If I had a little a money…

In recent weeks the cost of disability debate seems to be all over the place again. Mainly able bodied folk rudely telling disabled folk what we do & do not need. It is of course offensive and exceptionally annoying to be on the receiving end of this. Debating your reality us never fun. Hence, I thought I’d do a little run down of the day to day expenses that my disabilities incur. I am far from the worst case scenario, so bare that in mind when you’re processing this.

It feels important to make it clear that sick & disabled people are rarely just given the things they require. There is a myth that equipment, money, human support & treatments are just handed out to anyone asking. They absolutely are not. Any help we do receive is procured through humiliating assessments, long waiting lists & much general fuckwittery. At the end of which our requests are often denied. It’s a special kind of torture to lay yourself bare to unfeeling beaurocrats only to be gaslit & told you’re fine. Or, sometimes even more frustrating, It’s accepted that you need help & such help exists, but it is not available to you for ‘reasons’. We are screwed over time & again, left with the option of paying for the thing ourselves or never getting it. When the thing that must be paid for is essential, that’s not really a choice.

So, bearing in mind that many disabled people’s ability to work full time (or at it all) is impacted by their conditions, how do you think your pocket would deal with this.

Travel

I can’t get around much on my own as I can’t walk very far. During Covid public transport has been even less of an option for me. I have to take taxis everywhere. Using last week as an example, this costs:

  • Hospital App – £11.80
  • Visit Bestie – £11.30
  • Vet – £8.60
  • Pick up Bronan’s Prescription- £8.80
  • Post Office – £8.60
  • Work Meeting – £22
  • Weekly Total – £71.10

Pain Relief

Lots of really effective pain relief options are simply not available via the NHS. These are pain management related items I have had to buy.

  • Heat Pads – £5 per 3 pack.
  • Tens Machine – £65
  • Tens Pads – £5 per 10.
  • Long Hot Water Bottle – £20
  • Microwaveable Heat Pouch – £15
  • Dragon Balm – £2.50 a jar.
  • Lidocaine Patches – £60 per 10 pack.
  • Vape – £35
  • Cbd Oil – £15 per 50ml.
  • Freeze Spray – £1
  • Paracetamol – 56p per 12
  • Massage – £70 per 60 mins.
  • Kinesiology Tape – £5.50
  • Yoga Mat – £20
  • Foam Roller – £12

Disability Aids

I believe some local councils will fit disability aids in social housing or if people meet certain criteria. Unfortunately I do not live in social housing nor meet those criteria. Thus, I had had to purchase any device I require.

  • Walking Stick Ferrule – £5
  • Easi Reach – £10.99
  • Easy Open Food Containers – £25
  • Jar Opener – £5.50
  • Easy Veg Chopper – £20
  • Multi Bottle Opener – £5
  • Auto Can Opener – £15
  • Lotion Aplicator – £8
  • Walking Stick Seat – £25
  • Sock/Tights Aid – £8
  • Bra Angel – £17
  • Hook/Zipper Assist – £6
  • Suction Grab Handles – £28
  • Shower Seat – £35
  • Wearable Tens Holder – £20
  • Press on Lights – £10 per 3 pack.

Services

There are jobs that must be done regularly that I am incapable of doing. There is no support for such things, so I must pay people to do them.

  • Grass Cutting – £45
  • Hedge Cutting – £60
  • Weeding & Garden Tidying – £100
  • Wheelie Bin Cleaning – £8
  • Window Cleanimg – £8
  • Bathroom & Kitchen Deep Clean – £175

On top of the costs outlined most disabled people also report spending more on bills. My gas bill tends to be high as I have a greater need & more difficulty keeping warm. My electricity bill soars with the need to charge various essential aids & technology. My food shopping is increased by the need to purchase lots of pre prepared fruit & veg, free from items to accommodate my dodgy stomach, plus the cost of food waste when I am unable to cook/eat. Having everything delivered incurs a cost as does working from home, which both add to my outgoings. In fact, Scope reports that on average disabled people face extra costs of £583 per month. That’s only accounting for necessary day to day living.

Should a disabled person attempt to do anything beyond the basic there will of course also be additional costs. Try going on holiday, trying a new hobby, undertaking to study a new discipline and you will find that there are always extras/different apparatus to enable a disabled person to take part. Almost every aspect life presents a bigger bill.

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The winner takes it all….

I broke out of the house for a couple of hours on Saturday night. I went to a local place for dinner with my BFF. It recently occurred to us that we’ve known each other for 30yrs, which is terrifying, but also completely lovely. 

It was good to be out & even better to put on some cute clothes. However, my stupid brain forgot to tell me to photograph them . I did manage to snap a few selfies including one that both looked pretty & included my new favourite thing.

  
Vest – Primark

Cardi – Monsoon

Brooch – Poesie & Grenadine (Etsy)

That brooch carries a superb sparkly embroidered, Thunderthighs are go. Jewellery does not get better than that.  It’s over, we have a winner. Go home non chubby loving trinkets. 

Mamma Mia….

With Mother’s Day fast approaching I wanted to take a little time to honour the amazing woman who is my Mum. 

With parents usually being our biggest early influences an awesome mother goes a long way in creating an awesome woman. I am lucky enough to have just such motherly figure. From the very beginning she taught me that I had strength, power & choice. Leading by example my Mum raised four children before returning to work & forging a successful career. In doing so she proved  that women need not be just one thing. All choices are valid & none are final. 

My Mum takes control, she speaks her mind & she owns her opinions. Growing up with a woman like this allowed me not to be cowed. The fact that I could always rely on her support & acceptance allowed me to grow into the person I am. She instilled the confidence in me to not only be who I want to be, but to be vocal & unashamed about it. I doubt my Mum would describe herself as a feminist, but she certainly helped forge the radical feminist I have become. 

Basically, my Mum is amazing. She is glamorous, independent, funny, loyal & supportive. Above all, she is always there. I can rely on her to be there for my disasters & triumphs. I know she will always be fighting in my corner. 



I love you, Mum. Thank you. 

If your Mum is also one in a million, don’t forget to spoil her this Mother’s Day. Why not enter Parkdean’s Mother’s Day competition & win a relaxing break for your fabulous Mum.