On my way to Idaho

On my way to Idaho
The Road Less Traveled . . .

Friday, September 10, 2010


I woke up this morning to a strange (non)sensation. It took a few minutes of luxuriating in that place between sleeping and waking to identify what I wasn't feeling.

No pain! No phantom pain. - And what a nice way to start my day.

With in the hour - having gotten up and made ready for the day the pain did return. It is generally at a constant 'buzz' of a 2 to 4 on the happy face chart doctors use to identify pain levels.

Pain is such a subjective thing - I mean no one else feels what I feel, likewise I am unable to experience another person sensations, pain or otherwise. Does pain really exist? What is identified as 'pain' by one person might not be by another. What does 'pain' mean? Of course, there is a framework of agreement that takes for granted certain things equate with 'pain.' No one (excerpt a few idiots I've met) dispute with me when I say I am in pain--the metal leg does all the arguing for me.

OK, I'll stop here. I tend to wander off into existentialist musings quite frequently. I just wanted to consider for a moment the deliciousness of not feeling . . . which is provoking even more sense/non-sense musings (Ludwig W. where are you?). Enough of that ;-D.

For a few minutes this morning I positively lolled about in a delicious sense of wholeness - simultaneously energizing and relaxing. In the practical sense I am very pleased. It means the nerves and the neuropathy in the amputated limb are healing and that long months of exercising and therapies are really working. This means there is hope for a pain free furtre.

In a bigger sense (sorry can't stay away from the philosophical musings, Marilyn says I was born this way-- it's blessing and a curse), The thought occurred to me that perhaps we, as in human kind, are missing out on untold opportunities to experience and share Joy.

Let see if I can explain: I have always felt that one is responsible for finding/identifying/recognizing, even creating one's own experiences of Joy in life. My 'non-sense' experience with pain this morning put me in a state of realizing the 'sense' of Joy for myself; however fleeting. Non-sense is another way of 'naming' something that is unknown, possibly unknowable; i.e. is there a name/label/term for 'no-pain'? I'm too lazy to bestir myself to examine a dictionary just now, but, I can't think of such a word. The state of being or act of being with out pain is exactly that a state, act, and/or experience with out sense, o,r outside of sense - non-sense, an unnamed possibly unnamable concept . The act of embracing this unknown for a few minutes this morning opened up room for 'sense', in this case an experience with Joy, that could not have happened otherwise.

I guess what I am getting at is sort of a "less is more" argument. Our hands and arms and heads and hearts are overworked with the task of holding onto things/ideas/experiences that we use to make 'sense' of who we are, what we do and why, and how we live. Are many of these things crutches? probably, and definitely should be used when one is crippled; but what if we are so busy holding on the these things that we don't recognize healing is happening. We can put down the crutches and embrace 'non-sense' instead.

Using my experience this morning as an example - a little bit of 'non-sense' is easier to embrace and goes miles further then ten times the things we use to make sense.

Don't know if my raving here stand up to critical examination; regardless, the luxury of Joy was/is mine today!

Interestingly, in the midst of enJOYing my 'non-sense' moments this morning I remembered that nine months ago today my brother Earl died and I miss him very much.

And THAT, is a quite another discourse on sense and non-sense; pain and joy; and is best saved for another day--I'm yet to be able to tease the two apart in this instance.

* * *

Back to my reading - the final text I need for the term just arrived in the mail - and I have several hundred pages of reading to do.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Beauty in Suffering

"We misunderstand how beautiful suffering can be - I don't willingly sign up for it - when it comes we forget God is in control and God has a way of making the miserable thing beautiful"
 - Gianna Jessen

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

A Long Day

Yes. It been a long day and feels even longer. But, not in a necessarily bad way. Just evry tired and a little frustrated that my energy doesn't carry me through the day. In RPG terms, life rolled me a low Con. score, and in real life ,experience points don't always boost your score.

I'm trying to keep in mind that my basic focus for the blog is how I adapted to everyday life as an amputee. What does that mean?

Well, to start with, I have to plan an extra 30 to 45 minutes every morning to get ready.  The extra time is needed to give a little TLC to the stump. The prosthesis is cleaned and I quickly check it over for signs of mechanical failure. After donning the leg I walk around a few minutes to make sure of a good fit. Putting the leg on and off can  add up to 30 minutes on a good day, as much as an hour if I need to make adjustments during the day. 

Any who -  my day - two classes totaling seven and half hours; lunch and a hour of study did find a place between them. I made it and I'm exhausted.

Good times.

My class notes are a form of my own personal hieroglyphs - today they included a sketch of the teacher, Tammi. Look to the right  - there she is under My Hieroglyphs.