Sunday, November 09, 2008

thank god for roommates

so my desire to live by myself has been increasing exponentially this past year.  not because i don't love my roommates (i do!) or because i don't love my apartment (i do!)... but for some unknown desire that makes no actual logical reason.  i don't ever act on this urge because i know that the second i lived alone bad things would happen... like i'd become a hermit and call meals on wheels and ask if they deliver to people in their twenties.

so at these times i let reality set in and think of all the reasons it is good to have my roommates... (apart from the touchy feely crap and the financial reasons):
-i eat more than my fair share of food
-i use their computers
-i drive their cars
-i wear their clothes when mine are all dirty and i am too lazy to do laundry
-i rely on their shampoo, tooth paste, and contact solution (as i never purchase my own personal hygiene products) 
-i encroach on their social life and usurp their friends because i don't have any of my own
now, please don't think i am a total dead weight.  i do contribute sometimes, albeit in meager ways.  i clean, cook, pay the electric bill, take out the trash, get along with the neighbors.  yeah.  and i also open jars.  Rrrrrrr.  

this weekend i found another reason i need my roommates around.

so in health care we sometimes talk about ADLs, which are Activities of Daily Living.  An inability to perform these renders one dependent on others, resulting in a self-care deficit. These ADLs are measured and used to determine functioning and often have implications relating to disability or elder care benefits.  There are six ADLs:
  1. bathing: receives no assistance or assistance in bathing just one part of the body.
  2. toileting: goes to toilet, uses toilet, arranges clothes, and returns without assistance.  (may use cane/walker for support)
  3. transferring: moves in and out of bed and chair without assistance (may use cane or walker)
  4. continence: controls bowel and bladder by self
  5. dressing: gets clothes and dresses without assistance
  6. feeding: feeds self without assistance
In addition to ADLs to determine dependence, health researchers also look at something called IADLs, which are Instrument Activities of Daily Living.  These are used to render a person's ability to live independently. Above and beyond ADLs, these measurements are often used to determine the need for assisted living or home health workers for the elderly.  
  1. Ability to use telephone
  2. Shopping
  3. Food preparation
  4. Housekeeping
  5. Laundry
  6. Mode of transportation
  7. Responsible of own medications
  8. Ability to handle finances
When considering my ability to live independently, I find it useful to evaluate myself in these IADL measurements.  As it turns out (as I will detail below), I am fairly dependent on my roommates.
  1. telephone- i always let my cell phone die and/or never answer my phone so i rely on them for contact with the outside world.
  2. shopping- i didn't pull my grocery store weight in september
  3. food prep- lily is a better cook than me
  4. housekeeping- betsy loves cleaning the bathtub
  5. laundry- thanks for the black socks lily!
  6. transportation- well, i have a car now, but i spent years and years of taking lily's 
  7. medications- i am a vitamin steeler, mwahaha
  8. finances- i take betsy's quarters from her change jar when i need change for parking meters
so, yeah, these IADL independent living measurements tell me i shouldn't live alone....although, functionally speaking, there is nothing rendering me unable to do these things.  


i need roommates to perform my basic ADLs.

so yesterday, i am trying to take off my sweatshirt.  and i am so sore I start living it over my head and just can't pull it off.  and not in the way you can't pull off your shirt cause your head is stuck in the armhole... but unable to take it off cause i can't move my arms any higher.  weight lifting's a bitch.  

so there i am with my sweatshirt half off, arms half in the air, and i can't raise them anymore.  so i wimper: "lily.... betsy.... help."  and then someone comes by and raises the sweatshirt over my head.  

ADLs. dressing.  definitely not looking for a studio anytime soon....


Brian Peterson said...

Those concentric contractions are a bitch, eh? I recommend just using really heavy weights since just a bar is too hard and that's probably what made you too sore.

twinkiepatissier said...

In case your roomies go out on their respective hot dates and leave you alone at the apartment, you can roll around on floor or your bed, and use the rug/mattress friction to peel off the sweatshirt, or you can hook the shirt on a door knob and squat down. A isolated desperate cry is the mother of invention and creativity. said...

so, so good

Audra Marie Dewitt said...

Oh Beth, you sound just like an Occupational Therapy student with your ADLs/IADLS and whatnot.

I'm moving to a place by myself and I think it will be very exciting. I can air dry post shower without fear of discovery now.