Monday, June 23, 2008

Up!

I did something today both incredibly dangerous and stupid; something Linda and Cheryl and even I agreed I would never do.

Saturday and Yesterday I felt my life change forever.


Saturday I was on a ship, the Coho Ferry, lying down, breathing, and still not able to convert enough oxygen to sustain my life (I was de-compensating). That what it means when your lips and fingers turn blue, and that process doesn’t stop there, but goes on until your nose and your fingers are black, until you slip into a coma to try and preserve your brain unless you have oxygen.

I was lucky. The ferry had oxygen, and an EMT. Still, he wanted the boat to be met by an ambulance and EMT’s which would carry me off the ship.

An event like that left me scared, and looking into a future where my life was to be determined by perimeter of the 50 feet of tubing from my oxygen converter. Because when three different EMT’s work on you, or watch over you for 8 hours to try and get you home, conscious or at least alive, then popping out for a weekend trip…..how does that happen? Even the most mundane trip with Linda to help get groceries would need to be done with the reserves of oxygen lest I pass whatever invisable threshold of destruction from my disease (MSA/AAN), some threshold of energy depletion which turns my compensating body into a DE-compensating body. And then I would have to be rushed home, or to a hospital. That is the future, and if anything is likely to change, it will be toward needing oxygen 24/7.

That reality crushed me. Crushed my attempt at viewing myself as an autonomous person.

Last night was one of moaning and pain pills every 3.5 hours and this morning I woke to even MORE pain than the day before. Great!


I sat in The Chair and didn’t know what to do. I was still in shock and it hurt to breath. Things like watching a DVD or doing postcards seemed pointless; seemed so far away from where I was.

I looked outside at it was overcast but without much of a breeze. The last two weeks, I had planned, and tried to go out in my racing wheelchair to train. Becuase there is an upcoming 10K using the SAME course as the TC 10K. But I was never well enough to do the training. Cheryl and Linda had agreed that because of the nature of the wheelchair it was far too dangerous for me to ever do alone. I had agreed.

First, I have NO WAY in the racing wheelchair of reaching the oxygen canister by myself, in fact the chair is made so you HAVE to lean forward to not tip over backwards. Second, I am in a chair two inches tighter than my tightest chair, so there is no place to store anything, from a cold pack to any form of liquids; particularly the liquids that keep my BP stabilized. So to go outside would mean leaving my day wheelchair behind. That means I would HAVE to come back up the STEEP hill, though traffic, all in the racing wheelchair; all things I had never done before. To do it the first time, alone, in daytime traffic: STUPID, RISKY, DANGEROUS.

I thought, “It looks like a good day to go training.”

I thought, “It would probably be better to spending the day resting. Besides, training by myself is really risky." I paused, "AND Linda would kick my butt.”

I thought, “But, I’ve thought out the route and while it might be risky, it is also, I think, possible.”

Possible.

I thought, “When are you, Elizabeth going to decide to do SOMETHING?”


I thought, "Does it have to be this? This is riskier than the trip to Port Angeles and look what happened there!"

Possible.

I went and had my shower. My home care arrived at 11:30 to give me my shower. I told her, I’m planning something which means I will leave at 1:00, half an hour early. I told her I was going for a training run, all the way to the breakwater, then past the cemetery again and up the big hill, five big long hills and and somewhere between 7-9 km. I hadn’t eaten yesterday since lunch, hadn’t eaten that day. I drank two Gatorade.


My caregiver knew Linda would kick my ass. She was curious to see what happened. I got the helmet and dressed for training. I got the care giver to put on the suntan lotion and put the bike lockup key in the pocket in my top.

I when to the bike storage, pulled out the racing wheelchair, transferred and locked myself down. I had forgotten my helmet and my caregiver went back and got it. And then I was alone, either to continue, without liquids and with five hills before I could return or I wasn’t.


I started out. I had to go through traffic. They weren’t patient. I whizzed down through Cook street village then stopped outside to adjust my MP3 earpiece (gotta get up those hills best I can, I only use one ear piece so make sure I can hear what is going on around me). Then I started up the hill of Cook street (I guess six hills, missed counting this one) toward Dallas Road.

It was slow at first, and as it wasn’t Sunday there wasn’t anyone looking or waving, just trucks trying to pass, or people taking shortcuts, as Dallas Road has no traffic lights. I passed mile zero, trying to concentrate on staying low, on using the punch of the downstroke and add an upstroke pull to it as well. My thigh bone from Saturday started to hurt. Nothing to do, my feet were tied down and I don’t know why it was hurting, just the vibrators from the road and the frame made it ache so bad I wanted to claw something. I went down to the breakwater, did the full distance. At the end of the parking for the breakwater I tried to turn 180 degrees, a u-turn as practice for the race turn points. Didn’t work. I ended up half on the sidewalk. A elderly woman asked if I needed help. She couldn’t lift my front wheel. I backed myself off the side walk and leaned back enough I was balanced on my back wheel with my front one in the air. I finished the turn that way. There are no pictures. No place to put a camera for one; no one to take them for another.

Now it was a long 1.5 to 2 km of uphill, punch and pull and punch again, punch and pull, and don’t stop the rhythm no matter how tired you get. Just keep it going. Lonely road. The clouds had burned off and now it was blue skies and sun beating on my back. I dare not stop or slow lest I overheat. God, there really is acid in my right thigh bone. I keep going, over the top of the hill, and down, passing Cook street and down the hill, whizzing past the cemetery as two boys try to race me, running as hard as they can, but I pass them. Then I am going up the hill.


I notice I am not as fast overall as the last time I went training. Not as fast. But I was out training.

I had taped the knuckles which bled last time I trained, but I could tell they were getting a pounding. Punch and pull, punch and pull. The feeling in the knuckles would go away soon. I crested the hill above the cemetery, and though I planned on stopping, I even looked over at the bench I planned on pulling myself out of the wheelchair to sit and rest on. Instead I did a U-turn, a little better this time and went right back down the hill past the cemetery and and attacked the giant hill on the other side. Punch and pull. I tried not to think, I tried not to listen to the pain in my shoulders, in my arms, or worse in the bone of my thigh. I just punched and pulled, I stared at the road, I sometimes tapped the micro adjuster. I couldn't even tell what music was playing. I had to get up that hill. "Come on, come on!" I said to myself between gasps. I said that over 100 times going up hills, forcing myself on flats or inclines to pick up the pace. "Come on Elizabeth, come on!"


The cars and trucks roared by, I looked up at the people inside, they didn't even look down. But I made it to Cook street, and one last time I bent my body as far as it would go, bent like those ex-ballet dancers who seemed in boxing class stretching to be far too flexible. I had my hands far past my feet, my back low and head so my chin touched the frame. My hands in the gloves, stretched far ahead had the thumbs hooked into the push steering.

My thigh bone hurt so bad I wanted out. At Cook Street Village I stopped by the bus stop. One man looked at me briefly but then continued to check the bus schedule. It only took 10 seconds to realize there was no out, only on. So I angled back out, checked over my shoulder and push, push. Too tired to pull now, just push and push. I was on the hill up Cook Street. On the opposite sidewalk was a woman with a walker. We raced in slow motion. I refused to use my thumbs to hook the spokes to pull me up. I would finish this as I had done the training, punch the rims.

In truth, in my planning, I did not see how at the end of training, I could make it up this hill which I could do in my day chair only a few inches at a time. It was too steep and I would be too tired. This was the grey hole in my planning. I punched, and looked over to the woman with white hair on the walker. She yelled some encouragement but I couldn't hear it above traffic. She smiled. I smiled back and then lowered my head. "Come on Elizabeth!" I punch, and punch until I overtook the walker. She grinned and waved.

At the top of the hill I turned and then turned again, one last hill, away from traffic. Finally, at last, the final turn into my driveway, 1 hour and 11 minutes after the first punch out onto the road. When I saw the bike lockup doorway at the far end of the drive, I started crying. Little sobs bursting out of me as I steered around the speed bumps. And tears falling down, leaving wet ponds and imprints on my joggers. I pulled myself out of the racing chair and back into my day chair crying the whole time, sometime silently, sometime not.


It wasn’t the pain. It was the emotion. I had willing chosen risk again, forced myself and won. A dam of emotional release let loose; I had part of my life back. That was worth crying over. I did not let my body or recent medical history dictate who I was going to be.

I cried because my world was bigger than fifty feet of tubing from an oxygen concentrator.

I could hardly wheel, because my arms were twitching so badly, my knuckles bloody from the punch and pull, even through the medical tape. My hands weren’t functional, shaking visibly in a tremor so wide, it was a quarter inch. I dropped everything. It took a long time to get the door open. I was smiling, I was crying, I was in pain, incredible back and body pain.

Upstairs, I had another Gatorade and tried to eat a sandwich Linda made. I dropped it. Ate it anyway with both hands and forearms holding it. I wrote a couple emails saying, “I did something stupid, but I think I am getting better!”


Then I took my blood pressure and becuase of what I saw I waited five minutes and took it again. My diastolic was so high (over 100) and my systolic higher along with so many erratic heart beats (over 25%) I thought that I was sure to have a TIA. I might have one just if I sneezed. I tried to write a synopsis on the comments from yesterday in case I lost my memory. But then I erased it. I couldn’t make a synopsis of pushing myself for three minutes longer than my Times Colonist 10K, but without Gatorade or Oxygen, without any cooling vest or cooling device of any kind. I couldn't make a synopsis of what that meant to me.

My body was shaking, from the heart erratic and the pain. And yet, I was smiling, because I had a SHITLOAD of endorphins running though me! So why, 7 hours later am I still smiling, even though my painkillers can’t/aren't taking the edge off the muscle pain I feel?

I have hope again. I am living. Yes, I was in pain, and I am in pain but pain I had planned, pain I chose. And yes, things could have gone badly. I could be in the hospital. Linda told me after she found out that the oxygen bottle I took was empty, all the full ones were in her van at work (????!!!!!!). So much for my slight safety back up.

I have entered to race the Hudson Bay Company Canada Day 10K. Unless hospitalized, I will be up at the very front of the race in my retro old racing chair carrying an extra 10 lbs of oxygen and cold break packs. I will be an official wheelchair racer.


It may/will likely be the last 10K I will do. I am getting slower. Like boxing, I am not building muscles, not getting reserves. But I plan to finish it. If I have to dump water over my head and get out of the racing wheelchair and lie down and rest and then be poured in to do a few more km and rest again, I will finish the 10K if it is possible for this human. Maybe I will finish it even if it isn’t considered reasonably possible for this human. Did you see that? That was hope AND sass!

I want to live for a week, I want to live until I can race that 10K. I will race it for me and for all neuro degenerative diseases, fatigue and pain chronic conditions, Lupus, Lymes, all of them ride with me, all up at the front with the wheelchair racers: because stability and consistency are not the defining aspect of disability, nor are they going to be the limits of the wheelchair racers that day.

After getting back I was sent an email. I had wanted to enter a photo contest. My lack of telling days and time meant I missed the finishing date. The photo contest was from the paraplegic society (I am a member). The emailed me to tell me it had NOT finished. They sent me a reminder to send in my pictures of “The view from the chair” to be in the contest. What is this, TWO things to look forward to in one day?

My hands were non functional for two hours. I took the BIG pain relief pills, over 100 mg of pure Tramadol, synthetic opiate. Didn’t help AT ALL. I was in pain from every nerve left in my arms that still existed. And the rest of my body, my back, all complaining. I still couldn’t hold my hands still or use them. Took the strongest muscle relaxants I had, the pill fell on the floor. So did I, and I licked it up.


I took it and I lay down. My body and bed shook from the WHUMP, WHUMP, WHUMP of my heart beats. It seems I had done something a little foolish, and now I was going to pay the price. It seems I had done something a little wonderful and now I would pay the price.

I have decided. I am going back to Port Angeles, and I am going to the Hoh rainforest. This was was where we originally intended to go on Saturday, but I was too weak for the transport out there so we went to Hurricane Ridge. But it turned out I was too weak for that too.


I don't know how, but I will figure out how to go to the Hoh, and then I will do it. I will go back, not to hurricane ridge but to the Hoh Rainforest and I will take my wheelchair out on the trails. This is my will. I have, in all this zeal of making decisions, taken the small decision that trying to do go to the Hoh BEFORE doing the HBC 10K race might be pushing it a little. Like playing Russian roulette with an automatic bullet clip would ‘pushing it a little.’ I’m not stupid (no laughing!). I’m just a little high on not being fate’s kick doll.

The 10K will only be the aftermath. Today, going out, knowing I was weak, knowing I had not trained in over two weeks, refusing to alter the training route I had planned and decided on three weeks ago (Linda thought it EXTREME then), doing it to the last punch on wheel rim and then coming home. That was the Victory. I faced my depression, my pain, my fears (which were many) and I decided to act, to get ready and to go down to that bike room. I made my own dream into a reality, even if I had to play the odds to do it. And that is why I cried. And that is why I smile even though every letter I type just adds more pain. And I will be in pain for a while (a long while?).

I asked you to watch and witness, and now I ask for you to rejoice with me. Because while going out alone today was a VERY STUPID thing to do…I made it. And now there is balance. Now there are TWO possibilities. One, that my plans and dreams will be wrecked, and that I will again have a DE-compensating body, unable to sustain my own life, trapped and bound to the hospital bed and my oxygen until whatever horrid fucked up central nervous system part of my melting brain decides to recover. Or ANOTHER POSSIBILITY: that my plan might work, that I will have to pay a price, surely, but that I can still MAKE plans, because as long as I am willing to pay that price, it doesn’t ALWAYS have to be pain spent alone, while the world spins on.


So now, there is the chance, the possibility of looking forward to things, and this time that meant coming home 1 hour and 11 minutes of pushing myself as hard as I could and making it. So what if three of my fingers turned a little black at the tips after that? That’s why there are oxygen concentrators waiting for us at home, right?

My life isn’t my own, I cannot will-to-power how I want things to go. I know that. But my decisions, my dreams are my own again. And that I did not have yesterday.

I still don’t know how to go on in the long term (long term for me means ‘two months’), but I’m smiling again. I’m crying because I WON. And I know how to live for the next week or two.

(I WON!)

It’s a start.

24 comments:

cheryl g said...

WooHoo! Maggie is going to read me the riot act for saying it but... sometimes the risks are necessary and worth it.

You will tell me when the 10 K is and I will be there as part of your pit crew. This is not negotiable.

Now I am really hoping the tube extension for your camelback hydration system arrives this week so I can get you set up for proper hydration for the race.

Neil said...

Yup, you're right, Beth; that was stupid. (in our house, the female is always right; I supposed that COULD work for you two too...)

I'm not going to chastise you, dear. That's what Linda's there for (just a little upset, is she?); well, that and hugs and X-rated stuff.

You probably shouldn't have done that training run, but you did, and you survived. I know you want to die living, but I'm glad you made it home. I'll bet Linda's not going to do much except wait until the high wears off, then say "I told you so!"

Yeah, we do stupid things, and sometimes pay for them. Since you're paying anyway, you might as well have something to pay FOR. And did you get the bike cage locked again?

And while we're asking silly questions, did you get to the post office on Saturday? Email me privately, kiddo, to let me know exactly how much I owe you!

Still here, celebrating all the ups and downs with you, and sending lots of hugs as needed,
Neil

Judith said...

You make me glad to be afraid for you! It's your life then - still yours and under your control!

Also, I love your description of your careworker - sort of disconnected from you but vaguely curious about what you're going to do next. And the lady with the walker - she was in the right place at the right time to be rooting for you!
Sounds like a good day!

yanub said...

Yay, Elizabeth! Good for you, doing what you want to do and being willing to pay the price. I'm sure you can make it to Hoh. Just, seriously, find a way over that doesn't involve the ferry.

I'm glad you have decided to push your limits. Why shouldn't you? And who would expect you to suddenly stop being who you are, a woman who has always had a fine disregard for limits. You should do what makes you happiest of the choices you have, because the whole point of having a life is to live it.

Oh, and I'm glad to know you are eating. I was getting all mom earlier today, wondering if you were eating. So, good. Be sure to have some ice cream, too.

Elizabeth McClung said...

Cheryl: yeah, I am starting to fear the wrath of maggie. I think it was a stupid but calculated risk which means I don't have to do another one for at least.....a week? I will tell you went, once I can figure it out myself. I am signed up but I still can't figure out days of the week.

Neil: Um, The Rocket is Launched! Is that the code? Mission Go! Or rather, look in your mailbox as it was sent first class Saturday. Will send email on details.

Well, I was hoping you would agree with the "rejoice" part not so heavy on the STUPID part. Actually becuase Linda had decided "Oh, she is in no shape to go outside today" becuase of giving me pills and being woken up by my moans she skipped bringing in the full oxygen bottles to make it on time to a meeting, so her guilt nixed SOME of my stupidity.

I am sure the "I told you so" will come from the caregiver on down tomorrow when I am a shivering moaning wreck going "WHY?" That's when they go "You play, you PAY, remember!"

I did lock the bike cage. And put the wheelchair racing bike back in it's spot.

Judith: Honestly, I didn't expect to be quite so quickly turned around. Perhaps it was my feeling of lack of control, lack of future which made me make such a BIG leap but having been down, and having been up - I would rather be up, even knowing I will still have the downs, I know that up is still possible now.

Yeah, that lady in the walker really helped me get up that hill. I hoped the story was written well enough for interesting reading. How interesting can a training run be?

It was a good day I think, so much has changed for me since Saturday morning that I can hardly process it and that is what part of the writing is about I think.

Yanub: Well, there is an alternate speedboat which is faster, so that may be an option.

Honestly, yesterday I didn't know WHO I was, since the option of disregarding limits had seemed to have been taken away, leaving what, isolation, pain and terror? Suck!

So yes, I am very happy to have an identity which is slightly altered, I don't expect EVERYTHING to go as planned, I don't expect to GUT through it or that the plan will survive reality, but I can still plan things now. Still have adventures, even if they are a little smaller, with tighter limits, shorter times than before.

Actually, I am eating ice cream right now.

SharonMV said...

glad for you Beth! Next time - proper hydration, O2 & support person(s). I got your e-mail today & replied. Finally got your package sent too. We'll talk again soon. Feel free to e-mail me anytime you want. I'm not a good morning person so may not reply until afternoon.

Sharon

sly civilian said...

"but I can still plan things now. Still have adventures, even if they are a little smaller, with tighter limits, shorter times than before."

:)

Isis said...

You rock.

Neil said...

Well, dear, I am a parent, after all. I'm SUPPOSED to disapprove of stupidity.

I think, had I been there to greet you, I would have screamed at you for being stupid while hugging you for returning still alive and safe.

But, considering the stupid things I've done - oh, what the hell: WOOHOO!! You made it home, you have announced to your world that you are back in control (as in control as possible), and you've got A Mission.

So consider yourself hugged just because I love you, and because you're feeling, um, better? Alive; that's it. You're feeling still alive.

Now I have to hug you once more, quickly, 'cause I gotta run off and buy painter's tape.

You rock, Beth!
Hugs,
Neil

Oh, Cheryl's kind offer? Take her up on it. Do NOT make me send Maggie after you. I can find her email addy and sic her on you, y'know.

Ellie said...

You really are one of God's own prototypes.

*looks on in admiration*

- Ellie from Knoxville, TN (delurking at last!)

Wendryn said...

Wow!

I am mixed - I'm really happy you decided to go out and kick some ass again, but I worry about you, too. The happiness is much stronger, though. :D

Hugs and good thoughts for you continuing to decide on your own course.

Lene Andersen said...

I cried right along with you. A bit extreme that training, but I completely get it. You took a hell of a risk and you won. And even if you'd ended up in the hospital, you'd still have won, because you did it the Beth way. You won. Fantastic!

You flew. And it was effing glorious.

Perpetual Beginner said...

Sometimes stupid is a good and necessary thing to be (or do).

Go Beth! Good luck with the 10K. I will be, like judith, glad to be afraid for you.

abi said...

In hindsight, all things considered, it was an excellent idea! I'm so pleased that you succeeded beyond reasonable expectation.

em said...

Oh hon. That is the most beautiful thing I have read, I ... all this emotion rising in me while I read it. This is what makes you Elizabeth Fucking Mcclung, where Fucking means life, a thick rich stream of it something that we only find if we are willing to pay the price.

That woman with the walker was a face of god you know...

Veralidaine said...

YEAH!!!

Okay, I SHOULD be scolding you for the risks, but hey, I'm your oddball cousin from Colorado, so I'm allowed to encourage you behaving dangerously. I don't have to be all mature and wifely like Linda or sisterly like Cheryl.

I'm cheering with you. Scolding has been delayed for another day.

Dawn Allenbach said...

As long as we're willing to pay the price, we SHOULD do stupid things -- partly because people have this ridiculous notion that we're all rational and well-behaved, but mostly because we have the right to live, or die, in whatever way we choose. I should plan a couple of stupid things to do.

Gaina said...

My (able-bodied) friend has a saying: 'I will not be defeated, I don't give a fuck if it hurts!'. You embody that motto 100%. I might send him over to read your blog.

Just remember, many great inventions and advances in society have come from people doing 'Very Stupid Things' so you're in good company! LOL

xx

lilwatchergirl said...

Thinking of you. *Loving* how you won.

Loving the postcard you sent us, too. (I may have to look into this manga deal one of these days. They seem to have so many gorgeous lesbian characters. There is no bad there.)

Tammy said...

Okay, this post had me holding my breath thru most of it. You have to take control however you can..although this may not of been the safest way. We all want to live life on our own terms.
I'm glad that the practice run went well. I cheer you for your accomplishment, and I hope you don't pay too high a price.
Excellent post...excellent day!

Shea said...

Way to go! That is not what I want or need to say, but I hope it will suffice. You are living, and that brings a smile to my face, not dying, living......

Elizabeth McClung said...

SharonMV: Well, that is the plan, since in the managers meeting they were going around saying something from thier life and Linda said, Next Tuesday my partner is racing in a racing wheelchair in the 10K. And another manager who knew my condition said, "How is that possible" And linda said, I am going to bike to points to get her liquids and oxygen and cold packs so we hope she doesn't pass out" which made the other managers who knew her partner was "a little ill" blanche a bit. I guess the whole racing v. a person who keeps passing out might be unusual. I will await your reply on how to go on though!

Ohhhh! A package...for me!

Sly Civilian: I learn, I am just a SLOW learner! haha.

Isis: Thanks, to that I say, Rock on! And also more "good results" than "bad ones"

Neil: Yes, I can understand, Linda was pretty much the same, only, sort of exhausted, "Is there any point in yelling at you....are youy going to do it again?"

Me: "No, I hurt WAY to much to do it again today!"

Linda: "No what I meant was...nevermind."

With the pain today, I am DEFINATELY feeling alive! But yes, it feels good to have a plan than no plan!

Ellie: Thanks for commenting (have you emailed me your address so I can send a postcard!). And I am not sure if that prototype remark was positive or not. One of my teacher used to say they broke the mold after me. I said, "Cause I'm unique." and he said, "No, cause they decided it wasn't working!"

Wendryn: Thanks for the worry and I am glad this ended with a positive result, if it had been negative that REALLY would have put me in depression central.

Thanks, I think I have my sass back. Hugs back at you!

Lene: Thanks for getting it. As I pointed out to Linda, I am maturing as there is SOME debate in my head before I do something stupid. But yeah, making it was better than hospital but I got in the chair and took it out - I had lived the consequences and chose the risk anyway. I needed to do that.

Perpetual Beginner: I will try to get more pictures at the race (I will say between the helmet and the racing chair, it is not going to be a good hair day - I will be LUCKY to get helmet hair!). And yet, inspired stupidity is getting me though a week or two, so that's better than the alternative, I think!

Abi: I think in hindsight, I am darn lucky since about 40 minutes in I had that "I really need to regulate my BP" feeling, which is why I am feeling so bad today (see today's blog). But yes I am pleased that you recognize that the success was a) beyond reasonable expectation and b) I immediate set ANOTHER goal which is beyond reasonable expectation. This is why there is a sign on my cage: "Don't encourage her!"

Em: I am so glad to see you commenting again, I have been thinking about you a lot. Interesting, I hadn't thought about that woman in the walker that way but you were right, she was what I needed when I needed it.

Thanks, I will not always have such a high, we know that, but while we do, let's celebrate, and I am glad you are here to celebrate with me.

Veralidaine: thanks for the encouragement, you have today's post for your scolding. I will keep you updated on how things develop. I am trying to be sort of almost rational and accept that I HAVE limits.

Dawn: Exactly, I never signed up to be a more mature person than everyone else simply because I became disabled. I felt naked and shaken becuase it seemed the only way I knew how to see myself was taken from me. So I did what I do: I attacked it. Thankfully it worked.

Gaina: Well, I will sometimes be defeated, but you will likely have bite marks on your ankles afterward.

Yes, send him over. Well, I am not planning to go over niagra falls in a barrel or anything.....this week. So I will limit my stupidity to this and planning to race next week. But thanks!

Lilwatchergirl: Great to hear from you, and thank you. I am VERY glad I won. Glad I sent the post card, and yes anime and manga has MANY lesbian characters, I can send you lists and lists of series.

Tammy: well, considering the risks you take in your health (little ones) every day, you have to allow me a grand attempt every now and then, no? I am glad the writing was good, and he experience was good. I did not expect and up so soon after being so publically down. But I prefer up, don't you?

A very excellent day - and you can chastise me in the NEW post!

Shea: thanks, I appreciate it. Sometimes a yelled encouragement at the right time is just what I need. What I have needed. And yeah, it felt like living. It is only when you actually spell out the logistics of the race (Me: "We'll keep my day chair in the First Aid Tent because that is where I will be taken at the end of the race" Linda: "Yes, that seems like good planning) - that this seems a bit surreal, like the monty python of disability. Am I the knight on the bridge who refuses to accept I don't have any arms?

Shea said...

In response to your reply: You are the knight on the bridge without arms who says,"Who the fuck needs arms anyway? I have two legs and you better get the hell out of my way before you kicked!" Sorry for the profanity. I do not know if you have ever read Inherit the Wind, but I feel like Drummond did. I sometimes need to use all the words in the English language to get my point across.

phyrry said...

I think the thing about living with a chronic disease is, there are no good answers. There are better days and worse days and downright terrible days. But the day you stop going, that's the worst day of all.

You make me want to go bicycling alone again. The last couple of times I went out on a long ride, I ended up going scarily low on blood sugar, which is probably why I carry multiple full tubes of glucose tabs everywhere I go and order test strips by the hundreds now. I think I will go out this Sunday. I'm tired of being afraid.