I tried concentrating on writing a lot this week and I honestly have no idea how to make it work with life. I wrote a page and a half story (I am a total newbie at writing short stories, and have just started reading some by Lorrie Moore, which are really good/interesting) and as a result, many things went by the wayside.
There’s this voice in my head saying unless I have something helpful or meaningful to say in the world, I should just be taking care of things here at home (i.e., the garden is a fricking weed-fest right now) and living. Spending time writing just feels like a selfish personal indulgence. As for this “living,” I think of all the experiences one could be having, like hiking, traveling, doing good deeds. I heard on a webinar about resilience that helping others is one of the best ways to recover from a life crisis. Kinda puts things in perspective. I just have no idea when to do it, IF I’m going to keep writing and trying to hang with the NWs a bit to keep learning. This is why people sleep less, but I know from all we’ve gone through with Doug just how dangerous that is (lack of sleep is a contributor to strokes and poorer recovery).
So yeah, here I am writing this morning again when I might be mowing or weeding or volunteering. I think most people must start blogs and just go gangbusters for a while and then…life. Chores. Work. Family. Holidays. Sickness. Other creative pursuits. Maybe if we didn’t have this house and all these animals it would be different. People with kids…I am baffled how they function.
Meanwhile, speaking of perspective, we watched a movie called “Murderball” about quad (or wheelchair) rugby that Doug’s Feldenkrais teacher recommended. It’s 10 years old now, and was focused on the Paralympics rivalry between the U.S. and Canadian teams, as well as small bios of several of the U.S. players. People end up in wheelchairs for many reasons, everything from car or motocross accidents to blood diseases and polio. I didn’t know that the extent of paralysis for a quadriplegic varies depending on how high on their spine the break takes place. Many of them recover a fair amount of arm and hand use, while others are more limited. How much of their upper body they can use is one of the main factors of the game – teams are formed to utilize a variety of abilities on the court as they spin, roll around and crash into each other in specially retrofitted chairs. These chairs look like war machines, armor-plated and dented, nothing like a regular one.
One of the most interesting parts for me was when one of the guys said that for the first couple of years after their injuries, most people are convinced they’re going to get out of their wheelchairs and walk again. When they realize they likely won’t, it’s that turning point of, now what? Keep on living or give up? I think the hardest part for most of them, and I’ve seen this in our lives too, is coming to grips with a time before they lost use of those limbs and all they used to do. Somehow being able to let go of that former self and life, and move on to what this new life can offer is pivotal. Doug and I talk about reinvention a lot, how hard it is.
I couldn’t get over how fiercely these guys were not just living, but competing. Nothing was slowing them down. The guy who had lost part of his arms and legs to a childhood disease was living independently and doing everything at home just fine, in addition to playing rugby competitively. This was a really good and inspiring thing for us to see and I highly recommend it.
Okay, putting writing aside for this day, the yard awaits. Plus, my battery’s almost dead.