If you are planning a shopping trip (depending on how debilitating your condition is), you can use a wheelchair and put your baby in a baby backpack carrier. The person pushing you can put the baby on their back or you could have the baby in a front-carrier while it is small. If you can walk but cannot push a trolley, many supermarkets will provide a member of staff to wheel the trolley for you. Ask at customer services. If you just have to push a trolley, choose a small shallow one, as they are easier to move and unload. Avoid the ones with wobbly wheels!
Don’t be tempted to use a basket, as by the end of the shop you will be unevenly loaded and straining your pelvis unnecessarily.
If carrying bags, divide up the load equally between your bags to stay as symmetrical as possible. If you are unhappy about using a wheelchair and your partner or friend will do the shopping, you could get them to settle you down in the supermarket’s teashop and whilst they do the shopping, you can enjoy a bit of ‘normality’. This can help to give you a feeling that you are still having some control or input into daily living.
On-line shopping can eliminate the need to visit the shop at all. Many shops and supermarkets offer this excellent service – check their websites. This is particularly useful if you are shopping for your baby – you can choose rather than relying on someone else guessing what you would like.
If you do not have a wheelchair, some shopping centres can provide electric scooters or wheelchairs. Ring ahead to check availability. You can hire, or often borrow free, a Shopmobility vehicle which has space at the front for shopping. The insurance does not cover you to carry children on your lap, so you may need reins or a friend to come along.
Content reviewed and updated in 2016.