Just for the record...
...in case you've never thought of it, taking a shower takes a lot of strength and energy!
I find it so hard most of the time to take a shower. It all just seems like too huge a job, along with brushing my teeth. I just feel that weakness in my arms and neck and legs, when I think about taking a shower.
Now, I assure you, I do force myself to keep up with some semblance of dental hygiene, and I also am thankful for the invention of baby wipes!
Throughout my life, going back to when I was a kid and we had no running water, when I took baths in a "#2 tub" on the kitchen floor while my Dad heated up the same water to take his bath later on...on up to many years later and in many places in the west, living in cow camps and mountain cabins without water, I know full-well how to take an effective "spit bath."
Which is also a good thing because with the halo on for 3 to 4 months, no showers! Can't get the pin sites wet!
I'm really liking my shaggy-boy hair cut I gave myself last week. A lot. Probably because I'll be losing that this coming week when Pete gets out the dog clippers and I sit in the kitchen under the light with a towel around my shoulders.
I've a permanent notice on this site about Healing Friends (www.runboard.com/bhealingfriends ) , a faith-based message board I created over a year ago for those who suffer with neurological conditions. The woman who first had this idea for a support group and then mentioned it to me, Gale from North Carolina, will be in NY at TCI while I am there! Thus, I will be getting to meet Gale and our other HF friend, Karen, who will be the one who is helping me in the hospital and also flying home with me to help me with that. I believe God knew in March, 2008 when he inspired Gale about a Christian message board, that I would be blessed by their help now in April and May of 2009.
Like I so often say, my Dad knew I would need my sister Susan when he urged us to meet back in 1992. God knew I'd need a friend like that, too. Susan is my half-sister and we'd never really met until we both were in our 40's. Dear readers, love and hug your family and friends. I don't know if you've had times when you were in dire need, and someone stepped up to fill in the gap and take a stand and BE there for you. If not, then you don't know YET what it's going to mean to you when it does happen.
When you are lonely and desperate, when you are out of options, when you hurt and you are helpless, then God works through certain people in ways you wouldn't believe. It makes me question whether I've ever really obeyed the Lord and filled the gap and sacrificed for others the way these people have and will do. They are obeying God and I pray their rewards will be great.
Not one of us likes being helpless. We have survived this tough world because we feel strong in ourselves. We walk out in big, confident strides and never think we'll ever be struck down, we'll be the needy ones. And we can't imagine what being like that would feel like. I know because I never thought about it.
I look at notes I wrote a year and a half ago on my journey back to NY for the tethered cord surgery. I mentioned how I hated being pushed around the airport in a wheelchair, people looking at me.
Now, those feelings are gone. I've grown accustomed to appearing the weak one.
Here at home, I take off the CTO sometimes before I go into a store, giving myself a break from it. And when I come back out to the car and am going to put it back on, I must stand outside of the car to do it. I can't get it on from a sitting position.
So, I stand in the parking lot at the grocery store and the post office and the burger joint, and I have grown used to just not looking at people at all. I stare ahead through unseeing eyes and do my thing. If I look at people, then I have to use my energy, mentally, emotionally and physically, to smile at them and make them feel better by letting them know I'm fine, don't pity me!
So, I don't look at them...and I get my brace on and I get into the car, buckle up and away we go, my husband my driver...
Just thank God as you read this for your family, for your friends, for your e-friends, because when you need them, the true ones really be there for you. And you will learn a lot about need, and feeling useless and helpless, and about graciously receiving. And you will be a better person for it all.