For 30 years the man has been immobilized with multiple sclerosis and every day he comes up with new ways to be independent.
He is 64 years old, eight of which he lives in a nursing home. His room is four walls and one window. This is now the universe of Anatoly Dubovets. The universe has the size of a room. But it used to be different.
One day, on the way to Anatoly’s garage, it seemed as though the kneecap had disappeared. The foot slapped weakly. After a while he hardly moved and walked with his cane. Anatoly worked as a driver. The condition was deteriorating so slowly that he did not notice the changes. Until he nearly crushed a man. Then he quit his job, began to walk leaning on the wall, and then completely laid up. At the moment he can only move his head and neck.
In a nursing home, Anatoly tries not to ask others for help. For that reason, he equipped his room with different devices. He came up with many of them on his own. Thus, he set up a button to call the boarding house workers, and a bell in the corridor. The button is on the pillow and consists of two wooden bars, coiled with electrical tape.
Every three hours he has to change his position, so that there wouldn’t be bedsores. Only at night he stays in the same position for 6 hours in a row. In the morning at six o’clock he calls the nurses to be put at the table. He puts his head on the pillow, which is called “dumka” (in Russian it means “thinker”, or “little thought”), and sleeps further.
He can’t comb his hair, so it’s cut short. But he shaves: they put a piece of foam rubber with a glued electric shaver in front of him, and he runs his cheeks and chin, glancing in the mirror every so often.
The sticks, which he holds his teeth, serve Anatoly as hands. One is for the mobile phone and remotes, another is for the monitor, the third is for dragging objects, pulling the computer chain to the table. They are made of radio components and improvised components. For example, the stick for the monitor consists of two electrodes, an ebonite tip and plastic tubes. The ebonite tip has been half erased. There used to be rubbers instead of the plastic tube, but they quickly gnawed.