The Expanse and the Atlantic Revisited


November 19, 2019

I will be first to admit my recovery posts have lacked a positive outlook as of late. There have been so few gains over the last three months, so when I spoke the word “plateaued,” in my previous blog entry, I was consenting to the idea that I was not going to get much better. I had been beaten.

When people ask me, “how are you doing?” I’ve tried to explain that some days are better than others. Well, today has been one of those better days. Today might be the most important day since I put away the wheelchair.

After arriving at work and saying hello to everyone, I sat down at my desk and made a decision. I was not going to use my cane until lunchtime. Practically speaking, this was not the right choice. The last time I crossed “the expanse” ( the space between my office and the main office), I got distracted and fell. I’ve grown weary of falling, so risking that is not something I relish. Nevertheless, I made that crossing at least four times before attempting to cross “the Atlantic” (the space between my office and the men’s restroom).

With cane in hand but not touching the floor, I set out to take those 50 steps or so (I am taking smaller steps than most). If someone would’ve been watching me, I probably would have been unable to take more than a few steps. I was overjoyed when I reached the bathroom door. I thought to myself, “You did it!” and that reality gave me the confidence to walk back to my office at a quicker pace.

Once back at my desk, I changed my mind about using the cane after lunch. I made the decision not to use it at all while I was in the office building. When leaving this evening, I walked to the doors and then planted the cane on the ground and congratulated myself on a job well done. I’m quite sure that I will sleep hard tonight. When I see my neurologist tomorrow, she will ask, “how are you doing?” and I will answer her with a more positive outlook.

I’ve learned to do numerous things that are handy with a cane. I guess I will have to learn to live without it.

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