Hello again everyone.
I hope everyone is doing as well as I; salmon, broccollini, and teriyaki sauce qualifies as doing well, I do believe.
I will try to be more concise and more informative than the fluff that was Tuesday’s post. Because, as we all know, you can never keep it too real.
The first milestone of this summer was the one-year anniversary of my accident-July 8 around 1 AM. For those who don’t know or have forgotten, I was on Lake Muskego north of Milwaukee and was quite literally saved from drowning and brain damage by some very special people. Now, I’m impressively bad at keeping dates (I forgot my 23rd birthday) and even this date, which one would assume holds some significance in my life, I didn’t realize was occurring until the day before. My thoughts on the anniversary of the accident are of the same tone as those on my general situation overall–only focused on the 2 inches in front of you. I can generally control that. Everyday and every inch I am progressing (I have quarterly assessments with the ABLE program that tangibly document the increase in my core strength, balance, and leg muscles); But the key here is “inches”, because goddammit inches aren’t very far, especially when…a hhhhhhh…. You have a really far way to go.
I am not at the level of function that I thought I be 13 months out, but then again I have, and I don’t know if this is good or bad, set my only real goal as being able to walk. So some things I should celebrate, I simply cruise past with my eyes on the prize (while sculpting my thighs). July 8 milestone–complete.
One of these celebration points was me getting my driver’s license and adapting my van so I can push the whip myself. This only happenrd a week ago, so the streets are still getting used to having T-daddy as their guardian. The importance of this ability I cannot understate. The independence is so heavy, I have an orated speech from Bill Pullman, unfortunately his royalty demands were just too high. Whereas I had to inconvenience at least one person, if not more; now its just me, TC. Even more incredibly I can sit alone in the van listening to the radio and eating a quarter pounder with cheese. No Terri, no Cokely; just me and processed beef. Priceless. Milestone #2 self sufficient transportation–complete.
But really, if anyone sees a 2005 Town and Country, give it some space. The driver has a 3 inch metal rod in his neck.
In what we will call “c2”, in this Pythagorean theorem of moments, is my new found ability to relieve myself. Again, this ability is nigh a week old, so the full benefits I have yet to experience; but let’s just say that my independence/freedom is a combination of Independence Day, Braveheart and the feeling of getting work around 1:30 on a Friday. But, and this is where those smart people who can read into actions and feelings really well can interpret, the more I utilize adapted equipment (which certainly makes me more independent and creates an aura of my life before the accident), the more handicapped I feel. Its as if somebody says you are a mermaid, but don’t believe him/her until you see yourself sitting on a rock seranding sailors. Whereas before you saw yourself as someone just swimming around a bit, and not necessarily a mer-creature; now that you are singing to that seafarer, you are definitely a mermaid… Its merman.
So, with that feeling in mind I’m both happy to dip to Dairy Queen whenever I want; but I’m also deeply at odds with accepting my actual condition. Anybody ever see the TV series “Twin Peaks” from the early 90s? No, you didn’t? Well, there was a quirky FBI agent named Dale Cooper, who (SPOILER ALERT) at the end of the first season gets shot 2 times in a bullet proof vest and once in his gut. First episode, season 2 a few hours after Dale is shot he attempts to get up from his hospital bed. The Twin Peaks sheriff pulls him down and tells him he needs to rest. Dale Cooper then blurts out possibly the world’s most inspiring quote “When the will is involved, the human body can do miraculous things” (at least I think I think that’s way he said, my Netflix gets a little jumpy). I feel that way 4-6 days out of the week, and goddammit if Dale Cooper got out of bed to chase down James and Laura Flynn Boyle, so can I. Milestone 3 Automous living–in progress.
Through my therapy, the focus is now on being able to rotate my pelvis while standing and squat 20* on the Chuck Norris sled. We will see if I’m there the next time we chat.
Hope you guys have a great rest of the summer. Make sure to enjoy those refreshing dips in the water, because they are irreplaceable.
Hasta luego. Thomas