National Mobility Awareness Month Partners:
VMI

Angie Aletha

Livonia, MI

Entry Photo for Angie Aletha - Livonia, MI

My sincere thanks for this opportunity. I am a senior at 63 years of age, with a 33 year old daughter, Molly Rose. She and I have done alright with transfers from her wheelchair to the car, until a couple years ago when she started gaining weight because of a new medication. It has been hard on my back and, this past winter, we had two instances where I was unable to hold the lift long enough for her to get her feet up, which resulted in her throwing herself back into the car with her shoulder in-between the seats. There was snow on the ground. I rolled her to her side and eventually worked her in and up to sitting. The rest of the winter I take off her coat, car warmed up, I get a better grip on her.

In her transfer, I lift her, while she faces me and brings her feet up to the running board on the side of the car, then the weight is lifted off my back and I can get her into her seat. She is severely impaired, due to suffering sudden infant death, in the nursery at the hospital. She is considered hypotonic, loose rather than stiff. She doesn’t speak, yet communicates through emotional responses and verbal sounds. She’s developed seizures the last two years, with intense mood changes. She loves to go out riding in the car. I work full time with brain injured adults and Molly goes to a Lifeskills Center, during the day. Her father and I are divorced and share caregiving. He has a wheelchair accessible van. She is on his insurance. Due to his family situation, we are unable to share the van. I live in a subsidized senior community and I pick up Molly Rose who stays up to 14 days a month with me, and three weeks in the summer and Christmas week. I am unable to afford a van or to finance a good one. Due to difficulty we are having with transfer, we have quit going out for drives, only to get her to her dad’s, praying I can continue to do so. I am so thankful that there are people who care enough to be heroes for people with disabilities. God’s blessings to all who enter.