I recently worked out that since birth, James and Charlie have had between them, 7 single and 5 double pushchairs!
I've come across many a debate within the autism community about whether the extended use of pushchairs is 'right'. This is definitely not a post about justifying our using them.....I'm completely comfortable with that! It is however, a subject which most people seem to have an opinion on, even if they have only just met us at the supermarket checkout! I, on the other hand, really don't have fixed opinions on this other than that 'you do what is right for your children and family at a particular point in time'.
Our time using pushchairs is I think, coming to an end. Partly due to the boys outgrowing their current ones and partly because home education has meant that this is an area that we have already been able to put a lot of work into. They are walking much better, for longer periods and with more independence where it is safe for them to do so. Development does happen but at a much slower pace and as I look back now, I can see them moving through similar stages for walking out and about as a toddler would. It's just taken much, much longer and this is, I suppose, why special needs pushchairs can help.
I will remain eternally grateful for our 12 pushchairs which have enabled us to get out of the house in all manner of permutations, ranging from baby and toddler in double buggy and baby on front in the early days, to one boy walking with mum, another boy being pushed by sister most recently. We will probably keep using our battered special needs 3 wheeler (luckily we managed to buy this really cheaply on ebay as it was very well used) for music festivals for a year or so more but that's about it.
I won't miss trying to get through doorways with this one which was kindly donated to us by the The Elifar Foundation.
These are adapted from 2 single Maclaren Major Buggies and are 38" wide!! Very useful at the time though, at a point where I would have struggled to leave the house in the school holidays without it.
I do however, miss having somewhere to put my shopping!