“Not all spinal cord injuries are created equal! This is also for the newbie injured folks that want some tips and insight of how to function in daily living. Everyone does things differently this is just my way.”
Two people can have the same medical diagnosis of the location and severity of their injury, but still have very different outcomes. There are so many factors to consider in a human body, and although there are general expectations of what happens when you damage certain areas, there are not guarantees it will turn out that way. Colbie gets lots of questions about the basics of her life, so she lays out some important facts about her situation.
Managing bowel and bladder routines
Colby is a C5-6 quadriplegic, who uses a suprapubic catheter to manage her bladder, which she explains in simple terms. “My urologist poked a hole in my bladder just below my belly button that the catheter goes into,” she explains. “I change my catheter monthly or anytime I have symptoms of a urinary tract infection.” Her catheter then attaches to a leg bag, which she has someone empty when it’s full. As for bowel management, she has a routine every other day where she has assistance to use a suppository over a shower commode. What about using the restroom in public? “I bring disposable cups with me wherever I go, so if my bag gets full and I’m not near a bathroom it gets emptied in the grass,” she shares.
Managing daily life in a wheelchair
“I have a powerchair that allows me to chase my kids around the house,” Colby shares. She also keeps a manual chair that she uses when she goes out. She cannot transfer independently, so she has assisted transfers, but will need a Hoyer lift in the future. She also has help to get dressed. Managing technology wise, she prefers Apple mobile devices. She uses her knuckles to type on the touch screens and if she does use a desktop, “I use my hand brace and type with a pen.”
She shares these details to help others in similar situations, so share with someone who can benefit! And don't miss what she shares about being a quadriplegic mom.