Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Interesting... but (and) wierd

I'm thinking that I'm starting to see that there are many flavors of "can't."

One of the biggest, most immovable "can't"s is That Just Doesn't Work Any More. My feet, for controlling the pedals of an organ, for example. I can barely open the lid of the kitchen trash can... y'know, the "use your foot to push down the pedal and the lid pops open" kind of trash can. I can't put and then keep my foot on the pedal, I can't control it enough to really push it down. Eventually, I get the lid open, but ... that kind of "non-precision, non-operational" just won't cut it for an organ. Or a drum set. Or the damper pedal on a piano. Pretty much any instrument that requires the use of feet/legs, that part of the instrument, I just can't operate. Because stuff just doesn't work any more. (Yeah, heah, I know M.S. disabilities have been known to just up and go away, but as far as I can tell, for the moment.... nope. Doesn't work any more. Now, at least.)

Just plain "standing" is hard, certainly "standing with something in both hands" or "standing without using one of my hands specifically to keep me from falling over," and doing it for any length of time at all, just doesn't happen. I can brush my teeth without falling over, I can wash out a cup or a bowl. That's about it. And I do a *lot* of grabbing at pretty much everything, because the "and... Here we go, I'm falling over!" comes over me with no warning at all.

Oh, I could go on for longer than anyone would ever want to hear the details. (Including myself.) There are a lot of "can't"s. They range from "can't today, but maybe can tomorrow, who knows?" to "can't today, and probably won't be able to for the foreseeable future, including 'ever' " and "Can't. Just Plain Can't. Don't ask me to 'just try,' and please waste your time asking ever again. Can't."

"Can't today" comes and goes. "Probably can't tomorrow, either" doesn't tend to wander on and off, and "OH boy, I sure can't, don't waste your time asking" definitely doesn't leave.

But although "can't" screams for attention and sympathy, "can" is just as clearly illuminated.

I still can write music. Sometimes the "music writing" ability gets pulled under the "Can, but not today" umbrella, but only briefly, and when the "got to go to bed now now now now" goes away or is removed, "can" becomes very clear.

And yet, "can't" is what gets all the attention. When the "but not today" is off the table, and "can" is strong and easily reached to hand, why doesn't anyone notice? (Forget that, why don't I notice? Find solace? Care?)

Especially when I look back at all the things that have been taken from me, thank you The Disease and my concomitant issues, I've got to admit, some of them fall into the category of "Well, to be honest, it was time to let that go anyway" and at least one of them fits under "Dude, it was past time to let go of that—to get rid of that." Which means that now things fitting into "that needed to leave anyway" have gotten out of the way, the things that fit under "I still can" have finally been given room. Which means that, in some ways, I'm... better off, having M.S.?

Well, actually... I am. And that's just plain weird.

Interesting... but weird.

Interesting and weird.


Judy said...

OMG, I feel so guilty because I was laughing the further I got. I kept imagining a comedian's rapid-fire delivery, and you're talking stuff that is so consequential, and I'm laughing! Please forgive me. But, honestly thanks for the laugh.

I guess there is instant karma because the captcha has the word evil in it. Yikes!

Muffie said...

There's always that touch of hope, perseverance, and the positive in your writing. You make me want to chuck all the can'ts also. Thanks.

Robert Parker said...

Judy: Please, whatever you do, don't feel guilty about laughing. Our myelin may have checked out, but our sense of humor sure hasn't. And even Reader's Digest says that laughter is the best medicine...

And they are so right.