A Subject We Usually Don’t Talk About

Last month I had my right shoulder joint replaced. A serious but a somewhat routine surgery,  except for a complication I faced, I am right handed and additional arthritis prevents me from reaching behind myself with my left arm. Toileting becomes difficult when the only arm I can use is locked in an immobilizer sling tied to my body.UltraSlingII3

I made test trials with various options prior to surgery and was unhappy with the results.  There simply had to be a better, cleaner way. My travels throughout the world proved that there is more than one way to skin a cat….or clean a behind!

Homes and hotels in most countries in Europe, Latin America and Japan have bathrooms equipped with either a bidet, or in Japan, specially equipped toilets and seats.%UseBidetaByCountry

Bidets are hardly used at all in the U.S. while most hotel rooms in Europe had a bidet and commode like this:Bidet and CommodeSome hotel bathrooms even post instructions for use:BidetCorrectUse

My visits to Japan surprised me with the many variations of toilet equipment which allowed cleaning with a water stream and even air drying after a water cleanse, they include electronic controls….. BidetJapanControls

So….I was left with the question; what can I do to retain my dignity and take care of my own toileting? I discussed this problem with an Occupational Therapist. The Occupational Therapist equipped me with two choices, both required I attach toilet paper to a stick to poke between my legs and wipe with a scrubbing motion. Each device held the toilet paper differently but both had a release mechanism to drop the soiled paper into the toilet. The routine was; attach clean paper, scrub, release, attach fresh paper, etc. etc. etc…no better choices were offered.



I was not happy with any of these options. Unfortunately there was not enough room to install an additional bidet unit, or time and money enough to buy and have a plumber install a Japanese Deluxe toilet.

Just what could I do?

After a great deal of searching on the internet I found a number of portable products, most attached to the cold water supply to the toilet tank, all had spray attachments suitable for female hygiene use but not good for use for toileting. Finally I found something  that looked like it would do the job….it is called HydraWand.



I ordered it, installed it in five minutes. It was a portable device that worked as well as any bidet I used in hotels throughout Europe, Japan, Korea and Hong Kong. The faucet attachment allows me to control the water temperature for total comfort. I will use this even after my arm is out of the sling because it is far superior to toilet paper and every bit as good, if not better, than the bidets found outside the United States.

I sure wish we had something like this in the outhouses we used in Vietnam.BidetOuthouseVietNam

Green Hills meals service wants to find more clients


DJ Plate LunchRecent Newspaper Article….

Mobile Meals, another non- profit meals service, has been operating in Green Hills and surrounding neighborhoods for almost four decades. The service supported by several churches has recently begun a push to attract more clients.

“Our numbers are diminishing, we’d like to serve more,” said Judy David. Mobile Meals has no eligibility restrictions. Its. Clients include older residents, those with permanent disabilities and those recuperating from a short-term illness or injury:

“Anyone can call and request their friend or loved one be helped,” Davis said. “We just want to serve the need.” Meals are delivered Monday through Friday: The cost is $2.75 per meal. Each meal includes a meat, two vegetables, fruit or cookie, bread and milk.

The service area roughly extends from West End Avenue to Franklin Road, from the Edgehill neighborhood to Forest Hills. Some of the large complexes served are the Retired Teachers Apartments in Green Hills, Lea Rose in Hillsboro Village and Wedgewood Tower on 12th Avenue South.

Churches assisting include Calvary Methodist, Woodmont Christian, First Baptist, First Presbyterian, Harpeth Presbyterian, Hillsboro Presbyterian, Forest Hills Baptist and Christ Presbyterian. For information, call Judy Davis 615-297- 3049 or e-mail jd-ed@comcast.net