19 Feb Nikki – Move It Forward Recipient
Move It Forward is an idea that came to us when a temporary M+D Crutch user wanted to pay it forward by donating her M+D Crutches to someone in need.
As the manufacturer and designer of the ergonomic M+D Crutch and Combo Stix, we love the idea of our products having an extended purpose and being useful beyond the initial purchase. So, we helped connect a donor and a recipient, and the idea of “Move It Forward” was born.
We would like to share this story to encourage anyone out there who has M+D products gathering dust, to Move It Forward!
If you would like to Move It Forward by donating a pair of crutches or potentially receive a pair of donated crutches, share your story with us, see the bottom of this blog for more details.
Meet Nikki, our first Move It Forward recipient!
The first recipient of the Move It Forward program is Nikki, a 30-year-old woman who lives with cerebral palsy and used a wheelchair for most of her mobility needs before receiving her M+D Crutches. Nikki currently lives with her boyfriend and service dog, Pepper. Pepper has not always been a service dog, but now assists Nikki emotionally and physically throughout the day.
“We got her from a shelter, I brought her home and we decided to go ahead and train her,” Nikki said.
At a young age, Nikki was diagnosed with cerebral palsy along with other challenges. Cerebral palsy is a neurological condition marked by impaired muscle coordination that causes twitching and spasms.
“As an adult, the cerebral palsy mostly affected my hands. My legs will shake from time to time, but my hands mainly cramp up, like I struggle to write,” Nikki said.
“It’s really hard because I can walk and I want to be able to stay mobile in that way but when you’re unsteady with a cane, it can be really difficult to stay mobile and a wheelchair just isn’t the same.”
Thanks to her mother’s extensive love and attention, Nikki maintained quite a bit of dexterity in her arms and legs at a young age. As her muscles weakened with time, she tried using multiple different mobility aids but decided they were not the right solution for her. “I spent so long trying to hide that I was disabled that I did not use a mobility device until more recently. It’s been a pretty long road for me to come to terms with the fact that yes I am disabled, and I need a little extra help.”
Before receiving the M+D Crutches, Nikki would resort to her wheelchair and sometimes used canes (painfully) to get around.
“If I’m not using a wheelchair, depending on how far I’m going, I would probably use my cane because I really don’t like my balance. As I’ve realized how unsteady I’ve become, I’ve started to use my cane more,” Nikki said.
She gets frustrated as she knows she has the strength to use her legs but needs a little assistance here and there.
“I have kind of almost lost confidence in going out with a cane because it’s not enough balance. That is why I thought of the crutches in the first place because I think it can give me a little bit more stability whereas a cane just can’t do that.”
“By using a mobility device, I’m just evening my playing field. I’m giving myself a chance to succeed.”
Nikki shared her mobility story with us back in July. She informed us that she did not have the resources to purchase a pair of the M+D Crutches, but knew that the ergonomic mobility aid would be a game changer.
At that time, we knew we wanted to help people in a similar situation to Nikki, but had not formalized a program. In November, a short-term user wanted to pay their crutches forward and after formally creating Move It Forward, we were able to gift Nikki a pair!
“The relief I feel now that I have been using them for a bit is insane. I don’t know how to describe the feeling of freedom. I’m free to do the things I want to do and it is amazing. I can walk down the seawall and watch the sunset. I can get some sun and exercise at the same time (and look cool doing it).”
Nikki even went into detail naming each crutch. “Meet Lilo (left) and Stitch (right), my M+D Crutches.”
As a company dedicated to offering pain-free mobility, Nikki’s story pulls our heartstrings. It is the story of someone who battled for so long and has finally felt relief and freedom. And for that, we are grateful!
With the M+D Crutches Nikki is “a boss at walking!”
Interested in donating or receiving donated M+D products?
Please contact us and tell us why you’d like to donate your M+D product or how one of the M+D products could improve your life.