SA has always been a bit of a minimalist. When we first met, his bedroom contained a bed (the bed that he was apparently conceived in – euggh), a snowboard and an ironing board (no idea what he used that for). I thought he’d just moved in, not been there for 4 years . . . But he went and married a headstrong woman with a nesting instinct and a love of interiors that would shame Kirstie Allsopp. So the minimalism becomes, well, minimal. I like furniture. I like rugs and carpets and furry throws and pointless little tables that serve no purpose other than to be covered in other pointless pretty things.
When we were re-designing the house to make it accessible, the first most important thing to consider was where the telly was going to go. The second thing was how to ensure that SA could help himself to the stuff in the fridge. The third most important thing was the gangways.
There are few things that evoke a look of bliss on SA’s face quite like the smooth, open floors of a shopping centre. It even makes visits back to the Spinal Unit palatable – being able to push freely and easily down corridors and around turns that were designed with wheelchair users in mind. So the place where he wanted to be happiest – home, needed to be accessible. Not in a shopping precinct way but wider, flatter and CLEARER than before. A route all through the house, unhindered with minimal chance of grazing knuckles on doorframes or being catapulted out of the chair by a lip in the doorway or a loitering pair of trainers.
We got wooden floors (I lost the carpet argument) and gangways wide enough to swing a modest sized squirrel. I try, in vain, to keep the house as Living Etc as I can for my own sanity as well as the comfort and ease of SA. Plus you never know when Kirstie Allsopp might visit . . .