Wednesday, May 19, 2010

many things! many things!

This is a long post. Sorry. Pull up a chair and a nightcap (or a cup o'joe, depending on what time you are readling), or maybe just scroll down and look at the photos...hahaha.

Oooo so many things. Where to start, where to start?!!

I know. First up. How about an installment of The Convalescent Cast of Characters ?

Please send your loving vibes out to Harry & Ann.
Today is their 59th wedding anniversary!

Ann is a resident at the facility where James lives. She arrived sometime last fall after being in the "hospital-hospital", and I think this was just supposed to be a temporary stay here for rehab and extended care before going home. It's been months though, and she is still here. I have a hunch she has become a permanent resident here, but I never pry, and us volunteers aren't privy to details like that.

Ann was very witty and sparkling when I first met her. She's beginning to fade a bit. Sometimes when I ask her something, she gives an unrelated answer. Harry gets a protective nervous look when she does that, but he doesn't jump in to save her. He gives Ann and I the space to sort it out first.

Harry comes to visit her every day after lunch and he is the sweetest guy ever. We usually share an extended handshake, and I ask him how he is, and I can tell that he sort of has to force a smile when he answers me. He usually says that he, "can't complain," or sometimes, "things could be worse." When he tells me how he is, my mind fills up with images of him being home all alone in his empty house without her, and I just feel for him so much. I think they both miss each other terribly.

But yesterday when I saw them and they told me that today was going to be their 59th wedding anniversary, the both got really cute about it, and then I asked them to tell me how they met, and they both talked for a good long while and giggled a lot, almost like newlyweds.
Dolls. Living dolls. Send them the love, please :-)

Second. A section I shall call I LOVE YOU, MAN!!

Thanks so much to all of you who have commented over the last few days and made me feel supported. Double thanks for cracking me up, too. I also really appreciate your telling me to get my ass to the Zen Center. I've been a bit hesitant to bring up the zen-thang here on the blog too often, because every time I read it back to myself I worry that I sound like a bit of a FrootLoop.

As it stands, there is an extended Three-Day Retreat at the zen center this weekend, and I'm signed up for to be present for the whole damn thing.


Third. Yesterday. In bullets.

* I showed up at the State Department forty minutes before they opened and was second in line. They have allowed me until the end of the month to get the paperwork together, and so I was able to leave then and hightail it over to Physical Therapy.
The bonus of going down in person? (if there could in fact be a bonus) While I was waiting in line I met an ANGEL. For real. She may even have had wings. It was a lady who works for the county as an advocate for patient rights. She was there representing another amputee and had some very useful handouts for me that might help me out. She gave me her card and said if I called her, she'd totally make sure I have everything I need, and would even come back with me to represent me. The county pays her to help. How lucky was that.

* I went to PT and wow, is she amazing. I should let you know that I worked with her when I took a stab at this walking thing a few years ago. I didn't know this then, but it turns out that both our kids go to the same school (in fact I didn't even live in this area yet), so I see her from time to time at school events. It was on Back To School day this year that she mentioned to me that there have been some advances made in the last couple of years with sockets that may make things easier for me. It's because of her encouragement that I am giving this a whirl again.
Anyhow, back to yesterday. As I walked (well, waddled) he was able to see what I needed to tweak, and she talked me through making changes rapidly. She was able to see what the prosthetist might want to try tweaking to the mechanical parts, and that information will help me when I go back to see him. I was there for an hour and it was a workout, but even in just that short time my gait improved (or at least my understanding of it--I do need to gain some strength and stamina, though). I still look like I'm walking like a toddler (or a duck), but I'm walkin'.

* I visited both convalescent hospitals, including the one where I host the Knitting Group. We are having a really good time, but there are changes happening there, and I'm overdue writing about it. Soon.

* In between convalescent hospitals, someone parked so close to my car that I couldn't get in it. Like REALLY close. I had pulled straight on into my spot, facing forward. He had backed in to his spot, so that our driver's side doors were next to each other, and he was so close (there was only about 6" of space) that I couldn't open my door wide enough to get in my car. I went into the hospital with his license plate number and for 10 minutes the lady at the desk balked at making an announcement over the loud speaker. I had to get a manager to do it. Even with the announcement, the driver didn't respond for another 15 minutes, and I was late for the Knitting Ladies. When the guy finally came out to move his car, he had to get into his own passenger side and climb over into his drivers seat. In other words, he admittedly knew he had parked so close to me that he couldn't open his own door to get out, but didn't care that the person in the neighboring car (ie ME) would have the same problem.
I had a bit of a flip out. I didn't scream, but I was certifiably pissed. I told him he was rude and inconsiderate, and I think I might have thrown selfish in there. And then I told him I had left a love note on his car seat.
See, he had left his driver's side window down, and while I was stuck waiting, I had squeezed into those 6" and left a note on his seat that had "ASSHOLE" scribbled on it. You'll love this one. I couldn't find paper, and so it was scribbled on a Interweave Knits subscription postcard.
So this basically makes ME the asshole. I know that.
*bigger sigh*
Thought I'd cop to it here, as I will probably never see the guy again (and if I do, I get to apologize--whee). Plus I thought it would entertain you to know that I can be such a twit.
What trips me out the most about this whole thing is this: HOW is it that I can go from being in a completely big hearted loving space (like, I'm a volunteer at a convalescent hospital and I was just talking to Harry & Ann the lovebirds), to being in a totally flipping out rage, and then going back to more volunteer work. In rapid-fire extremism. It's a wee bit insane (possibly a grand bit insane). I want to investigate.

* I called the prosthetist's office after PT and he topld me to come in. He squeezed me in after hours (See? He's great, too.) He put in shim in between the outer and inner wall of the socket.

This makes the socket a tighter fit without him having to redesign the wheel yet, which we both know is soon to come, but the idea is work with what you have until it aint workin' no more. That foam he put in there is 1/2" thick, and 1/2" reduction took place in 7 days, without my even wearing as consistently as we'd all like to me to be wearing it (but I can't wear it when it's falling off, either). For the record, my weight has stayed the same....and for the O&P who sent me that email a few weeks ago, my cellulite hasn't changed either thank you very much...neener-neener.
(see how I get?!)

* I didnt get home from all of this until about 7pm or so, and I caved in to MyFavoriteKid's request for take-out burgers.

* I went to sleep quite early for a change...practically passed out from exhaustion. I think the PT rocked me more than I rocked it.


Next up, A Big Shout Out To My Mom.

She phoned me in between the visits at the hospitals. Right after I flipped out on the BadMannersParkingGuy. Talk about timing. She called to ask me if I wanted Matzoh Ball Soup.

Are you kidding? Of course I do!
get a load of the steaming goodness :-)

She made it for my dad because he is sick, but I have a hunch she did a double batch after reading my last couple of posts.
I love you, mommy :-)

As previously mentioned, I did cave in to the burger dinner, we didn't eat the soup yesterday. But since MyFK had a minimum day today, we saved the soup and just warmed it for lunch. It's overcast and drizzly outside today. Perfect soup weather.


Okay. This post is long enough, and it STILL does not contain the Ravelry Meet-Up photos.


The Bon said...

Ugh. What a jerk the other driver was. He knew that there was no way someone could get in either driver's side door and he didn't make any effort to fix it, although he easily could have. I hate when cars too big to fit in compact car spaces do that especially, because they're being double the jerk.

Glad to hear things are moving along with the leg. *mwah!*

Mouse said...

I second everything that The Bon said plus-- Do you have handicapped sticker/plate/tag on your car? If so or if you were parked in a handicapped spot that makes him an even bigger a*****. I bet with the nasty note on the IK subscription card he'll be a little nicer to knitters from now on, eh?? hee hee.

MsAmpuTeeHee said...

We were both parked in regular, but very narrow, spots (the handicapped spots were already in use). He was in a huge diesel cargo van, though. NOBODY would have been able to get in between those two cars (even an able-bodied super model LOL). I wish I had take a photo of how much room he left, but I was in a bit of a rage LOL.

I do have a handicap placard, but I didn't have it hanging up because I wasn't parked in a handicap spot. I know there are stickers out there like, "keep back 5 feet, wheelchair user," etc...and no, I do not have them on my car. Part of that is because I just don't put stickers on my car. The other part (and this is admittedly very vain), I don't like advertising that I am disabled. When I am sitting in my car it is about the only time I feel like a "normal" person, and nobody looks at me funny because I am missing a part.
Strange mental hang-up, I know....and giving it up might be price of feeling guilty after rheeming somebody with knitting postcards..hahaha.
I have a hunch he'd have parked that way sticker or not, though. He really was not thinking about anyone else by parking that way.

Anonymous said...

Doesn't matter whether you had your disabled placard up or not, that guy WAS an asshole and you acted appropriately.

Love, KarenTDL

Gwen said...

Loving and openhearted to rage and back in minutes? Oh, the humanity! (oh, how I love parking in the hospital lot. everybody's in a crappy mood and the spaces are tiny! I miss my little teeny tiny dinged up Corolla sometimes)

Kid knew you were weak. You had no choice. Smart kid, keeping an eye on his mother.

Kathy said...

I love your blog. Sorry that asshole parked so close to your car! What a pig. Sigh.

Lorena said...

That dude was an asshole, and I hope that one day he has to make amends for that.

I would have behaved just the same way as you. Because... OK, here's my opinion (like you asked, but hey)-- people who give and give and give of themselves, we walk a fine line of giving enough and giving too much. Some days we don't realize that we've given so much that we don't have any left for our selves. We have drained our emotional well but we're so used to giving to others that we don't usually feel it. Sometimes our well is refilled by others; they do something kind when they don't have to, they hold the door open or pay for your coffee or *whatever*; our hearts are refilled by their kindness. But on those same days when we're feeling low, someone who is not kind, someone who just doesn't take the extra two seconds to not be an asshole, that can push us over the edge. We give and give and give and we're still polite at our lowest; would it kill this douche to maybe take two seconds to think of someone else?! And we blow up. But then we go back to being generous. Sometimes we're generous enough to leave a note. ;-)

OK, I've rambled enough. Now I have to get back to catching up on my blog reading!

Lorena said...

PS. Happy anniversary to Harry and Ann!

AllyB said...

Harry and Ann are lovely. You made a tear in my eye talking about them. I can relate to the nice to bitch to nice thing...I do it at work every day. I would have done the same thing with the asshole note too. People can be so ignorant. Sounds like the PT thing is gonna be good, work hard and you won't have to work so long...xxxooo

JennaKate said...

Wow, I just ditto everything Lorena said. So very wise.

I'm glad you're headed to the Zen center. Whatever gives our life rhythm and meaning is not frootloopy. Its what keeps us a functioning member of society. Enjoy the weekend! Be well!

Kym said...

I just found your blog! Thanks for sharing these pieces of your life. (And bravo to you -- for your dealings with the Asshole. Sometimes we all need to just. . . go over the edge.)

Denise said...

Lorena said it better than I could!

That guy was a total jerk and he totally deserved anything you could have said to him. I can't imagine parking so close to someone that I had to exit the passenger side of my vehicle! Let alone just leaving it that way. grrr!