Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Things I Take for Granted

Last week I injured my wrist badly enough to require surgery. I'd love to share the details, but my father reads this and I must protect his poor tummy. So long story short, I cut my wrist and damaged the medial nerve. The medial nerve controls the thumb, index finger, and half the middle finger. I have no feeling in my thumb and index finger and I am currently sporting a cast. To say the least, I am not comfortable.

The hospital trip was interesting if not a bit humorous. In triage every time I said "I cut my wrist" the inevitable question that followed was "on purpose?" Nichole and I both lost count of how many times I was asked to repeat the details. Each new attendant in ER, or later in my room, had to ask. It is procedure, I know, but being aware of why they asked so many times gave me the giggles...well maybe that was the morphine.

I was whisked into surgery at the crack of dawn, six hours ahead of schedule. I don't remember being transferred to the table, but at some point I was aware of crying and telling them how much it hurt. I was also aware the nurse several times loudly ordered me to "breathe" or "Maria! Maria! remember to breathe!" No one said I'd actually stopped breathing in such to be problematic, but since I have no reference to time I couldn't say.

Surgery is past and I am back at work - full time; half as productive. In the course of a week I have compiled a list of things I take for granted.

In the category of life skills:
  • opening doors while holding a cup of coffee
  • showering in general, shampooing specifically
  • drying off sufficiently to dress
  • buttoning my jeans
  • pulling up my jeans
  • tying shoes
  • removing wrappers
  • cutting my food
  • buttering my bread
In the category of work and school
  • typing fluidly
  • stapling a neat stack
  • paperclips
  • rubberbands
  • cutting
  • separating continuous feed orders
  • holding phone while writing
There are many more inconveniences both at home and at work. But that is the key...they are simply inconveniences. Once the cast is off there will be a host of new issues to deal with. Some will be issues like the ones above, but with a twist. I will inevitably try to hold something and not feel it. I will have learn to test temperatures before grabbing and such. But the beauty of it all is that I will learn.

What have I learned is that I'm not an artist. No matter how hard I try, I have no skills to that end. I cannot draw or paint and I most certainly can't carve without injury. Instead, I can write; and with exception of writers cramp and creative blocks, I can do so safely.

And I can hug! Thanks for that reminder Jen.