Housebound

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Every day I sit in my chair looking out of this window
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A prisoner in my own home
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Kept under lock and key
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by processes and procedures
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and being a number, an abstract, not a person


If you follow me elsewhere, you’re probably aware that I am currently housebound. I’ve been this way for six months. The first four months were because I lived in a house with a step so I couldn’t get my electric wheelchair out and I can’t go far without it. I could only leave the house with someone strong enough to get it out and then back in when I was done. Or with someone who can push the manual wheelchair.

I have since moved house. There are no steps. There is instead a really really heavy front door which I can’t open. So once again, I’m stuck unless someone is there to open it when I leave and return. And as I’m not getting all my care hours, this is rare. I can leave with my carers in the morning but I don’t have a reliable way of getting back in until they return at night.

I realise I’m lucky in many ways, I’ve moved, I have a wheelchair and I can get out the flat with help. And the council has assured me they’ll put a door opener on it.  Many are not so lucky. And often, it’s down to ridiculous policies or situations. Such as not enough accessible housing.  Such as you can’t have an electric wheelchair if you can get around your flat without it. Without paying thousands for my chair, I’d be in that situation – you can move around at home but can’t go out because you can’t get anywhere.  Such as not providing care support to help you leave the house.

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