I was lookin’ through pictures on facebox and found this one from last Christmas, post-injury when I was laid up in Dena’s living room. We are listening to The Music Tapes/Julian Koster playing “Silent Night” to us on the singing saw via cellphone! I was still wearing my hospital gown & was probably on a lot of painkillers.
I think I have written a lot about trauma brain and sad weird things about my accident, etc., but there are a lot of really amazing things that I remember about that time, too. There were always people coming by to visit, hang out and talk, watch movies, and bring food (lots of Christmas leftovers!). Dena had to work a lot but she’d always leave me an easy-to-assemble breakfast in the morning, and bring home food I could make myself if I was alone (bagels & rice-a-ronis and canned raviolis). Serra & Jacky drove me home from the hospital and helped wheelchair me into the house. Serra also set up a fundraiser for me to help cover expenses while I was out of work. Mike & his brother donated a hospital bed and set it up in the living room, and then they carried me, in the wheelchair, from my temporary room over a couple steps into the living room. Mr. David later built a wheelchair ramp for me out of scrap plywood. Marie brought me pizza and drove me places in her van to do important legal errands. Lonna came over on New Year’s Eve with Chinese take-out and movies, I think Katy and Martin (and others? Jean?) came over, too, and gave me a little bit of champagne. Some nights I sat on the porch with Matte & Jared & Clara and played records and guitars (and drank whiskey oops). Blake helped me change my bandages (he said not to wrap the bandages too tight because they are just supposed to feel like tiny hugs) and we compared notes on injuries and physical therapy and recovery. Nikki mailed me a robe and a Dorothy Parker book. Lydia shampooed my hair in the kitchen sink before I was able/allowed to take real showers. Juliet came over a few times during the holidays and Cat brought me cat food and Arby’s take-out and candy. Anthony came over sometimes and we talked about serious things and funny work things and he brought donuts and took me to work when I was well enough to go back but still using the walker. Petya drove me to all my doctors’ appointments and helped me with physical therapy almost every day. (Blake and Clara and Dena also helped with physical therapy but Petya had the most free time and was also most willing/most trusted to push me to exercise until I cried, in a good way tho, sorry neighbors not sorry.) Also my family drove all the way from Pittsburgh to visit me & brought presents and took me to restaurants and the Botanical Gardens!
I’m sure I’m forgetting a lot because most of that time is still just a blur. But these are some of the things I usually can remember easily and it’s important to think about when I start to feel like everything is terrible. It has almost been one year (!) and I still don’t really feel “all better” but I definitely often feel at least like “it’s going to be okay.”