For some the coming of autumn provides relief from the heat of summer. For others they can feel the coming flare that brought on by the changing seasons. Here in the UK, meteorologically Autumn started last week. Considering we’ve had a really cool and overcast summer, autumn may not feel like a massive change for some. But with falling leaves come some challenges!
Be flare prepared!
Make sure you have everything you might need for a flare, in one place. I know I often feel pretty crappy around the equinoxes (which is really annoying as I normally celebrate them), so I’m making sure I have plenty of medication in, food in the freezer, and everyone knows what to do in case of FLARE-AGEDDON.
With central heating going on and colder winds your skin is likely to become dryer and chapped. My hands are often at risk, and I need them and they are doing the job of my feet as well. I thoroughly recommend Hurraw lip balms. They’re vegan, gluten free, soy free, and do the job without having any petrol chemicals. Hands require some intensive treatment! Weleda Skin food is a bit of a cult beauty product and has been around for over 90 years for a reason!
Layer up right!
I struggle with layers right now, as my temporary manual wheelchair (which I’ve had for the past 5 months…not so temporary) has no clothing guards. Clothes get stuck in the wheels all too easily! But also, taking things on and off all the time, is painful and tiresome! I’m finding it very hard to control my body temperature right now, so I can see this becoming a bit of an issue! Luckily, I have two options in my arsenal.
Fleece lined legging are great for days when it’s cool but not below freezing – ones like these are affordable too! The alternative is more of an investment purchase but works with trousers and can work well into the winter months too. Merino base layers are great! They keep you warm sub zero, but they’ll also keep cool enough for those days when there a little bit of autumn sun. They’re also thin enough to wear under a couple of layers or more and not feel overly bundled up. They aren’t cheap, but should last you many years!
I always find that my kidneys and lower back get cold, with tops riding up or my trousers or leggings not coming up high enough at the back. I often have gel or heat packs on my lower back, so I need to keep it covered. Again there are two types. One made of jersey material, the other a belt style. I’m not sure which is best!
My mother advises me that a lot of people have the belt type in Norway, but I’m not sure how well it will work in a seated position. Ignore the fact its a maternity one, this one is a really good shape for the seated form. This one is the belt design. Its looks comfy but i’m not sure if it will be best for active wheelchair users. I shall have to try both out and let you know!
I love micro fleece hoodies. Warm enough but not bulky. I have my old leather jacket which, with one of these, lasts me until it starts to hit freezing. As this one zips up down the middle it’s easier to get off than try and take off over my head.
I’m struggling with this one. If you’re a wheelchair user and can stand to transfer then long coats are fine. How comfortable that is I’m not sure! I’m looking at possibly cutting out the back in my old coat and see if that works. Jackets, great but they do ride up. If you know of a good solution – (maybe a shorter coat?), let me know. I used to love long coats. But I struggled with getting my stick caught in long sleeves. If you find a coat which works for you but it’s a little long in the sleeve, it’s well worth getting them take up a bit by a professional dressmaker.
This is one thing I’m not needing to worry about too much now I’m a full time wheelie. But when I was walking I really worried about my feet. They get horribly cold and they also get bouts of dyshidrotic eczema – tiny blisters all over my toes. Oh and they swell up. Plus I have insoles for my fallen arches.
So I find myself needing a wide shoe, with enough room for thick socks and any swelling. Zip up boots are often best. I bought my last pair from a local outlet shop. Hopefully my next purchases will be these gorgeous Doc Martens, and a pair of these leather converse to replace the pair as seen in the greeper laces review which were lost after a trip to the beach (where I tried out a beach wheelchair!).
Whatever you choose, make sure that it’s got a good tread on it, and if possible don’t go for something with much of a heel, or that’s pancake flat. A little platform maybe best. If you get a lot of foot pain, I’ve heard good things about the sketchers memory foam boots!
I have a fear of a scarves getting caught in my wheelchair wheels and strangling myself. Yes, I know the image is hilarious. I’m still worried it might happen. So I’ve got a couple of solutions. I’ve knitted one of these gorgeous Hunger Game style cowls so that I can keep warm with out the length of a scarf. If you’re not into knitting or want something cotton instead these infinity scarf might be a better bet.
If you just want your neck covered (considering I currently have tonsillitis I think I might want something that comes up to my jaw line) something like one of these funky reversible fleece lined snoods. The other solution works really well, if like me, you already have an extensive scarf collection. Its a bit of an old fashioned thing, but everyone like a badge or brooch! Not such an easy idea with thick wooly scarf but crochet items and lighter weight scarfs work
Waterproofs or umbrellas
I am yet to find waterproofs that are really my style! In the meantime Bundlebean make these patterned wheelchair covers – in flamingo or elephant or a plain black! If you use a walker or you’d rather have an umbrella then why not give this clamp a try? One of those combined with a clear umbrella I think would be a great solution!