Thursday, April 19, 2012

A Very Simple Thing that Makes a Big Difference

When my children were babies, their diaper bags were permanently attached to my shoulder. I was prepared for almost any occurrence whenever we were out and about. But as my children have gotten older, and because they still need a lot of supplies whenever we leave home, diaper bags just seem way too juvenile. I know that Ronnie, for example, would not like to pull his catheters out of a diaper bag covered in cartoon trains. Nor would Ashley be thrilled with a bag featuring Dora the Explorer.

So my solution has been to move to a backpack.

Teens are often seen carrying backpacks. They fit very nicely on the handles of a wheelchair. They hold a lot of stuff just like diaper bags did, and using one does not mark my children as any more different then they already are.

Backpacks come in cool colors and some even have ‘wet’ compartments for storing wet clothing. Pulling something out of a backpack can be done discretely, and I believe they are so commonplace that people don’t even think twice if they see a teen going into the bathroom, for example, with one.

Of course, some of the places we go (theme parks, for example) do insist on looking into the backpacks, but I think they would do the same thing with a diaper bag. And as long as they don’t pull out Depends or catheters or syringes for the world to see, I don’t mind them looking through the bags.

Backpacks help identify my teens as peers to other teens, and they hold everything that is needed for any trip away from home. It’s an accommodation that we parents don’t often think twice about, but using one over a diaper bag makes a real difference to our older children!

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