I suppose it comes as no surprise since it was less than a month ago that I fell down a flight of stairs, dislocating my shoulder and breaking the humerus into several pieces just below the ball that fits into the shoulder. Among other joys, my tendons are no longer anchored and snap around like kite string. On a good day my upper arm hurts and on a less than good day it hurts a great deal. Today is one of those ice-pick in the shoulder days. I need to find the Tylenol. I refuse to take more opiates. There are worse things than being in pain.
I realize I am fortunate to be alive, not to have broken my neck, and a host of other terrible options that never materialized. I have a roof over my head and food in my mouth at my daughter’s home. She did not have to take me in. I am blessed that she did.
Now that my arm is no longer swathed to my chest I reflexively try to sign. Mind you, I don’t have anyone to sign with. I am live with generally soft-spoken hearing people who don’t sign and are unlikely to start anytime soon. My daughter used to know how to sign, but doesn’t like signing. I signed the Serenity Prayer for my OT today, just to have someone to talk with – she doesn’t sign. I taught her the sign for “God.”
I’ve stopped trying to participate in conversations I can’t understand since I am tired of hearing “never mind.” I’ve been considering using paper and pen. I do have to ask for things. I do not always get what I ask for – they are all busy people with busy lives. They to their best for me. I cannot ask for more.
I’ve learned how to do the dishes with one hand – using my right hand to hold a soapy sponge. No one asked me to. I want to help earn my keep. I found out I can’t scrub pots and pans. No, there is no dishwasher.
I know eventually I will heal, and also realize ASL is a 3D language and I’m not sure how to do it anymore. Sometimes the slightest motion sets the tendons and ligaments rolling around the inside of my arm and I stop in mid movement. Today the Occupational Therapist finally felt them and winced, asking, “Does it hurt?” I’m not sure “hurt” is the right word.
My daughter is marrying tomorrow and I was invited to practice. I now know I will understand nothing spoken there. My FM system is not with me and my good hearing aid does not work anyway. I thought about it and decided I will be quiet, attentive, and ask for nothing. It is her day, not mine.
I am tired. I took a shower and the attempt to wash my hair was challenging. My arm hurts. And perhaps also my heart… just a little bit.