way and I fell backwards. Luckily I put my elbow out and landed on that instead of my head.

Falling over is common practice for me because of my poor balance. So that morning I got back up and carried on with my day.

Later on Mum and I got out of the car and I was in complete agony. My lower back was aching and I was barely able to walk. Thankfully I was spending the night at my parents house so I was able to rely on them for support.

Just to let some of you know, I moved out of home three weeks ago. I am currently living on my own and am enjoying it. However, I did have the fall in my flat, which meant that I had no one to help me.

This fall made my parents think, and made me think as well. I was lucky that the fall wasn’t major. If it had been, and I was stuck on the floor, unable to get to a phone, what would I have done?

These are things that a person with a disability has to take into consideration when moving out of home.

My father suggested getting an emergency button that is connected to 000, so if something were to happen I could call for help. This is something I will look into. Does anyone have this set up in their home? If you do, could you please provide me with any information.

Another issue that has come up since moving out of home is shopping for groceries. My flat is on the first floor and there isn’t a lift from the ground floor. I have to walk up twenty steps to get to my door. If I were to go shopping, there is no way that I could carry everything up in one go. I would have to make a number of trips and that is too much for me to do. Currently my mother is buying my shopping for me and bringing it over. But one of my reasons for moving out of home is to gain some independence.

Yes, I have heard of on-line supermarket shopping and I have even registered for it (if I can remember my username and password!), I just haven’t gotten around to it just yet. So next week, someone dare me to order my shopping online!

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10 thoughts on “My new semi-independent life

  1. My boyfriend’s Oma has one of those buttons. Very handy. You press the button, and they call to see if you need any help. It’s a speaker system, so you can be anywhere in the house etc.

  2. Hi Tully. I got my mother a personal alert system with an emergency button when she was alive, so I know all about how they work, where to get one, etc.

    You get a button that you put around your neck and a box that connects to your phone line.

    Basically you have four choices:

    1) There are a number of devices you can get that call a series of numbers. when you press the button. There is a setup cost but no ongoing fees. However, there is no backup answering service that’ll answer your call as a last resort or call an ambulance if nobody else can, it relies on one of your nominated people to answer and be able to get to you in a reasonable amount of time.

    2) Personal alert Victoria, which is run by the government. When you press the button on your pendant, a box connected to your phone line rings a particular number where specially trained people would answer your call. They would call your nominated people and if necessary, can arrange an ambulance. If there aren’t people who can get to you in time and are willing to participate then they can arrange a community health person to do that.

    This is free. You wait to be assessed and if approved, go on the waiting list, and when you get to the end of the waiting list, the personal alert system is installed and it is totally free.

    Contact point is your local council’s aged services section. or read http://www.health.vic.gov.au/agedcare/services/pav/index.htm

    3) A personal assistance services that is privately run. They have a monitoring service and you pay an installation fee and monthly fee.

    The service that is part of Personal Alert Victoria (MEPACS and possibly one other) is also available privately.

    The Yellow Pages has more info.

    4) You can start off with 3) and apply for 2). You pay an installation fee and a monthly fee until you get to the end of the waiting list, after which you get a free service. If you use the same system as 2) but privately, I don’t think you need to have anything uninstalled and reinstalled.

    Personally, I’d go for 4), otherwise 3), 2) and 1) in that order of preference. My mother had 2) (it was her choice) and the service was very good.

    Also, regarding the supermarket shopping, if you get a letter from your doctor saying that you need help, and give it to the supermarket (I know Coles and Woolworths do this), you’ll be able to ring them up and order your shopping. They will do the shopping for you and deliver it to you.

    • Hi Liron

      I haven’t even read your whole comment yet, but thank you for information. I will look into it tomorrow.

      Also, I received your email and will reply shortly.

      Thank you!

  3. tully,
    your plans sounds very exciting and i wish you all the best on your travels.
    i have always wanted to try the supermarket shopping online but have never done it either! Let me know how it goes if you do!!
    xx

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