Waiting

What am I waiting around this house for? Healing, so I’m waiting to feel better? Time to pass, so that I can know not to expect any further healing to happen in my body? If I’m just waiting for time to pass, why not get something done, get up off this couch, and make things happen?

Because apparently I’m only supposed to do what I feel I “can” do. What does that mean? There are many things we “can” do that perhaps we ought to consider not doing. A nurse asked me last week, “Can you dress yourself?” CAN I? Well sure, if I’m okay running the risk of breaking my neck, or if I have unlimited time so I can rest for thirty seconds roughly every .05 seconds or so.”

So I’m waiting for exactly what again? Until I think I “can” go back to work? Can I? Well sure I can, only my stroll to the office will now take about five times longer and by the time I get there, if it’s not already lunch time, I’ll need to take a 1/2 hour to regroup and catch my breath. Can I write sermons? Sure, I’m writing this blog post. Can I stand and deliver on Sunday? No, but I can sit and deliver. So I’m waiting for what?  

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Home

Came home last evening. Extremely intense experience. Finally got to my place on the couch and was just overwhelmed with emotion. It took me a few minutes to finally say to Christy, “Here I am, back here, after all these days and all this work, and I feel exactly the same as when I left.” That is sobering to say the least. Then had an okay evening and jumped out of bed this morning at 6, (yes, jumped — in a frail, limpy, gimpy, not-really-jumping-but-kind-of-clawing way) made my own breakfast, got myself ready for the day, then went back to sleep for two hours. It’s truly second by second right now, with a lot of very low lows punctuated by small victories that I have to allow myself to celebrate even when they seem stupid.

Often I feel like an invalid – someone who is not valid. I keep having habitual flashes of my life two weeks ago and how far I have fallen. I can do nothing to stem this tide, but I must choose constantly not to dwell there. Wherever we are on the journey is okay at any given time, part of our experience of blessedness and suffering, but we don’t want to get too bogged down, lest we miss whatever is ahead for us along the way. Ever forward, whether into more difficulty, trial, ecstasy, etc. All is grace.

You’re Still Here

Words to a song I wrote when home sick with MS for a few weeks in the late 90’s. A much more “Christian”  song than the next one I wrote about the disease a few years later. Still, some good thoughts perhaps.

YOU’RE STILL HERE
Seems those worship songs of yesterday
Rarely moved my heart or eyes your way
Too busy with things and making plans
Never made the time to care

Now days roll by where it’s all I got
Just to make my coffee and pour a cup
Before I stumble to bed, turn out the light
Pray for strength for what comes next

(chorus)
But times like these when I can’t do much,  that’s when you come around and fill my cup
It’s then I find these simple songs mean somethin’ after all
Cuz you’re still here
My all in all in all in all in all

In those foolish days of health it seems
That I locked you out of all my dreams
My highest regards, deepest respect
Never felt to me like love

So I thank you now that my worst fears have left my mind and joined me here
Where they’re starting to look a little bit like blessings from your hand

(chorus)

(bridge)
And I’ve seen you now like never before and you’re lovely
I’ve seen you now and I want some more, so just show me
Take my arms, and feet, and legs – and lips, and heart, and bones, and everything else

They’re yours anyway

Though you slay me, yet will I trust you
Though you slay me, yet will I trust you
Though you slay me, yet will I trust you
Though you slay me, yet will I trust you

Body image, vulnerability, and shame

Most fun I’ve ever had showering in front of a woman half my age: none. Awkward experience, but Mary Beth was a pro. I got my A in self-care. I was like “Seriously? You’re going to stand here while I shower? So you want the full monty?”

Funny how the body connects to the soul. In better days: Behold me! I am the god of sex, and thunder, and rock and roll!” Today: Please avert your eyes. I am weak and broken. If you must look, look with compassion, but not pity.”

Thankful today for a good woman, where I’ve never had to be ashamed of who I am physically, emotionally, spiritually, or otherwise, even as my vulnerabilities become more glaring.

Going home

Back to going home tomorrow. They were going to discharge me Wednesday morning at 10, without any PT or OT that day. What’s the point of just staying one more night? Christy is picking me up after work tomorrow evening, so tomorrow is my last day of PT/OT and I’m out of here. My feet are still incredibly numb but other areas have improved slightly to moderately (feeling in waist, across groin, bladder, butt, face, hands, arms, etc.).

I have become an intellectual expert at walking. I can tell you much of what it involves and have committed many walking principles to memory to avoid falling. Still, I can walk effectively only with a walker at this point. I know walking, but I no longer know it as I did just two weeks ago.  

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