I told you yesterday that this has been a horrifyingly isolating experience. Well, the Lord knew it would be – He saw my need from afar off and planned to give me a friend for life at RIO (3rd Hospital). I’ve mentioned M before – I wrote 185. Poster Child about a year ago when she emailed me bc her neighbors are friends of mine from my Oregon church and during the course of conversation they figured out we were there at the same time. Side note: she’s “Molly” in ch. 12 of my Memoirs. Both her husband and mother remarked that this was the first time they had ever seen me stand or walk. This was not the first time I saw M in motion. Even by the end of our time at RIO she was gliding around in a way that completely appalled me. She is still my model of mobility.
We were both not really lucid at RIO, and we had never been properly introduced. I just showed up in her room one day bc I figured out how to move my wheelchair on my own and I thought I was “supposed” to be nice to her and her husband in order to advance to the next level of the video game I was trapped in mentally. PS. Thanks for being so gracious and not throwing me out even though I was a complete stranger. Sorry, M, but if the tables had been turned I would have totally thrown you out. Turns out she had some interesting theories regarding the whole hospital experience, too, and the only reason they are hysterically funny to me is bc she shares them with great good humor and bc I had similarly outrageous theories of my own.
The one part of my OR trip I looked forward to without mixed feelings was seeing M again. I was not disappointed. Everyone says we are alike – our philosophy of Rehab participation was the same (M: Hey, we were entertaining.), and now that we are cognitively “with it”we both know we are like minded in many ways – especially the really important ones. I also told her that I thought her husband J was nice in the hospital (he and M’s dad were the witnesses on my court /guardianship documents) but “now that I’m lucid” he’s a rockstar!
We also had a lovely frozen yogurt date with our Moms. M and I were over getting fro yo (she handled the motor skill portions/carrying) and I turned around and saw our mothers talking in the corner. “Hey, M, look,” I hissed, “They’re commiserating.”
As much as M and I have to talk about regarding hospitalization and recovery, our mothers have lots of notes to compare regarding managing their adult children who needed them desperately but had trouble knowing it at the time.
M asked recently if I was going to be up for a lifelong sort of friendship. You are so nice! I told her. I wasn’t even going to ask you. FYI you’re locked in for life, M.
One more thing: I had been planning to try and get in touch w M when my book was published. It was a mental milestone I looked forward to since I had been talking to her in my head and in my dreams since we came home. 6 months beforehand, though, an email from her surfaced in my inbox. I cried like a baby when I realized who it was. I wanted to talk to her so badly but at that point it was just a “want” that I was not capable of articulating into a prayer request. In the end, though, I didn’t have to lift a finger. God brought her to me.