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Sunday, December 4, 2011

Dressing - It Can Be A Workout Too

Another question I get asked A LOT is,"How do you get dressed?"  Things that you take for granted or are just simple tasks for you can definitely be a chore for me sometimes.  Dressing myself is often one of those things that I really wish I just didn't have to do!  Being a nudist would just be so much easier!  Honestly, if it was acceptable, I'd be naked all the time, mainly to save myself the frustration of getting those darn clothes on!!
It did take me a long time to master the task of dressing.  Thank God for creative thinking therapists and ingenuity! Thank God for parents who MADE me do it instead of just doing it for me.  Sometimes I still have to be creative when figuring out how to do things.  It's a good thing I was blessed with the ability to think outside the box!
For starters, flexibility is a key factor.  If I didn't keep myself flexible and "bendy," I wouldn't be able to do half of the things I'm able to do.  I do sit in the floor for much of my dressing.  I have to say, not having those pesky arms in the way makes some things easier. For instance....bras!  I hook the bra before I put it on and just put it on over my head, pull it down where it needs to be, and DONE!  I tend to wear strapless bras most of the time because I don't have much of a nub on my left side to keep the strap up.  If I'm not wearing a strapless bra, I'm wearing a sports bra, which is about 99% of the time these days.  I'm becoming more and more anti-bra all the time. Sports bras are just more comfy:)  Another example of something that's easier without those things called arms in the way is shirts/dresses with zippers or buttons in the back.  I can slip them over my head (on backwards) zip it up or button it or whatever and just turn it back around. You can't do that with arms! lol
Speaking of buttons, I usually button as many as I can before I put things on. Then, once it's on I use my toes and my mouth to button the rest. It is a pain is the ass, which is why I usually buy clothes without buttons.  The older I get, the more I look for clothes that are easier to put on! 
I used to wear jeans ALL the time. Now, I only wear them once in a while. Those things are a real pain!  At least now, many jeans are stretchy, and that definitely does help.  I do have some special tools I use, mainly for bottoms.  I have "dressing stick," which is a long metal stick with a hook on one end (to hook onto pants/shorts/panties, etc) and a soft coated mouthpiece on the other end. So, I hook the clothing on the hook, and use my mouth to pull up.  I also have a suction cup that sticks to smooth surfaces, and it has a knobby thing on the end. I've been using this way more lately than my dressing stick.  This thing came about because when I was little, I would use my dresser drawer knobs. I can hook my clothes on there, and move my body up or down to get the clothes where I need them. I broke so many drawer knobs, that someone finally came up with this for me. I always have one of these in my purse too so I can take myself to the restroom when I'm not at home. Public restrooms can be a real pain too.....I will NOT sit on the floor, and I don't want my tools touching the floor. So, I have to be creative.  Honestly, if I have a good friend or my mother with me, they will usually just help me get my pants up and down.  It's a heck of a lot quicker too.  I am also very thankful for family restrooms.  There have been many times that I've had on difficult clothing, and I need my husband to go in and help me. Otherwise, I could be in there forever just fussing with my clothes. Getting some things, like leggings, on is a total body workout!! haha
OK, back to jeans..... I also have a smaller and much skinnier "dressing stick" that fits into the hole in the end of a zipper. I call it a "zipper pull." The little hook fits into the zipper hole, and I use my mouth to pull it up.  I also have a "button holer," which is a wire hanger that is bent up all funky.  I use my right foot for this. i hold onto one end of it, and the other end I put through the button hole, hook the button, and pull it back through the hole. Sometimes, this is tricky. Sometimes, I get it stuck.  I have actually had to call a neighbor friend before to come get me unstuck from this thing!!  I tell ya, if I didn't have a good sense of humor about myself, I'd probably be in the nut house by now. haha  Belts...ah those pain in the ass things.  I rarely wear them any more. When I do though, I put the belt on first, and use my long dressing stick to fasten it once everything else is on. Since I'm usually in gym clothes or something simple to get on these days, my life is a little easier. When I wear more difficult things, I feel like I'm getting a workout, and I'm a sweaty mess by the time I'm done!
Oh yes, I almost forgot...because i almost never do this anymore, but tucking in shirts....this one actually isn't too hard.  If I'm going to tuck in a shirt, the only way I've found to do it is to use my dressing stick to tuck it into my underwear. I know, it sounds silly, but it works.
The older I get, the more I'm concerned with ease. Ya, jeans are cool, but they are a real pain in the butt. So, I stick to wearing easier things.  Dresses are something else I don't wear a lot. If I wear a dress, I have to wear shorts underneath so I don't give the world a peep show every time I put my leg up to do something. Trying to hold up a dress to get shorts up and down to use the potty...not easy. Therefore, dress wearing is limited. I'm just too impatient to worry about all these things that are a hassle any more!
I guess what goes on my feet is a part of dressing too. So, I'll address that too for you:) I love boots, but the ONLY time I wear them is if I'm going somewhere like dancing, my husband or someone is with me to do EVERYTHING for me, and I won't need to use my feet.  The same goes for any type of shoes that require buckling buckles. As you can imagine, I just don't wear these types of shoes or boots often. It's rare actually. I usually just wear sandals or flip flops. They are easy:)  My sneakers are the only thing I wear that have closures. I have to take my sneakers/gym shoes to a shoe repair place and have them put velcro straps on them. Again, not exactly cool, but it works. So, I use my right foot to velcro shut the left shoe, and my mouth to close the right shoe. I only wear these when I'm at the gym or doing anything workout related.
Coats and jackets are another thing I don't like. That's one of the main reasons I will only live where it's warm. Here in Arizona, the most I ever need is a sweatshirt, and those I can just put on over my head.
I hope this answered the whole dressing question.  I'm sure it's hard to visualize how I do this, but at least you get the idea now. Keep your questions coming, and I'll do my best to answer them! As you can tell, I am a very open book, and I totally don't mind satisfying your curiosity!! 

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