Thursday, November 18, 2010

Don't even think it

I just spent ten minutes searching for a button that would say
When this is over, I'm going to have a nervous breakdown.
I remember that saying.  Didn't it go on -
I've earned it, and nobody can deny me.

Really, I like the humor in that.  But this is all I could find. And maybe the idea of breaking through your habitual mind to a difficult/different reality  is a good one.

This is that now it's Tom in the hospital - went in through the ER Tuesday night, on doctor's orders - getting all kinds of cardiac and neurological tests.  He took a fall that left him dazed, and which he can't remember.  The amnesia is a red flag.  The doctors are "leaning toward" a diagnosis of a seizure related to his post-polio syndrome.  If it's that, he will not be allowed by Ohio law to drive for six months.  I'm guessing they will need proof that seizures are under control.  But it could be some other mental event, TIA or stroke. 

He is not "himself" - usually a quiet, reserved introvert, a listener, he became very talkative and outgoing once his confusion left.  A whole new person.  It reminds me of the way my mother was after her first stroke.  He had an MRI last night, and hopes they will have a diagnosis this morning.  I'll drive to the hospital in the van, in case they do release him.

Well, there you are.  A surprise, turning your world upside down, the way sudden sickness does.  I went from being a talker to a listener, from being a convalescent to being in charge.  Will this transform into an emotional storm once we have an answer and he is home?  I don't know.  Right now I feel like myself, an efficient mode I get into if planning a big party or doing a program.  Who knows who either one of us is?

It has helped a great deal to be aware whenever my mind goes to imagining possible futures, like a series of strokes, and to be able to pull it back to the present.  I know from experience that no matter how I try to pin it down conceptually, I have never been able to predict the future.  Just being here is easier when you have lots of things to do and remember, and a book on your Kindle for quiet times. 

Of course, just being here is what we have done in meditation year after year - practice being with the present situation, your breath, your pain or itch etc., practice bringing the wandering mind back from its fantasies.  Okay, that's my lecture.  Meanwhile, off to the lab for my Thursday 10 a.m. blood draw, then to the hospital.

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