MICHIGAN CITY— “I’M NOT READY TO PREVENT FALLS”

Michigan City—I’m not ready

I visited family this weekend and couldn’t help but ask about the use of the bathroom tub. My concern was that it was much too high for my cousin (who had 2 knee replacements) to use without falling. She said she didn’t use it at all and had plans to tear it out to make a shower with a small curb. I asked about grab bars and she said “oh I’m not ready for that”. Gosh I’ve heard this so many times. In my mind I think, “oh you don’t want to preserve your life?” At the age of almost 70 it is necessary to prepare for the possible and thinking of the future which could include use of a walker or wheelchair. She didn’t want to hear that but each day we get older, that’s a fact. After an evaluation I hand wrote my suggestions. This was my duty to inform her of the inexpensive options available, that didn’t have to make the home look like a hospital. She commented on my handwriting as I wrote but not the content immediately. I handed her my suggestions left the room and returned to a more accepting attitude and a nod. If I had my tools with me I would’ve installed most of the items myself. In our aging community (which is everyone) what does it take? How many stories, hospital visits and funerals must we attend before making the simple changes? I’m passionate about falls, and while they aren’t all preventable or foreseeable, it’s a preventive measure for all who visit our homes. I appreciate her hospitality and will check back to see if she acted on my strong suggestions.

Lesson: If you stay ready, you don’t have to get ready. 

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