“You know what my usual breakfast is?” Lilian asked as she was rolled up to the breakfast table. “Coffee and a cigarette.” Belly shots and meds for everyone.
Looking at the calendar, June 2, 2012 was a Saturday. I don’t have any notes for that day and I may have had one or more of the rotating temporary therapists. I know I had a scheduled release date by the 2nd: June 15th. I had less than two weeks before I would be sent back out into the real world to take care of three small children. It was a Herculean task given where I was on June 2nd. Urecholine was making no difference with my bladder so far and I was still being cathed several times a day. So is learning how to cath yourself part of the Rehab curriculum?
My left hand was showing some limited movement, but my shoulder still was not. When I was lifted to my feet, my left ankle would almost immediately roll and the only way I could “walk” was with the help of two therapists. One, often Germaine, would be next to me, supporting some of my weight and telling me to “look up, look up” as looking at your feet doesn’t work at all. Cheryl would be next to me on a rolling stool, lifting and placing my foot a step at a time. It was slow and tedious. 13 days? I’m supposed to go home in 13 days? I’ll be a cripple and a burden. I need a montage scene. Like now.
When I was 18, I left my hometown of Denver to go to college in Los Angeles with stars in my eyes. I was ready to take on Hollywood and become a major director. I lasted a year as Film Production Major. Turns out I could not talk mise-en-scene and I thought Citizen Kane was just kind of boring. My movie tastes were not highbrow enough for me to a film major, so I switched to Television Production. Then, I got a PhD in Medieval Studies. Go figure.
Where was I? Oh, yes, my lowbrow taste in movies and what that meant in Rehab in 2012. What it meant was that I was sitting in my wheelchair (now padded thanks to my PT Cheryl) waiting for my montage scene. You know, the montage scene in every cheesy movie where the downtrodden hero “slowly” overcomes impossible odds through short vignettes and ends up building something amazing and/or becoming someone amazing over the course of a single song.
Here is a classic example and one of my favorites from Rocky IV. In the cold, unfriendly USSR, Rocky Balboa prepares to face the Soviet boxer Drago to avenge the death of his friend and trainer Apollo Creed.
If only I could get a montage. If only I could go from hunched in my wheelchair to boxing a Russian over the course of a song. Or, if not boxing a Russian, maybe just peeing on my own and walking unassisted.
A note to those of you who have been reading every day: thank you, it means a great deal to me. Here in June 2014, things are starting to get crazy with the end of the school year, kids’ baseball, trips to see family and general “summerness” with young children. My original intent to post an entry every day is not realistic in the face of parenthood and remaining plugged into life as opposed to my laptop, so the entries may start to slow down from every day to a few times per week. If you’d like, you can subscribe by email, so that you will be notified when I post a new entry. I will still be posting them on Twitter (for my whole 10 followers–Twitter is NOT my thing) and Facebook, too.