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ARTICLES / General / A Trip to the Dentist

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A Trip to the Dentist

By Micki LaVres

(Page 2 of 3)

I pushed Frank and his 250 pound wheelchair with all my strength as we crossed the intersection and started up the incline of the sidewalk. The beautiful sunny day had turned hot and humid, 92 degrees without a trace of shade between us and our van.

I was giving myself a private pep talk when suddenly I felt the distinctive sensation of an ill-timed hot flash.

Any woman who’s been there knows exactly what I’m talking about. (You guys, and more fortunate ladies, imagine wearing a down jacket, mittens and polar boots – in the Sahara.) I pictured myself passing out from heat stroke, my pinky finger caught on the attendant control with Frank dragging me slowly up the sidewalk.

In my exhaustion, I stopped pushing. “I have to stop and rest,” I told Frank. My husband – the eternal optimist – had what he thought was a brilliant idea. His mouth was too numb to puff, but he might be able to sip, which would move the chair in reverse. I agreed without hesitation, swinging the chair around so fast the Lindy Hoppers would have been proud.

My husband, the mechanical wizard, was correct again and with a simple sip, the chair began moving slowly in reverse. I was able to steer from behind with little effort and Frank was delighted that he could help.

We continued moving backwards slowly up the sidewalk as I turned my head from left to right looking behind me for obstacles in our path. Keep in mind we were on a fairly busy downtown street after 4:00 pm with traffic picking up as people headed home.

I noticed a few cars slowing, the occupants looking in our direction as they passed. I heard a beep-beep from one car. Someone waved from another.

Only when two very sweet ladies actually stopped and asked if we needed help, did I realize how utterly ridiculous we must have looked. Of course I declined their assistance, assuring them that we were fine and had everything under control. (The truth: I was ready to jump in Frank’s lap and drive the chair myself.)


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