"Mikey was so excited to have that freedom..."
Mikey Carothers’ story is one about a young boy gaining his first moments of independent exploration. Learning all the fun things he can do on his own and all the new places he can go. For Mikey, it’s a whole new world!
Mikey’s story is also an important reminder for all consumers and their loved ones. You have the power of choice! Educate yourself and ask questions. Request a demonstration of all the mainstream options and available choices. Without a lucky conversation, this little boy may not have had these new experiences. We created the ROVI X3 intentionally to be more accessible indoors and in tight space environments. This just happened to be a perfect match for Mikey and his family. For both of us, it was love at first sight.
This is Mikey's Story
- Written by Brittany Carothers (Mikey's Mom)
After a scary second half of my pregnancy filled with genetic testing and procedures, Mikey was born on Oct 26th 2011. We spent 6 days in the NICU with him so he could be tested and observed. Mikey was diagnosed shortly after birth with Schizencephaly, a brain malformation. We didn't know what this would mean for Mikey's future and neither did his Doctors but, we were given the all clear to head home. We didn't start to notice anything unusual with Mikey's development until closer to 6 months old, when we started to notice that he wasn't hitting the "typical" milestones. At a year old, Mikey was diagnosed with Triplegic Cerebral Palsy (which was caused by the Schizencephaly). We started physical, occupational and speech therapy with Mikey to help him developmentally.
At five years old, and after going through years of therapy and purchasing multiple different pieces of adaptive equipment to help Mikey stand and move, we started looking into power mobility. The therapists recommended us to look at a few different options for a power wheelchair online. Our biggest concern was the fact that we live in small house that is not very wheelchair accessible. We noticed that the majority of the pediatric power wheelchairs were pretty wide, and pulled out the measuring tape for the doorways in our home. After bringing it to our therapists attention that the recommended power wheelchairs would be too wide for our home, she basically told us to give up, until we could purchase a larger home. We felt so defeated. We were told that because we wouldn't be able to prove to the insurance company that Mikey could use the wheelchair inside his home everyday, they would not approve the purchase of the power chair and we'd be 100% responsible for the cost. There was no way that we would be able to make that happen financially. We gave up on the hope that we could help Mikey have the freedom with a power wheelchair, at least for a few years until we could purchase a bigger home.
Fast forward a few months to the annual Bike Fair and Pedal in Place event that we love to participate in, held to raise money for kids with special needs to help get them adaptive equipment. My husband struck up a conversation with Kirk, who was there representing Invacare. After telling him our story, he had the perfect recommendation. He knew that the ROVI X3 power wheelchair was not as wide as the standard pediatric power chairs and offered to set up a time to bring his ROVI X3 out to our home to make sure that it would fit in our house, through our doorways and up into the back of my small SUV. Kirk did just that!!! He brought his portable wheelchair ramp and allowed Mikey to drive the ROVI X3 throughout our home, into his bedroom, and into the kitchen to grab a snack all by himself, while I took video to document. Mikey was so excited to have that freedom in his own house! Thanks to Kirk, the process began to get Mikey his power wheelchair. Call it fate, we're not sure, but without Kirk at that fundraising event, we would have never been able to give Mikey the chance at this newfound freedom. We are definitely ROVI supporters, for life!
ROVI® Mobility Products 2017 - Copyright® 2015 All Rights Reserved. ROVI is a registered trademark of SHOPRIDER Mobility Products, Inc. (A subsidiary of Pihsiang Machinery MFG. Co., LTD.)