Personal Parallel Bars
With the arrival of September I found that I could stand unsupported. Prior to this I could only stand when my legs were 'blocked' or when in the KAFO (Knee Ankle Foot Orthotic) which held my knees rigid. If unsupported my knees could hyper-extend with great pain. Now I found that I could park my wheelchair in front of the kitchen sink, plant my feet on the floor between the chair and the sink cabinet and haul myself up to a standing position. There I'd wobble but stand free of the chair and the cabinet. Fighting to stay upright, the muscles slowly began to respond and tighten. Over a period of a couple months I became steadier. Realizing I could stand unsupported I tried walking at the parallel bars with the single AFO that I had and found I could do so. The second AFO was ordered at that time. Because I could walk at the parallel bars, I asked a friend of mine if he might find some way of building some parallel bars for me. I drew up some plans and e-mailed them off.
Unbelieveable! A short time later he arrives at my home with custom made parallel bars welded together, painted and attached to a carpeted floorboard. A number of friends and aquaintances contributed to the project and I can't thank them enough. Try as I might, they wouldn't accept payment for them.
So, now that I have parallel bars in my dining room, I can stretch out and practice walking on the days I don't have physiotherapy at the hospital. These have been a great help in my rehabilitation. Thanks so much Steve, and the others involved!!