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Life After Paralysis is a blog that represents a variety of paralysis community members. It is a place for open conversation about the issues and the interests of people living with paralysis, their family, friends, caregivers, and the professionals that serve them.
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I got to do something I haven’t done since before I got hurt 18 years ago on my recent trip to Rochester, MN for a family reunion and my annual trip to the Mayo Clinic, I got to go in a HOT TUB. Yes, a hot tub!! I packed my swim suit for the first time because we were going to have some down time between the reunion and clinic so I figured with the help of my dad and family members we could probably get me in and out of the pool. Except, I didn’t need their help. The Comfort Inn we have been staying at for the last 5-7 years installed a pool lift, not only did they install a pool lift they also installed a hot tub lift as well. How cool is that?
I was so excited and couldn’t wait to test out the water. Since I was coming down with a cold I decided to get in the hot tub. There were a few people already in it, but they said I could join and would keep me safe if I fell in. I got on the lift from my shower chair with some help from my dad. He controlled the lift and I was shocked at how fast it moved. I kind of wanted to just swing around on that for a while like a fair ride, but the water was calling my name. It took a couple of tries to get me in the perfect spot. I decided to stay ON the lift in the water just so I didn’t float away. My legs floated to the top like a fishing bobber, I’m not sure if my top half would and wasn’t going to risk it since dad was in his clothes and the people in the hot tub would eventually leave.
I have to tell you if felt amazing!! The warm water, the bubbles, and just floating in the water was pure bliss. It’s also been 18 years since I have just soaked in a bathtub and I forgot how relaxing a bath feels. I’ve always loved water so I didn’t really want to get out, but now that I know the lifts are there and we stay there every time I go to Rochester I can soak whenever I want.
I posted the news of the lifts on Facebook and Twitter and it got an overwhelming response from my wheeler friends and my abled bodied friends as well. Then people started to tell me of other hotels that have pool and hot tub lifts, some even in Sioux Falls. Most don’t have both, but hey, I think it is wonderful that times are changing and facilities are adapting to everyone’s needs. To be honest with you the Comfort Inn we stay at is far from new, so they would have been one of the last places I thought I would see a lift in, but glad it is there. Rochester being a medical town I see the need for their hotels to install such devices as they get people from all over the world visiting their city.
I’m looking forward to packing my swimsuit for hotel trips (never thought I would say those words) and booking hotels that have that option. I wonder if that would be listed on the amenities. If it isn’t, I think that is something they should add to the list. I’m just grateful that hotels are beginning to adapt to all abilities.
Have you visited any hotels with pool or hot tub lifts? If so, did you use it?
© 2013 Kristina Allen