Fall Down, Go Boom

It finally happened. The physical therapists at TIRR warned it would. They always said, it’s not a matter of if, but when. When you fall.

I was running late getting off work last night and called the house around 6 p.m. When Robert answered, I asked my customary question, “Is everything okay?” He replied that it wasn’t, that he’d fallen out of the bed when he was sitting up with his legs over the side of the bed. I could tell he was upset. He said he felt frustrated and helpless laying there. I asked him why he didn’t call me right away. He said he called Pete (the care taker) and left a message. He knew I’d be home soon.

I told him that I was leaving right away and when I got out of the garage, I called on my cell phone. I decided to talk on the phone while I was driving home. I sensed that my voice had a calming effect on Robert and we talked about some other stuff. Besides, I told him, if I have a wreck while talking on the phone, it will at least serve the purpose of getting your mind off YOUR problems!

We talked about how I might get him up off the floor. We both remembered what we were told (but never shown) at TIRR, and that was to lay the wheelchair on its back, with the seatback on the floor. And to then scoot Robert somehow toward the chair on his back, with his behind (tush?) right up against the seatbottom (which now is perpendicular to the floor). And then once he’s in position, I get behind him and lift the wheelchair and him to an upright position. Robert expressed doubts that either of us would be strong enough to pull this off.

When I was about 8 blocks from home, Robert told me that Pete had arrived. I told him to stay put and explain to Pete our evil plan. With Pete and me there, we should be able to get Robert up.

So when I got home Robert was laying on the floor in a lounging position. He said he was comfortable. (The floor is carpeted, fortunately!) I went ahead and changed the bed linens while I had the chance. Then between me and Pete, and with Robert directing traffic, we got him into position in the chair. But it was harder than we’d thought to actually lift him up. Pete had to pull up with all his might, Robert held onto my arms and I positioned myself between the wheels and pulled Robert toward me while Pete pushed. Four grunts later, we lay exhausted, like bees after stinging, Robert in his chair, Pete on the floor and me in the bed!

Robert felt much better once he was back upright. We ordered take out, and spent the rest of the evening just relaxing.

All’s well that ends well, I guess. And at least he’s got that behind him. But I do want to work on my strength. Pete may not always be around to help us out and we have to figure out how to do these things between the two of us.


All’s well that ends well, or so I believe Shakespeare said. Still, it must have been frustrating and demoralizing for Roberto. Good thing he has Pete that can come to help you. It appears to be a very difficult thing to accomplish, getting him back in the chair and getting it upright. Gravity is against you and his weight doesn’t help. There may be a trick to it that TIRR may give you if you ask.
Again, thanks for keeping us posted.
My love to you both. Tell Roberto I’m still on the case.