Part I - Relationship Status: Different Perspectives from our mW Team

By mobileWOMEN Team

We at found that this Valentine’s Day sparked it’s usual passion but also this time, it sparked a passionate conversation regarding love and relationships. It all started when one of our contributors found herself among a group of single mobileWOMEN, discussing the viability of marriage when having a disability. These women conveyed that they didn’t know any other women that were married and weren’t even sure if marriage was a possibility for them.

After a few of us discussed creating an article about marriage, we realized that there are many dimensions and aspects of love. Marriage wasn’t necessarily the only road to happiness and love comes in many shapes and forms.

Fortunately, our mobileWOMEN team members have broad range of circumstances when it comes to relationships and love, so each of us agreed to share our experiences and thoughts on the subject. We decided one article was not enough to cover this complex topic so we have created a series of three posts based on the following:

Part I - Relationship Status: Different Perspectives from our mW Team
Part II - Looking for Love: Tips on Finding Your Significant Other
Part III - Celebrating Love in All Forms

We hope that you will enjoy the series and share it with others that you feel may find it beneficial. Ultimately, our best resource is one another so please share your thoughts on our Facebook page. We are so grateful for all of you. Let’s embrace the support that we can give each other and the love felt within our community!

Let's dive in to Part I - Relationship Status: Different Perspectives from our mW Team

Gadgets for Indepence Series: Spring Cleaning

By Lucy Lawrence

Whether you are able-bodied or one of the nearly 3.6 million wheelchair users living in the US, chances are you dread having to spend time cleaning house. Spring is a mere 2 months away, bringing with it one of the most dreaded occurrences of the year: spring cleaning. As daunting as an annual clean-up may be,  it is not the only time of the year you need to concern yourself with housework. Certain tasks such as doing the washing, cleaning the kitchen and bathroom, and sweeping floors need to be done on a regular basis. Unfortunately, many of these tasks can pose a far larger challenge for someone in a wheelchair. Thankfully, there are ways, such as the following, that will lighten the burden of household chores substantially.

Battery powered all purpose scrubbing brush
Think of  large electronic toothbrush designed for cleaning! These oscillating scrubbers such as the Sonic Scrubber, are ideal for someone with limited hand function and comes with a variety of heads to perform tasks such as scrubbing tile grout, polishing appliances and getting in those annoying nooks and crannies with minimal effort.

THE LOSS OF A CAREGIVER; The Story of Overwhelming Paralysis and the Terrifying Events of the What-Ifs

By Patty Kunze, RN, BSN and Roberta Palmer, RN
Frank & Patty Kunze 2013

In 2009 I became paralyzed from an auto accident. I thought that was one of the most difficult phases of my life. Learning how to function from a wheelchair, how to go from a totally independent woman at age 48 to now living life from the sitting position, forever. But wow, was I ever mistaken. In July, I lost my caregiver, my spouse of 29 years, my other half of my being, to cancer and I became paralyzed all over again. I was paralyzed due to grief while sitting in a wheelchair. We all experience sadness, but what happens when the source of the grief is your spouse, who happens to be your caregiver. The Rollin’ RNs decided to tackle this huge topic.

First off, let’s review the emotional stages of grief that we can all go through which are shock or disbelief, denial, bargaining, guilt, anger, depression, and acceptance/hope. I also feel there is one more stage that occurs before acceptance/hope and that is a state of being extremely overwhelmed. I will explain my feeling of being overwhelmed later but these stages are in no order and may occur anytime during the emotional rollercoaster.

Disbelief occurred in 2007. I begin my story in 2007 when my husband was diagnosed with malignant melanoma, the worst of all skin cancers. We had been married 19 years at this time but I couldn’t believe my husband was diagnosed with malignant melanoma. He had a small mole on his back that began to itch. As a nurse, I looked at it, gave my assessment (one that NEVER included cancer) and suggested we have it examined by a physician. The physician looked at the mole and said, “No big deal. We will remove it when it’s convenient to you.” It was removed shortly afterwards and then we were called to his office and given the news. Malignant Melanoma. Immediately after the surgery and recovery, we moved forward again, a tiny blip in our road of life. No biggie. Then in 2009, our auto accident occurred that left me a paraplegic, paralyzed completely from mid-chest down. Another stage came into being, guilt. Our SUV was being driven by my husband and even though the accident was not his fault, he felt guilt by not protecting me when the truck T-boned us by running a stop sign.