I am going to England soon with my family. I don't normally have problems walking but lately have noticed more weakness in my left leg plus am hugely fatigued. I've requested a wheelchair once we land in England (at the airport) as I'm unsure what kind of state I'll be in... I guess I'm looking for reassurance that this is the right thing to do. Part of me thinks that if its inappropriate to ask for a wheelchair if I don't absolutely need one but the other part of me is afraid what will happen if I try to walk and stand in line without help...
It's not inappropriate to request a wheelchair. The rationale you gave (not that you need to justify it but I understand the need to justify it to yourself) makes sense. That's a long trip, you may not get much or any sleep, you'll be jet lagged, and that's hard enough on someone without MS. The airlines provide wheelchairs for anyone who needs one, and it's not like someone else will go without because you had one. It will make a huge difference with the kind of symptoms you're having, and will make the trip so much less stressful. Is your flight non-stop out of YYC?
I agree with DV. It's completely appropriate (and wise!) for you to have arranged this.
I totally understand the trepidation or uneasiness you may be feeling, at least internally. It's similar to times I don't give up my seat on the tram. I've had to make peace with the occasional dirty look because my age and lack of giant belly don't fit the narrative of people who need those seats. But *I* know I need a seat sometimes!
As DV said, airports, unlike trams, are not going to run out of chairs. They're well prepared. You'll be with family and taking the responsible step of saving your energy for the things that matter, like enjoying the rest of your trip!
I traveled to St Martin last April - Walked three airports on the way there and was totally exhausted and could barely move when I got there. Yes I could do it but was it worth it. That would be a great big fat NO!!!
On the way home I used a wheelchair. And while leaving paradise to come back to Maryland was not fun - I arrived feeling much better. The long flight to England will be exhausting enough why put yourself through that and waste time during your trip recuperating! Also you never know how long the walk will be once you get there.
Get a wheelchair - it doesn't say anything other than - I need some help from time to time and want to enjoy my trip!
ps: Heathrow is one of the busiest airports in the world, the line ups are brutal and the distance from gate to Customs and to baggage claim can be very long. Also, the last time I went through there, at ths time of year, it was unbelievably HOT. I literally needed a change of clothes I was sweating so much. I know you are having more trouble with heat these days. So, even more reason to get the wheelchair, if you're flying into this airport. If you're coming through Gatwick, it's a lot smaller and easier to navigate, but even though there's less walking, you can still encounter really long line ups to clear Customs.
Atlanta is the busiest airport in the world, so Alex was smart to book a chair!
I agree, before I was diagnosed and thought I had a pinched nerve... I was in Dubai traveling back to Montana, with stops in Atlanta and Salt Lake City I resisted when the it was suggest I get a wheel chair, but I gave in and agreed. Best thing I could have done, there would have been no way I would have been able to walk through the Dubai and Atlanta airports, going through customs, immigrations long lines it would have been over whelming.
Get the wheelchair and don't think twice about it, you will thank yourself for it.
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