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Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Slumping Badly

Yes, the title is an obvious reference to baseball, a sport I adored growing up. My team as a child was the NY Mets. In the 1960s it was easy to root for the Mets, an expansion team. They stunk but were lovable losers after their inception. But a funny thing happened to the Mets in the late 1960s. Thanks to outstanding pitching they won the World Series in 1969. I was just a little boy at the time, a very sick one too. Back then I was spending most of my time on neurological wards at Columbia University Neurological Institute. Those were hard times, an era when a child was expected to act like an adult and do one thing--get better. That was my job and I was expected to nothing else but focus on recovery. That meant no television or radio and often bed rest. I was supposed to wear a hospital gown and did so--I had no choice. But I did have one thing going for me: great parents that fought tooth and nail for me. Hospital rules, rigid and inflexible, were bent to the breaking point on a regular basis. I was allowed to have the very first transistor radio sold to consumers. This technological marvel fit in the palm of my hand and I was able to listen to each and every Met game. In the Fall of 1969 I was the most popular person in the hospital. I knew the score of the Mets games as they were all played during the work day. I was a folk hero--people from all over came to see me and asked "what was the score?". I was a rock star. Like all stars and great teams success was fleeting. By the mid 1970s the Mets stunk again.

For the last week I feel like the Mets--I am in a deep slump. The setback from last week has really thrown me for a loop. I am essentially miserable. I will not be healed by Christmas as hoped. Ski season is likely lost. My life sucks. I have no sense of normalcy. I do not look forward to waking up. I am just watching life pass me by. I miss my ordinary life filled with work, fun, errands, and aggravations. Yes, I even miss people so I must be in bad shape! I want to drive my car and cannot because I am too weak to get in and out by myself. I want to grocery shop. I want to get up and go, go, go. None of that will happen anytime soon. I have missed the Fall, an entire season and months of activity. I cannot seem to focus in anything else but this loss. I am going buggy laying in bed day in and day out. Yet writing this outrages me. What a wimp! How ungrateful can I be! My family sacrificed for me and I sit her feeling sorry for myself. Worse yet, I know I am lucky, I escaped a nursing home. Institutional life would have killed me.

Knowing I am in a deep slump and doing something about it I am learning are two different things. To continue my baseball analogy I am in the dog days of August and batting under .200. How to end this slump is I hope a matter of time. I need one good day of work to get me going. I can thankfully sit up slightly more--the wound on the right side of my butt is already healed. I do not want to push things though. I am looking at computers and hope to be on line on a regular basis soon. I cannot decide what sort of computer to buy. My latest thought is to forego a desk top Mac and go for the Airbook. Of course I also need to figure out how to pay for this--no small feat given the fact the plumber was at my house most of the day. Let's see a new computer or running hot water? Hot water will win every time.

Well, there is no neat and tidy end to this post. I like to have a clear beginning, middle and end to everything I write. Not today. Just cannot come up with the goods, sorry. See I told you I am slumping, even this post leaves much to be desired. Indeed, it contains the sort of self pity and woe is me attitude I despise. I thought long and hard about hitting the delete button but changed my mind. I hope this will jump start me. I do have much to say. The Ashley Treatment is on my mind as is a way to get bioethicists and disability activists together. I also read a great book by a paralyzed woman with two kids. She wrote eloquently about her experiences and the bigotry she encountered as a mother. This fills a huge gap in the literature on disability and feminist scholarship. All this will wait until tomorrow. My sitting time is now spent. Ugh, I am frustrated in the extreme. I suspect if I could sit all day I could break out and get work done.

10 comments:

Mary said...

I feel like I'm checking up on you but am impotent in any regard to help.

I'm prone to the ailment of being a Fixer and when I cannot - well, it sucks.

Anyways you're not alone. I think about you often and am cheering your cells and blood and nourishment to kick-ass in the healing arena.

Mary

ginger said...

William,
Please get your plumbing taken care of asap and keep your house in tip top shape. Don't think you want to deal with frozen and broken pipes this winter.
Your Dell will hold up.
Take your vitamins too.
When I feel up to it, I might tell you of the 2 dollar Christmas dinner our family felt obliged to attend (even though I felt I should have gotten at least a 50 cent discount for bringing my own chair!)

ginger said...

William,
Please get your plumbing taken care of asap and keep your house in tip top shape. Don't think you want to deal with frozen and broken pipes this winter.
Your Dell will hold up.
Take your vitamins too.
When I feel up to it, I might tell you of the 2 dollar Christmas dinner our family felt obliged to attend (even though I felt I should have gotten at least a 50 cent discount for bringing my own chair!)

ginger said...

William,
Hope you do not mind me asking this. Have you had experience or known anyone who has used a Roho seat cushion please? Someone recommended that I check them out. They are quite expensive.
Thank you

william Peace said...

Ginger, Roho cushions are expensive and only last two years but have enabled me to avoid sores for 30 years. I am dependent upon for better or worse. Roho is also a terrible company and customer service stinks.

ginger said...

William,
Thank you. I've been lucky for too long sitting on bed pillows. As my delicate body is getting older, the strength in my arms is waning. Have been using arms to elevate my lower body to take pressure off my delicate ass.

ginger said...

William,
First physical therapist I had used a hydrotherapy technique in addition to other treatments. Continued this at home till he retired. Crisscross nerves and a few other injuries have made it impossible to continue hydrotherapy at home.
Appreciate your help

emma said...

"Knowing I am in a deep slump and doing something about it I am learning are two different things"

I think this is pretty common:) Don't beat yourself up about it too much. Doing something about it isn't that easy when your are limited in practical terms because of ill health and an uncooperative house and computer.

You've already got through a large part of the healing process, not too much longer now hopefully.

william Peace said...

Emma, You are correct I have come a long way and done much healing. But still being stuck in bed make things hard even with this knowledge. Again, a woe is me attitude. I can assure you I will never ever find myself in such a situation. I have learned a very hard lesson.
Mary, As always thanks for your thoughts and kind words. Would be I a sexist to note women in my experience are well adapted to fixing things and relationships?

Mary said...

Hi, William,
That's not sexist. It's just a fact!

My wife says, when I'm sad or uncertain or blue "But I need to FIX it, I'm a DYKE!" and gives what can best be described as the Cry Of The Frustrated Dyke.

:)