On the Issue of Public Toilets (still) Being Closed

Rebecca Toal by Rebecca Toal Additional Needs

Rebecca Toal

Rebecca Toal

Blessed, busy mum to four beautiful girls, the youngest with complex special needs due to extreme prematurity. We are always looking for ways to ma...

I don’t know about your family, but since this whole coronavirus pandemic erupted and we were placed on lockdown, we sure have been spending lots of time outdoors! We’re a family of 6 so it can get pretty crowded in the house sometimes.

Plus the girls all being out of school and their normal routine and activities sucks to be honest.

At first we were sticking to our 1 form of exercise daily- just walking or taking the girls out on their bikes from our house. In fact I’ve made it a routine now each day take my youngest daughter out on her adaptive tricycle, she loves it when it’s ‘helmet’ time. We go down the lane  and her sister usually joins us on her bike. It’s nice to have that constant everyday for her.

Since the lockdown rules have now relaxed somewhat, we also like to set out for family drives/adventures a bit further afield. Bringing a picnic is a must. The carparks at parks and forests have re-opened and people are flocking out to enjoy the outdoors and gorgeous sunshine we’ve been basking in!

We drove down the coast this past Sunday for over an hour to a forest park. The car park was the busiest we’d ever seen it. There’s loads of trail options and we have an off-road special needs buggy for Brielle so it’s lovely to get out for a decent trail walk or “hike” (by a stretch of the word) as a family. Really does so much good not only for your physical health but also mental sanity!

Staying at home with a handful of kids is no easy job- as many of you can attest to!

So we arrived at this beautiful destination- hungry for our picnic and most of us needing to use the loo. One problem though is that most public toilets remain closed for health & safety reasons due to COVID-19. That was indeed the case at Glenariff Forest Park.

My husband is very practical and a foreword thinker… Thankfully he’d decided a couple weeks ago that toilet access when out and about was going to be an issue for the foreseeable future. So he ordered this camping toilet “Porta Potti” and the chemicals on Amazon a few weeks ago.

We got to use this toilet for the first time in the privacy of the back of our disability van on Sunday. Works pretty well as the windows are blacked out. At first Brielle was very reluctant but she managed to pee in it eventually!

Who would have thought that in the summer of 2020 little portable potties would be a new family necessity for a day out for a hike or a visit to the beach.


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