Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Still Processing

As soon as the weekend’s events were over, I moved right into an intense and busy period, with a heavy teaching schedule this week and lots of travel next week. Almost immediately, I was reminded that my stamina is not what it used to be. Isn’t it nice, though, that I was able to forget that for even a short while? We’d been paring down obligations on the calendar in anticipation of the need to balance them with available energy, and then we needed to go through and do it again. Monday and Tuesday were intense and focused--and got done what needed to be done. Today is incredibly chopped up with appointments: OT, PT, the follow-up MRI, an out-of-town visitor, a haircut, etc. And there are two more biggish things that need to be accomplished, and soon.

Still, I’m feeling really good about having gotten through both the weekend’s events and the Monday-Tuesday marathon. In the back of my head, though, a little voice is issuing warnings. Something about pride goeth before the fall? So, while we’re all still feeling good about having pulled off a complicated series of events gracefully, I’m trying to pay attention to the signs that there’s still work to be done in processing all the complexity of the family gathering--signaled by the truly bizarre dreams I’ve been having.

Physically, things are continuing to improve: I walk up and down stairs without having to stop and really concentrate on it anymore (though I still am careful always to hold the railing and stay near the edge--the centers are still a little worrisome), my right arm has more mobility than it has since this adventure began, the incision is completely healed. In the cognitive deficits realm, problems persist. They’re mostly minor ones--if you don’t count not being able to read a sustained narrative--and I’ve learned a whole repertoire of responses for those circumstances when people just look utterly confused at something I’ve said or done. If I’m paying enough attention, I think I usually catch these and I can either rewind to correct whatever I said wrong or overlooked. Yesterday in class, I mixed up the readings--which I’d re-read just that morning--which is the kind of mistake I never used to make. That was an obvious one, since there were 100 students in the room and a pretty large number of them were engaged and tracking. Of course, who knows what I’m not noticing. People around me continue to be reassuring that it’s not visible to them how impaired I feel, so I keep putting one foot in front of the other. There isn’t any other choice, of course, so I’m trying to be cheerful about it and to keep looking on the bright side. Here’s one: what better excuse for being forgetful or using totally the wrong word than to have had a brain tumor? It’s a pretty high-class explanation. I just hate, as Kearney urges me to do when necessary, playing the brain tumor card. Still, my hopeful side thinks maybe even that is lessening in frequency. Again, though, would I really know reliably? It’s a conundrum.

I haven’t had time to figure out YouTube yet: we got our two sample snippets of the memorial service uploaded there and Michael and I can watch them, but we haven’t been able to figure out how to make them available to anyone else. Maybe it’s really obvious, but we sure haven’t found a way in the time we’ve had to think about it. What this calls for is a young person. Unfortunately for this task (fortunately in other respects), Shea isn’t plugged into that aspect of the subculture, so we’re just going to have to set that aside for a few days--maybe even until after the travel is over next week.

Onwards and upwards. At a deliberate pace.

1 comment:

  1. I hereby offer access to my nearly 19-year-old boy--if he doesn't know how to get this loaded for you, it can't be done. Call my house and ask to speak to Duncan (just don't call before 10 or so, when he emerges from the man-cave that is his room :-)).