Sunday, October 08, 2006


Scotty first. I have continued to visit him each mid-day and evening. He's brighter today. His blood count is up. Most of his chemistry is up. But he's still so critical that the vet wants to keep him all weekend.

The vet astonished me today. We were talking about his progress and prognosis, and I was expressing my fears and concerns. And I thought I heard her say something so shocking that I asked her to repeat it, and she did; she said she had not had a solid night's sleep all week, because of her concern about Scotty. Yes, she has been as sleepless as I. That flat shocked me. I knew I loved my vet. Now I double-love her!!

I suppose I have to provide the boring "hand report." It's the same. No progress. Friday I called my doc just to check in. It's now been 14 days since this started. I always teeter between two extremes: worry that I am being a hypochondriac, or that I am neglecting what needs checking. So I called. And was again told to 'sit tight.' They said that, so long as it's not getting worse, I should continue to exercise patience – but the nurse also offered that if I want a 2nd opinion, they would provide a referral to a neurologist. A gazillion people in this backwater town have warned me that the one and only local neurologist is a quack.

Then my dad (who lives in another state) called out of the blue. He had talked to a friend who is a neurologist, who was incensed that I have not yet seen a neurologist. He was pretty adamant that I need to take that step. I guess I'll do so next week. I am getting increasingly frustrated with my one-handed existence. As I have mentioned, I also have a friend who says he can get me an appointment with a really good neurologist; I suppose I should take him up on his offer.

It has been a rough but rewarding work week. I taught two workshops this week, and have another big conference upcoming next week. I like doing these! – but just wish I felt more able-bodied. I'm teaching 3 sessions in a five work-day period. As I told my staff last week: next time I agree to such a schedule, please slap me upside the head!

There was a funny moment at the conference last week. My staff and I sat down to one of those conference banquet luncheons at a table of 10 people. The servers gave me my plate with pasta, a chicken breast, and vegetables. I was looking at that chicken breast when one of my staff said, "You want me to cut that for you?" I cut a look at her that first made her think I was critical, but then she interpreted it correctly: as a plea for help. Like a five-year-old, I let my staff member cut up my meat. It was a moment of grace, as far as I'm concerned. She was cool and relaxed with it, and I was just grateful. I'll let your imaginations guess how the other people at that banquet table reacted; it was pretty darn funny!

One of the significant challenges in my newly one-handed state is doing laundry. And its corollary is putting on clothing that requires buttons. I'm doing laundry tonight, but I've learned an important, practical lesson: Leave the buttons buttoned when doing laundry. That way, I can just slip the blouses over my head, instead of having to re-button them. It’s all in the details . . . .

And that's all I have to say tonight. I'm trying to plug along doing my regular activities. But it's darn hard when the lack of a right hand slams into your daily life in so many ways.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad to hear that Scotty is holding his own. And, that you are finding ways to cope. And, that you are going to a neurologist. Good for your Dad to talk with someone. Make time to take care of yourself. We need you.

10/08/2006 10:40 AM  
Blogger Ann said...

Yes - see the Neurologist!!!

10/08/2006 10:55 PM  
Blogger Cranmer49 said...

Have you made arrangments yet, O One-handed Gimp? If not, will you do it by Close of Business Tuesday? Scotty needs his Home Health Aid at 100% when he gets home.

Even if you don't want to do it for yourself, do it for him!

10/09/2006 1:25 PM  

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