Being one handed, the most important thing I can recommend in order to survive is, learn to adapt.
It’s the day’s I go to the city and I do some hunter/gathering, that I push myself a little more and while it exhausts me, I notice how my physical body adapts.
My standard trips to the city meant a lot more steps and carrying. If I can’t carry it, I can’t buy it. So, I’ve gotten creative.
Yesterday, I bought two novels and a box of envelopes. Not heavy, just cumbersome and sharp corners. These day’s I travel with one of those fold up grandma bags. (Not a slur) but you can carry it around until you need it. It weighs nothing, takes up no space, but once it’s got two novels and inside it, I usually ask someone to help me put the handles on my left arm above where my cuff and collar sits, just on my elbow. The bag swings along my side and doesn’t hit my left thigh.
My next stop I collected comics, they are flat and not very heavy, so they go in my bag that sits on my right glutinous maximus. Slap, slap, slap.
Then I stopped at a chemist and picked up a few things. Definitely the weightiest purchases of the day. I might even have behind packaging to save or bulk. At this point I’ve reached my maximum density.
I’m starting to feel weighed down and I’m walking a little sideways and bumping into people. Or it could just be people on their devices not paying the least bit of attention to where they are.
After a quick pee break where the bag on my left arm stays there to save needing to put it back on. I walk not far to the tram or Bourke Street Mall and I get on the tram.
Waddling like a pregnant lady now, I try to get two seats near a door facing forward. I might start with one seat and the bag sits on my lap, the straps digging into my shoulders. My right leg in the isle making people brush against me. The bag on my left arm is beside me digging into whoever didn’t think to offer me both seats.
• I’ll just point out here I’m not bigger than Texas. I’m just a wide load by this stage.
Thirty-Five minutes later, I’m at my tram stop (Maybe I was able to spread out for the last 15-20 minutes) I stand up on the tram, readjust my bags, the strap on my left shoulder. I carry my walking stick with the wrist strap between my teeth, so it doesn’t bang all over every piece of metal known to man.
Have I mentioned, I can’t do stalker or stealth? I manoeuvre my way to a door, favouring my right side as that’s my better peripheral vision. All the better not to step on or bump into people and while holding on to one handle or another I manage to get to the right-hand door handle. Walking stick still in mouth.
Tram stops, door opens and I swing my left leg out and bending my right knee, step down. I don’t let go until both feet are on the ground. Hoping just hoping people have followed the road rules and cars have actually stopped at the back of the tram. Yeah! That does not always happen.
I then use my walking stick to walk to the curb. Right foot up, lift and swing left leg attempting left toes to clear the curb.
Fast forward to me getting inside my apartment. There have been days I’ve taken off the bags and weighed them and I’m surprised I’ve carried the extra five kilos home from the city.
But the biggest surprise to me is after I’ve unpacked everything and take my extra layers off (jacket, scarf, etc) I’m moving around my home feeling like I’m on a permanent tilt.
So, by gradually adding weight, my body compensates to do what I insist on it and when all of that is gone, my body still acts like it’s needing to adapt to carry the extra weight and that is today’s lesson.
You don’t know what you can do until you try. Do a little more on top of that and a migraine.