I don't dwell on unpleasantness -- life is too full of bad things to voluntarily prolong their presence in our lives. So I wasn't going to mention my accident or injuries any more, but... it seems the latter are going to stick around a while and, if I'm being honest in reporting about my life, I can't sweep them under the rug. So I am going to be candid about the challenges I'm facing -- but with humor and good spirits. I'm going to talk about my existing reality without diving into pity.
Have you ever been seriously injured? How long did it take for you to recover? During that time, what kept your spirits up?
It's hard, when you face searing pain on a daily -- even hourly -- basis, to be happy. To smile. But I'm trying. I'm learning that the simple activities in life we perform without thought (making coffee; putting on clothes; driving a car) are actually complex physical acts. My right arm is still useless and my left thumb has no strength, so I have half of one hand to do things. Barely enough to open a bottle, or pour milk, or carry a briefcase. But I struggle to do those ordinary tasks and frequently forget my limits and get punished with burning physical pain.
But getting back into normal life as quickly as possible is necessary to avoid depression. Many injured people get depressed when they can't live normally. The change, especially when abruptly caused by trauma, is too stark for them. That won't happen to me because I know how to avoid it and, having a far-more serious previous accident under my belt (motorcycle crash in 2003), I know I have the deep inner will-power to push past all pain and recover my health. I did it before; I can do it again.
There's even comedy in this. Gina has a stick-shift (manual transmission) on the right side which I can't operate with my right arm. So, to drive to work, I've become a contortionist. When I need to shift gears, I twist my entire body to work the shift with half of my left hand. It looks ridiculous but gets the job done.
I'll understand if some of you aren't interested in hearing tales of recovery. If so, check back in a few weeks. Otherwise, I'll try to keep my stories light and entertaining. I don't want to stop blogging and, right now, struggling through physical injury is my reality. My unavoidable new reality.