Offering to help

Today I took Hestia with me out to a NAMI board meeting and to the grocery store. She was fantastic!

At the board meeting, several people were sad I didn’t have Felix with me! He will be going for his first time next week—but to an informal social event where I can leave if he doesn’t do well (it’s pet friendly). The board meeting went really well, and Hestia provided me lots of help during it.

Then we went to the grocery store. I use my wheelchair in the grocery store because walking around the store tends to make my hips sore. So I had Hestia and a hand basket on my lap. It is very awkward to hold two things on my lap while reaching to grab things off shelves and put them in my basket. I know people see me struggling.

Today someone showed the perfect way to help! I was getting 6 salsas for Brad, and they were on a semi-high shelf so I was having to stretch. I had grabbed four of them when a woman came over and said “Can I help you get any more?”. I was so relieved and said sure and told her which to get. It was so nice to have someone not just assume I needed help, but to ask me if I wanted it. If I don’t need help, it can be demoralizing to have someone take over what I’m doing without respecting that I have my own desires and purposes as a person.

I wished that lady were there with me for the rest of the store! I had to get out of my chair to get pasta sauce off the top shelf, and Hestia practically had to be inside the freezer (along with my hand basket!) as I tried to get things out of the freezer section. Have you ever tried to hold open the freezer door with your left foot, hold a dog in your left arm, balance your hand basket on the bottom freezer shelf with your right foot, and grab the waffles with your right arm? It’s nearly impossible! Especially when they are inevitably at the far end of the door so you really have to reach far! (Now that I’m home, Brad tells me you can click the doors to stay propped open if you push them a little past 90°.)

But we made it through the store with our basket of stuff eventually! I love Publix because they always ask me if I want help out to the car (which I always accept!) and are so nice about it.

Felix and Alice stayed home with Brad. Brad was brave and had Felix out on the floor instead of on the couch the whole time! No peeing, yay! He did say that Felix was very interested in a picture of Sabrina (our dog from years ago) we had on the floor up against a wall.

Below is a selfie of Hestia and me in the pasta sauce aisle. I have medium-length wavy brown hair and a pink mask, with a pink sleeveless dress. Hestia is a black and white Japanese Chin looking like she thinks she’s a queen into the camera.

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