>Initial thoughts on the new chair.

>I started writing a longer post about my new chair but for now some brief observations. It’s an action 3 wheelchair (invacare, don’t google it the standard ones look shit) but it has a Jay backrest on it.

I’ve never been this upright in a wheelchair before. It’s really cool. It feels like it stretching my spine out which is probably a good thing. Or at least that’s the best way I can describe it. Also I think it would be physically impossible for me to end up slumped over in this chair.
You know how they say “once you’ve tried…. whatever …. you’ll never go back.” ? This is my first Jay Backrest (specifically the J3 by Jay) and it’s only been a few hours but I’m wondering if that’s going to be the case here.
My therapist was required as part of the prescription to give me a seatbelt, they have to provide them to everyone who they give a chair. The one that came with the chair is the most ridiculous size and she tells me fits no one, she thinks it’s a paediatric one. It’s also velcro which I’m not convinced is particularly safe. The need to go get me a different one that would fit from their store was mentioned. Then the engineer was like “Emma will you wear the seatbelt if we give it to you?” and I was all “no way I think it’s safer that I don’t wear one” (because if the chair goes I get thrown free rather than go with it) so they’ve left me with one fitted that might fit my friend’s all but four year old but certainly isn’t going to be going round me or even around my skinny wheelchair using friends. Still they’ve ticked their box so they are happy!
I find it interesting that given they must provide a seatbelt for safety (even if as in my case the disability doesn’t necessitate it) but that they aren’t required to provide anti-tip stabilisers. They were something else I seriously wouldn’t use (this time from a practicality point of view) but the requirement for one and not the other surprised me. Especially as stabilisers are the one that seem to do more for safety to me.
I got a new wheelchair cushion with this chair. I will however be ringing my therapist for another one to be sent out urgently tomorrow. She forgot what we had discussed and grabbed me a standard foam one (not even memory foam!) from their store and said I might need something better but to try it for a few days and call her. I’m used to just gel for the last year or so although I have used memory foam and also gel/foam combo cushions before – the gel/foam combo was what was discussed at my assessment appt.
Dad and I called into Sainsburys in Oxford on the way home (a long held tradition that isn’t an actual tradition after my rare hospital appts – stemming from the days when we didn’t have a sainsburys here and my parents liked to go there when they could and the fact that today both of us had bare cupboards). We weren’t halfway round before I was like “this chair is really comfy but ooops there’s that numb bum feeling she warned me against getting.”
So to recap: So far I am liking the chair, loving the backrest but hating the cushion. That said it’s ridiculous for me to have this sort of cushion given how long I spend in my chair. I am slightly annoyed with myself that I just accepted the suggestion to try it and see.

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