Of all the experiences I thought 2020 might bring, altering my son’s various pieces of equipment while being assisted over facetime by his lovely physio is not something I expected. However, 8 weeks since he was last in school and a fairly impressive growth spurt have rendered this necessary… the Dude is growing like a weed (as 9 year old boys have a tendency to) and although his wheelchair is easy enough to tweak, his standing frame is a different matter…
During life pre-covid, this would have been a simple enough task – a quick call to Ruth (his physio), followed by a home visit, a few tweaks with various allan keys/spanners and within a few minutes the stander would once again be fitted perfectly to Sam. Due to the severity of Sam’s health issues he is currently ‘shielded’; in other words, he’s at such high risk from covid19, that he has to be fully isolated from other people.
As he relies on us for his 24/7 care this also means that WE also have to be fully isolated. You don’t realise how many people you usually interact with in an average week until you CAN’T interact with them.
And that includes the people we rely on to support Sam, like physiotherapists. I really miss seeing his usual care team, chatting to his school office staff as I pass on appointment details, and all the mundanity that is now missing from our lives. Thank goodness for technology allowing us to video call. I swear, by the end of this I will have gained an enormous number of new IT skills.
I never really appreciated the power of video calling before; over the last 2 months it has allowed Sam to ‘see’ his grandparents, school friends, teachers (who are going above and beyond right now for these children) and has allowed me to continue doing my job as a lecturer. It has now also shown its use in Sam’s day to day care; without the equipment that helps him daily Sam’s life would be a lot poorer.
It may not be the ideal, but for the moment it is enough.