2015 - Ataxia Adaptations

Adapting to Life with Ataxia

As my Ataxia symptoms began to ramp up, I gradually added more and more things to help me cope.

Until you lose your balance, you don't realize how important it is.  I marvel when children or adults bound up or down steps without even holding the rail.  Wow!  I used to be able to do that.  And, I used to be able to take yoga and improve my balance with practice.  I could do the 'hardest' balance poses with ease.

Giving up Activities

My first step to adapt was to give up activities .. many once cherished.

I fell off a ladder so I stopped going up on steps.

I had to use a railing to go up and down steps.

My snow skiing kept deteriorating.  At first, I blamed it on various things.  When I finally realized that it was my balance, I gave it up.

I used to love tennis but after a fall on the court, I had to quit.

For a while, I was able to hike with a hiking stick, but it quickly got to where I could not handle any incline or decline.

I gave up on bicycling after a fall.  I bought an adult tricycle which did allow me to ride, but I fell on the trike, and I wish I had gotten a recumbent instead.  I was concerned about getting in and out of a recumbent, and that would have been hard.  But, I would have felt more secure once in the seat.

I used to be able to walk with friends using two walking sticks.  Now, I am too slow to keep up with able-bodied friends.

Adaptation Aids

After spilling coffee after painstaking preparation, I purchased silicone lids to help me carry drinks without spilling.

 

To be continued ...