Case Closed

I read the email a second time, slowly taking it all in.
We regret to inform you that we don't think we can win your case, so we're closing the file.

It hit me like a wall of bricks. This is the second time they have closed my case, the second time they have decided they can't win. All I have left is to hire my own private lawyer, but that comes at a higher price...if they don't think they can win, why would another lawyer think s/he could? Why can't they win? I did nothing wrong, yet I remain handicapped for life. Is my handicap not enough evidence that something was faulty?

I had physical therapy and an appointment with the neurologist the same day. At physical therapy she told me my strength seems to have regressed. Was I in more pain than usual? Had I done something to tire my muscles out? At the neurologist I was given a final pain medication to try...two more months of medicating myself with all those side effects trying to make living be a pain free experience. Medicated. Not excatly my first choice, naturally, but I'll try it.

But, I was also given two other appointments. One with a revalidation specialist. Someone to help me learn to exist with my handicap. Someone with tools and tips and tricks for functioning as a handicapped individual. Secondly was with a pain management center. Here they take severe measures in helping you to live pain free. Such as, in my case, electro shock therapy to make my pain sensors unable to distinguish pain. My pain nerves will be completely blocked...no more pain...ever, for any reason...no more feeling whatsoever...is this really an option?

I can't say that I am feeling happy with everything that is happening with my hand. I'm not sure I want to try these new therapies, which sound quite permanent and what if I don't like what happens. I just don't know what to feel about it all. Happy to finally be given the option of 'something' that may help, but fearful about what the something is. My neurologist told me he believes I have reached the limit as what improvements I will see in my hand function. It has been a year since the accident...a year since my life was saved, but my hand was not. A year for it to improve...but also a full year...what more can I expect? We're moving onto pain management now, not functional improvement.

And as for the case, to help cover doctors bills and therapy and travel costs and psycologists and medical supplies and me BEING HANDICAPPED FOREVER AND EVER....that's in a constant state with a big red Case Closed stamp across the front page. And it makes me feel like I am unworthy of anything other then being this handicapped piece of a person, collecting bills and costs to further family financial crisis as I peel potatoes worrying about cutting off a finger and don't make stew knowing I can't cut the meat into chunks.

I know I should feel 'lucky', but right now I feel a flop of a mess.


Chicken and Dumpling Brain

I'm feeling a little ADD. I have thoughts, words running through my head, I want to share, but can't. Nothing comes out in anything anyway anyone could understand. I am confused, confusing. I can't get any single thought to cooperate. I say too little in too much.

Chicken and dumplings for dinner. Yum! A whole day boiling that sucker...and tearing it apart...bones, skin, gristle...separate the meat..real meat. By the time I am done, my hands stink and I'm not sure I'll be able to eat a bite...all that ripping apart of that chicken. Cut up some carrots and onions, taste the broth...and the smell filling the house is simply delectable. Can I train my mind to steer clear of the cleaning of the bones? Oh how easy it could be to turn vegetarian. But yet, memories of the last chicken and dumplings make my mouth drip with longing.

How many quarters can make up $5. Seems like a lot, when every time Kaeden gets a quarter removed for unacceptable behavior. Today he left for school with $1,25. $3,75 used up in behavior fees over the course of the weekend. $3,75 worth of moments of anger and aggression of which turns me into a ball of nerves..not to mention the ball of fury papa becomes and the ball of energy Jari rolls into. 20 quarters. 20 chances given to be mean. 15 chances used up. 15 chances in which I have been given a headache, stomachache, and been filled up with worry, sadness, anger, and blame. Yet the $5 is working, on a small scale. 15 chances is better than the 40 we dealt with 3 weeks ago. We don't know what to do. We are at a point of uncertainty...were we ever not? His values have slipped since attending his home away from home. He no longer hears mama and papa's warnings about using those nasty words. He no longer hears us reiterating the proper place for sex. He is with peers, all of whom curse as it's cool, talk about sex cause that's what teenage boys do. But without home to bring it all together, put the priorities straight. Weekends sometimes feel like a little glimpse of hell. But the week no longer holds that tint of black and red. What is best? What do we do? 20 chances, $5 sometimes seems too little, when in reality it's $5, 20 chances too many.

Soccer...passion. The two words go hand in hand. Jari's club moved up a level, meaning we play teams much better than those we played last year. Besides moving up a level, Jari also moved up an age bracket. Put those two together, and we have what we can call a slight disaster. Not that it would have been better staying on with his own team, but our team is not a real team. We don't play together, we are like little individuals all making up this whole that's never a complete whole. I'm concerned that the passion could be removed from the soccer. Losing by 10+ points every game, getting not only beaten but slammed into the ground, and not working together as a real team could take my son's passion and crumble it. I'm not willing to let that happen. So, I am aware and watching, on top of things even as every game leaves me sitting in a pool of frustration. Passion and soccer belong together, hand in hand.

Latvia...a number of days away with my husband. A vacation in every sense of the word...no kids! What struck me was the poor living conditions, in a place filled with soviet influence. The big blocks of homes, people hanging from windows, clothing blowing on balconies. The land is fairly new it's own land, needs time to bring up their standards. In the meantime, people suffer, without knowing they suffer. The people seem happy, content, freedom finally theirs for the taking. Yet in their contentment and freedom, I am able to eat, drink, and be merry on a fraction of the cost I would normally have to pay. Erwin says my visit is bringing in tourism to them, bringing in cash. He is right, of course, but it feels so wrong that I have the chance, the money, the power to take a vacation when that little boy plays in the yard of a home nearly falling to pieces around him. Don't get me wrong, it was a wonderful experiences, so many sights to fall in love with, so much new I never imagined I'd have the opportunity to explore. And I do...I did. Vacation in Latvia...just me and him...perfection within reach.

I examine my friendships. Some people I call friends are not people I would actually consider friend material. They are just here, present, bringing with them the title of friend though they have no other qualities of friend other than physical presence. I get annoyed...with them, yes, but even more with myself. Why do I allow these relationships to continue? It isn't a sharing relationship...one of give and take. It's not like I am acting as a friend should. I wouldn't be my friend if reciprocated. I take, but I take because I have nothing to give. It's not a two way street, but one way with me in front and someone following, trying to catch up, yet never quite making it. I feel devious, a little smart, someone I would never like in real life. I'm not proud of myself, but find this easier than getting out of the relationship. It's beyond time to have a little talk. I'm not sure the talk can save the friendship...if there ever was one.

I read a book. It took me a very long time to read. Often, I dive into a book and don't put it down until I am done, submitting myself, letting it become my reality. I read a book. It took me months to complete, little bits at a time, a page here, a chapter there...never able to allow myself to dive into its reality...but it may have been because it is my reality, every day. Every time I picked up the book, I had to focus on my reality, my life. I was forced to not live as another character in another place and time, fantasizing, but think of my own situation which was often mirrored in the pages of the book. I plan to write more about this experience, when my words aren't so stifled, my mind so scattered. It was a wonderful book, a lovely story, and very true to autism and parenting an autistic child. The thoughts and feelings. Yet it didn't allow me to have those "Calgon, take me away" moments. It was a learning experience in the pages of a novel...fantasy and reality all wrapped up in one. Interesting! Thank you, Tanya.

I have more...much more...but the chicken and dumplings are bubbling just like the words in my head. Ready to spill over onto a clean surface and evaporate into a mess...this is it, this is life.