Archive of ‘wheelchair’ category

Ancient Brain

I’ve never let the pain get in my way. Or the wheels. (Sometimes I feel like a spider, a girl with 2 arms, 2 legs, and 4 wheels equals 8 limbs. Have you seen Monsters Inc? I ‘roll’ by my self like freakin’ Mr. Waternoose.) I do amazing things, and they’re almost bright enough to hide the pain of living, even from me. 

I have been so busy, I actually don’t have time to be sick. Illness is a major inconvenience! Who needs pill breaks and resting and insomnia? I don’t let anything stand between me and living fully, especially not being sick, but it requires a re-evaluation of life, changing the definition to suit your needs. Exchange the cloak of pain for a smile, and put the tension in your back pocket for a time. But like every magic tricks or slight of hand, the reality behind the make-believe can’t be hidden from the magician. 

I can’t figure out the best way to list all the amazing things I’ve been up to without sounding really conceited and irritating. And I can’t figure out a way of talking about the bone pain without feeling like I’m hosting a whiney pity party. Which is why I am writing all this bizarre preamble. I guess. I don’t know. Sometime my fingers take my brain for a walk.

Um…I actually started writing this post because I wanted to talk about the Greek and Roman studies class I was taking at UVIC. See….you can never trust your fingers, because they take you places that your terribly logcial mind would not. Without further ado…I’m auditing a class at UVIC (my 3rd so far!), called ‘Jews and Christians’, which is every bit as rich in primary sources and apocryphal books of the bible(s) as I was hoping! I’ve also been studying latin for the past 1.5 years, and it’s marvellous! I only wish I’d learned it before tackling French and Spanish, and Biology (and music! and literature!), because so many of these words and terms have latin roots. Although the meaning of words have changed sometime during their multi-millennia trek from Latin to English, knowing the root of words help to understand their meaning. Can’t wait to start reading Juvenal’s satires & songs of Horace, but I’m definitely not there yet. 

The teacher of both these classes has the sort of passion for his subject that I was starting to believe was impossible with adults ;). We met Dr. Rowe at a thrift store and started chatting in line about Lyme disease. I learned that he was a professor of Greek and Roman studies at UVIC, and when he asked if I wanted to audit some classes, I was so surprised, and excited. My love of Roman and Greek mythology started at an early age, when a family friend & librarian gave me children’s version of Greek Mythology, ‘In the Morning of the World’. When I grew a bit taller and could reach the top shelves of the library, I found Robert Graves’ Greek Mythology tomes, which are a beautiful rendering of a culture’s complicated myths. I’d wanted to learn more about Greek & Roman philosophy, history, and religion at university, but I never dreamed I’d be able to handle the coursework, or keep up with note taking, or even make it classes. 

Sometimes you can surprise yourself. 

I type (almost) as quickly as someone can speak and am learning to tolerate my robot ‘Bruce’ reading and butchering ancient sources (“Kay-zar” is one of my favorites, for Caesar. Oh Bruce-y.) 

For whatever reason, I can ‘learn’ Latin in the way I just can’t learn any other subject, with the exceptions of Music and Spanish (a different part of my brain? who know!? who cares!!). I still struggle with severe short-term memory impairment, which makes it fun when I know no ones name, or if they know me. So my secret is you treat everyone with kinds and with an open heart, and figure out from their facial cues whether or not they know you. It’s hard for me to think of answers abstractly to Latin grammar questions (I hate & spurn grammar. Could you tell?), but if someone asks me a question and I don’t think about the answer, it is there, waiting for me to express it. I love translating Latin…it feels the same as working out an advanced Suduko puzzle.; you solve little pieces and get a glimmer of how it all goes together, and then all at once you’ve solved the meaning of the sentence, filled in all the numbers. 

Aegri Somnia Vana*

to the land beyond the sea

the fragrance of the earthen potpourri
    walking down the hint of a path,
    erased by impatient feet,
                      to the sea.
The forest marched down
to the waters edge
    clung to slivers in the severe wrinkled face of the cliff, and
    on islands the tide shaped;
Yet couldn’t,
   wouldn’t press,
   even a gnarled toe
into the rocky sand-shore,
    to feel a shy wave
    glide forward,
    reach around toes to heals, and
    tug you in closer to play.
How lonely!-
    to only drink
    the windward rains;
only feel briny breezes run wild fingers
    through needle-tresses,
only smell the suns reflection, scattered from every
    glistening pebble
    bull kelp, fallen feather;
To watch, and wait, at the precipice of a wonder;
To be rooted to this rugged, cumbersome land
    and never to touch, taste,
    one teardrop
                       of the Pacific’s compassion.

May your tears always find a path home to the sea. ~

Olympic Mountains

Written on November 5th, 2012

*Translation: A sick man’s empty dreams, a line of Horace’s

This chair is too small…this chair is too big…this one’s just right!

Heat wave. Finally. Victoria only gets a few days of real, glorious, hotness a few days a year, so we cold-blooded people have to soak up as much of it as we can. Its kind of a sticky day, but for once there is no hint of a cloud in the sky, and it feels like if you laid on your back and looked up for long enough, you could see clear out of atmosphere, past the galaxy, and into some far-off distant world.

Finally…the moment of truth.

It was warm enough today for me to wear my recently finished skirt that I made in my art textiles course, with the help of Lisa, my EA. I designed the scene on the bottom, which reminds me of a place in East Sooke that I love very much. It is surprisingly comfortable, sewn out of a light linen fabric, loosely fitting enough that I could walk, but not so much that it’s unflattering. The zipper is lightly off-center at the back, but unless I had told you that, I doubt you would have noticed. I’ve very proud of it. My first skirt!

I had a wheelchair fitting today. I’m getting a new wheelchair, which I am only too excited about. The wheelchair(s) I currently use are the kind someone would use for a few months with a broken leg. 2 years is really too long to be using a wheelchair with no support that doesn’t really fit me right. I will be so wonderfully comfortable to sit in something cushy. The wheelchair has so much padding it seems ridiculous…I’ll never want to get up (just kidding, tho). The bottom part of the one I chose feels strangely like brains…its a gel cushion. I am hoping to have part of the feel pedals in a toxic green color, which from the picture in the magazine looks like a lime green. I’m very excited about this. I am exhausted from standing up a bunch to squish into a bunch of different combination’s of backs and seats. It should be here in 2 weeks or so…can’t wait to go joy-riding with it…maybe a little racing too haaa.

Consider This Lesson Learned

I have learned so much from being in a wheel chair. This temporary perspective has changed my view of life, and I hope that you can learn these lessons other ways.

These are the lessons I learned.

I learned that sometimes the best way to make changes, in this instance, is to sit down to take a stand; that the only way to get where you need to be is to understand- where you are, where you’ve been, and where you’re going- and that knowing these things allows you to make the changes.

I’ve learned that the people who are best equipped to make changes, are the ones who have experienced the problem.

I’ve learned that if people must look down on you, your smile and charisma must raise you up to their eye level.

I’ve learned that if you cannot use your legs, your words must carry you further, and carry more weight than ever.

I have learned that if you cannot use your arms, your heart must reach further to touch others and hand yourself things.

I’ve learned that if you cannot trust your mind, that you must trust others implicitly, and that learning to trust others, is the surest sign you trust yourself.

I’ve learned that if you must get places, if you must do something or say something or think something, that if it is worth this great effort, than you might as well go full way.

I’ve learned that a broken body, a broken heart, a broken soul, and a broken mind are much more different than I thought, and you can survive with just one piece of your puzzle and spend the rest of your time repairing the others.

I’ve learned that if you had the energy to get sick, you must find within yourself the energy to get better.

Lessons learned.
Lessons learned.

%d bloggers like this: