In Jo's Blog

People in wheelchairs are acutely conscious of their elbows. Those who push them from one room to another should be too.

Sadly, they aren’t.

So bruises, bumps and scrapes are pretty standard stuff.

“Watch the elbows,” I say automatically as Moy Moy is carried out of the house and into the van to go to college each morning. “EEEK.” I mutter to myself as her stiff legs are folded in to the backseat.

Nobody deliberately lets her get hurt (and I include myself there). And yet it happens. When I bathe her in the morning, I do the inventory. Bruises, bumps and scrapes. There they are, scattered across her lovely, young and vulnerable body. They break my heart every time I see them. “Watch the elbows!”

Moy Moy has this amazing stroller.

Blue jogger stroller in a green garden

We have had it for over twelve years. My sister Moy Moy bought it for her namesake in 2000 and it has transformed our lives. It has allowed us to go anywhere and do anything. It’s sling-back design is perfect for Moy Moy’s needs and its all-terrain wheels are perfect for India’s wretched roads.

But it has one little flaw.

That footrest. While it was specifically designed for Moy Moy’s height, it’s made of some kind of unfriendly metal and its edges are sharp. Time and again, I would help her out of it, only to find later that her leg had scraped across its jagged sides and been hurt.

One day, at last!, I realized there was something I could do about it.

That evening, I set to work:

Woman cutting green foam yoga mat

I had a little plan and, though I am not a crafty type and my projects fall into what my friend Rachel calls the “loving hands at home” category, I believed I could improve on the original stroller design.

And so I did.

Footrest of stroller covered in thick green padding

I took an old yoga mat – lovely, thick green foam (thanks, Angie!) – and cut it to size. Using Super Glue (Oh, Good Lord, guard your hands when using this stuff!), I covered every offending inch and created a cushioned resting place for Moy Moy’s feet.

Same stroller, now with green cushions on the foot rest

We are cleverer than we realize. “Watch the elbows! Watch the ankles!” need not be cries of despair. If we put our minds to it,  armed only with a pair of scissors, some Super Glue and an old yoga mat, we can turn things around.

Moy Moy and her friends deserve no less.

Showing 4 comments
  • Shipra

    What a fluorescent (literally and figuratively) idea, Jo!

  • Jason

    Jo that’s really good to point out, it’s the little things that can make a big difference and going the extra steps to make one’s life more pleasant is heartfelt, it also looks new still so you must be taking great care of it.

  • Priya Sreeram

    tht’s a great idea and such small things can make so much difference ! R.E.S.P.E.C.T

  • Ashish

    Imagine..what love can do…one word to describe it would be compassion…! So what we waiting for?

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