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I can tie shoes! Well, not all by myself. But with the help of my mom. Or maybe I should say that I’m the one who helps. Because, without me, my mom would have difficulty tying her shoes!

Have you ever tried doing things while using just one hand? My mom uses her left hand to do almost everything. There are a few things she can do with her right hand. But mostly, she just uses her left. Which means she does the majority of things with just one hand.

My mom used to be right-handed. But now she is a leftie! Back when she lost the use of her right arm and hand she had to relearn how to do everything left-handed.

Over the past couple of years, my mom has lost quite a bit of strength in her left arm and hand. And in her already weak right hand. So she has had to make some new adjustments.

This loss of strength, along with some loss of coordination, has made many tasks more difficult for my mom. But she hasn’t let these new challenges slow her down too much. 

The wooden shoe we used to learn how to tie the laces!

As always, she is finding creative ways to continue doing the things she most enjoys. My mom loves the challenges of finding new and different ways to do things. Especially when she can come up with ways for me to be of help to her!

Long ago, she learned how to tie her shoes with one hand. But this was not so easy anymore. With less strength, loss of some coordination, and occasional cramping she was needing more help than ever before.

My mom started wondering if I could help with tying her shoes. And of course, I was up for the challenge! Since I’m always ready to learn something new! 

This would be easy. Right? Well, maybe not so much. With the added loss of strength, came the challenge of bending over. And easily reaching her shoes. 

Even though her feet are on the foot pedals of her wheelchair, it would be difficult for her to stay bent over for long periods of time. And we would need plenty of time while we were learning the mechanics of tying shoes!

So my mom did some brainstorming and searching for something that might make it easier for us to learn how to work together as a team. In her search, she found a wooden shoe that was designed to help kids with learning how to tie their shoes. 

My favorite part is when we both pull the laces to make the bow!

And she came up with an idea! What if I laid on the bed so I would be close to my mom. Which meant no bending for her. And easier for me to learn just what she needed me to do.

We could figure out how I needed to hold the laces with my mouth. And my mom could figure out how to do her part. This way we would know what to do when we moved on to my mom’s real shoes. 

I hold the lace while my mom makes the loop for the bow!

And by this time, we would have mastered the tying so we would be quick and efficient. Which would mean less time for my mom to be leaning forward in her chair. 

Once we get my mom’s shoes tied, she puts her arm on the armrest of her chair. This way, she can push herself back up so she is sitting straight again.

But even with that, she occasionally still has some trouble getting herself upright. So what can she do? You guessed it! She is teaching me to push her body up. Because sometimes, she just doesn’t have enough strength to do it by herself.

My mom and I have enjoyed the learning process of tying shoes. And learning the best ways to help each other be successful. I think we make a great team!

My mom and I wanted you to see how we tie her shoes. So we made a video for you! It shows how we first practiced the tying with the wooden shoe on the bed. And then how we get the shoe tied when it is on my mom’s foot.