Sunday, June 13, 2010

writer's block

I want to write about something tonight but I can't think of anything to write.  When I taught 6th grade we had a thing called "quick write."  The  idea was to get kids to put ideas on paper quickly without the resistance of, "is this right? is this what the teacher wants?" etc.   So, I would read a passage and say, "quick write."  They had pen and paper prepared and would write a response to whaterver I had requested. 

Often kids would stare into the "never never land" and I would say, " you have to write, even if you don't have anything to write about.  If you can't think of anything, then just write, 'I can't think of anything to write, but my teacher is making me write.'" 

It usually worked and some amazing things came out of their, "can't think of anything" position.  That's where I am tonight. 

I want to share about us, but I can't think of anything that might be the least bit interesting to anyone. 

So, I'll just write. 

We went to church today.  Getting there is a process.  I am so aware that my health is critical to our existance.  We have a rather comfortable life, but it is entirely dependent upon my ability to lift and push and change and carry and drive and comfort and care.  Actually, I enjoy care giving.  I just get tired.  So very, very tired. 

Church was good.  Pastor is leaving.  That is the way with the Methodist church.  Some remarkable people at that church, like the survivor of the Baton march in WWII, or the Rotary leader who is silent but amazing.  

So, prior to church, we wake and decide to go to the backyard and have our coffee.  Sounds simple.  It's not simple.  First we must make sure that we secure Jed to the chair, as last time we went to the back yard he ended up prone, off the chair and on the ramp. 

It is surprising how heavy a man is.  I couldn't lift him and called our grandson for help.  Soon Jed was back on his chair and all was okay.  Now I know to always tie him to his chair when we go down the ramp to the shower or to watch the birds.  Going to the back yard for some R and R takes great preparation.  

The shower is outside and lovely, but the making it happen is a chore.  Transfer to the bed.  Disrobe.  Transfer to the shower chair.  Protect the legs and feet during travel to the shower. 

It's a thing called proprioception.  I had never heard of it before the accident.  It's knowing where your limbs are at any given time.  Think about it.  If you close your eyes, you know where your feet are or hands or ears for that matter. 

Jed has no proprioception.  He has no idea where anything is.  He has to see it and even then he is unsure.  So, even though he is gaining some movement, he doesn't know what is moving and where it is going. 

Must be a terrible delima for him. 

So, thinking on a less personal scale, but using the proprioception analogy.  Do we really know where anything is?   Has Jed's accident just made us all a little more aware of the tenacity of unknowing? 

It is very painful to watch this amazing man who could do anything, not be able to even lift his arm or know where his arm ( or leg) is.  But, it is beautiful to watch how he has adapted.  No one hates this more than him, but he is flexible, positive, and beautiful is his adaptation to his new life. 

Who knows.  Maybe one day he will walk.  Or not.  It doesn't matter.  What matters is the depth of knowing and the depth of love.  He is a remarkable man and I am blessed to have had 22 years with him. 

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