Be like the squirrel

Some days I feel like the squirrels I see outside the window, trying to figure out ways to get seed out of the bird feeder.

I continue to be fascinated with how I — almost unconsciously — problem-solve and adapt to current physical limitations. The first few days home it was a challenge just to stand up from the chair and get to the bathroom with the walker. Then I started learning to do things such as making my coffee, using the counter to balance, then carry it back to my chair. I’ve got techniques for getting in and out of bed, getting something out of the refrigerator, socks on and off, washing my own hair at the sink.

It’s been just shy of a month now, and in that time this has become my reality. It’s what feels ‘normal’ now. Perhaps this is the natural process of adaptation and survival.

Being unable to take a shower has remained one of my primary annoyances (after the inability to get a restful sleep). That finally changed this week when the staples were removed from my incision.

But that just created another set of problems to solve: how to safely get in and out of the (walk-in) shower without falling? We tried a couple of things and concluded that a shower chair wasn’t going to work unless we installed hand rails in the shower.

After doing some googling, the best solution seemed to be a “bath transfer chair”:


I figured out how to safely sit down on it, carefully swing my leg into the tub, and then take a “shower” while sitting on it. Well shower in this case means being able to pour clean water over myself. But I have to say, that sensation was quite amazing after almost a month of bathing at the sink with a washcloth.

I celebrated by having a glass of wine — something I’ve not felt like doing very much. I sent Tris an email declaring that I was clean again.

Then I got up to get something from the refrigerator. And managed to knock one of the shelves loose, which created a cascade of falling bottles, including some Liquid Smoke, which broke on the floor and splashed all over me. So much for being clean. 2 days later I still get occasional whiffs of Liquid Smoke.

One of the dangers of adaptation: getting cocky and complacent with what I’m able to do. I figure that if that happens, I’m going to be at risk for making a mistake … which I think is what got me here in the first place.


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Filed under accident, recovery

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