Friday, May 17, 2013

Giving up; ear wax

"Giving up" comes in many flavors. From many causes? Perhaps, perhaps not.

A couple of days ago, having just learned new and quite wonderful "getting up" techniques, I had used the New Technique to stand up, to rise from a chair in the back yard. It was a wonderful experience. One of the easiest "stand up" moments I've ever had, MS or none. It was, in a word, beautiful.

A couple of nights ago, I was sitting in the same chair in the back yard. The ground was precisely as hard as it was the Afternoon of the Perfect Standing Experience, absolutely everything was precisely the same, except... me. For "whatever reason," and at the time and to this moment I have no idea what that reason was, I didn't do the New Standing Technique. Somehow, I wasn't able to commit to it. And before I was even halfway into the "standing" position, I was grabbing for support, grabbing for "plan B" in advance of needing to go for plan B. Or worse.

I managed to get out of my chair without injury or embarrassment or anything externally discommoding, but... it was a real "Peter suddenly sinking in the water" experience. "Wherefore did I doubt?" is indeed the question, and I couldn't, and still can't, answer it any better than Peter could.

But I'm definitely knocking on the door of "giving up." I've got no confidence in anything, I've been promising myself for days that I will write music, but right now, I don't know that I can. Just trying to scoot myself around the back yard in my transport chair a few minutes ago nearly brought me to tears, in the middle of the back yard because I very nearly couldn't get from the middle of the back yard to the door-to-the-house edge of it. I tried to get up and sit at my music-writing computer earlier today, I couldn't, I had to go lie down again... I'm writing this on a laptop resting in my lap just because dammit, I want to do something besides lie down in defeat. I may... may... try to make myself some tea. I may... may... go back to the "music writing room" and see if something can be made to happen. I may... may... just give up and have some medicinal herbs and hope that they will, at least, bring me a little ways out of this darkness. They don't bring me back to "getting stuff done," but they are pretty good about at least bringing me out of darkness. Most of the time. Often. Sometimes. We'll see.

Maybe I'll try to do some tote renshu (pronounced "TOE-tay REN-shoo," bare-hand practice) in the back yard; at least when you're working with "no" arrow, you don't have to worry about accidentally letting something with a point on the end fly over the fence and stick itself into God knows what. Maybe I'll try to make some tea. Maybe I'll go back into the "music writing room" and at least try... but I'm in a place where that's the least attractive of all the "maybe's."

Which is, of course, why I definitely should try it... or why I definitely should not try it.

A physical therapist once told me that all physical work needs to "hurt good." Because if it hurts bad, you're just damaging yourself, but hurts good means that you're not damaging yourself, you're recreating yourself.

And which will this be? Guess I won't know until I try it.

But even facing "starting to think about trying..." doesn't "hurt good."

And "not accomplishing" things that for days I have wanted to accomplish definitely doesn't "hurt good." So, it hurts both ways, the doing and the not doing, the trying and the not trying. Makes the choice "easy," don't it?

Perhaps I'll give up. For today. But only for today. Which means I'm not really and truly "giving up," is it?

Is it?

We'll see which "flavor" of giving up this turns out to be. Perhaps my response will be, as Dumbledore said as he tried one of Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans, "Alas! Ear wax!"


Muffie said...

I could have written that first part myself! I'm finding that I can a certain thing one day -- and do it well, but the next day, my mind takes over and says, "Oh no you can't."
Physically, there's absolutely nothing different from the previous day; however, my mind convinces the body that it can't be done.
Do not give up!! If you're anything like me, you'll be able to get up again, and then you'll wonder, "Why couldn't I do that yesterday?" As you've said before -- this disease can provide humor!

Robert Parker said...

Muff: Thanks for your kind words. I often describe my situation as "a moving target."

James Kirk in the original Star Trek said at one point "I am not going to kill... TODAY!" And adding "today, I will" or "I'm going to, dammit" to a desired activity sometimes works quite well.


Is it the brain ("the coconut," as a friend of mine describes it) in charge? Is the body? Is the spirit? Yes. Depending on the day. It's a moving target. (See above...)