Ten months, two concussions and not a single mark or bruise on my brain. I’m in better shape – headwise – than most retired football players my age, right?
On Friday the 13, Ledcat and I were rear-ended. It wasn’t horrific and no trips to the ER were needed. But fast forward two weeks filled with persistent headaches and what I thought was a kidney infection – I landed in the AGH ER this morning. Yes,concussion. No to the kidney infection, but it was instead (or is?) a muscle strain in that section of my lower back. They filled me with fluids and sent me home with scripts and the “rest rest rest” mantra.
Chronic headaches are no fun. I’ll get the house to the perfect setting lightwise, soundwise and so forth then a cat will decide to toss a tin feeding dish off the counter. Ouch. I struggle to think, to put sentences together.Words hover just beyond my ability to recall them. What you perceive as typos, I perceive as actually correct. Everything sort of skews to the right for me.
I can’t watch television. It is too loud or too soft and so I miss the news. I can watch Netflix on my laptop if the screen is angled just the right way and the volume soft. Musical interludes are painful. I do listen to books on mp3 and for some reason – listening helps me retain the information. I wish there were more books available from the library. But I’m very grateful.
Writing – ah, writing.I can do it, but it takes longer. Editing and spellchecking are hopeless so I officially declare this blog a “free form” writing zone for the next month. But writing is how I process my life experiences, how I cope with lack of abilities. Some level of filter has been ripped away, allowing me to really think about things like Christianity and the Not All Like That Project but leaving me befuddled over Words With Friends.
I’m pretty bummed about the back strain because that limits my ability to carry things. I was hoping a kidney infection would clear up in a few days with antibiotics and I’d be back to some degree of functionality. Now it looks like I’m going to be doing “modified housework” for a few months. Who among you uses these tricks?
- Toss the laundry down the stairs, kick it to the next flight and toss it again. Drag to machine and launder. Only carry upstairs what you literally must wear leaving the rest for your beloved. Point – tote bags make excellent transport for laundry.
- Load the dishes and the pans and the plastic and metalware. Leave the glasses and the pointy silverware for another. Same with unloading.
- My ability to cook is limited to the length of time it takes to grill a sandwich on the George Foreman grill. So I eat hummus, cheese, yogurt and accoutrements. I can’t even heat up soup because I can’t carry it without spillage.
- Make the bed before you permit yourself to take a nap.
And no driving for awhile. Great. That’s probably for the best because mind gripping headaches aren’t conducive to good driving.
Mind you this was a slow moving accident where everyone had on seat belts and – thank god – a child was fine. Our 12 year old car withstood the damage well. Everyone had insurance. We have health insurance. The car has already been repaired. It was an accident. The guy in front of us stopped short and made a fast right; we were able to stop, she was not. She was following too closely, but she took immediate responsibility for the accident and it was simply that. I have no idea how I strained my back – the doctor gave me some long explanation involving words like glutineous hyperextension and I just nodded.
So I’m supposed to take some light walks and a lot of naps. Wear sun glasses outside at all times. Stay away from loud noises. As annoying as all those precautions are, I can’t help but feel grateful that it wasn’t worse. I’m going to lose out on opportunities and miss clients and deadlines and such.
But I’m going to heal. I don’t want a bad back (obviously) but I also really don’t want a kidney issue because I take medication that impacts my kidneys. I’ve bounced back from breaking both of my feet (separately), a dog attack, and more. Sometimes your body falls apart when these things happen, sometimes all you can do it pick up the pieces and hope there are no zombies nearby.
If you happen to be on the Northside with a pumpkin chai latte, pumpkin cookies or an urge to fold socks, give me a holler.