It’s been three weeks and a couple of days since my motorcycle accident. And honestly it’s been difficult. Not only has the pain from the break been fairly constant (although thankfully manageable), but the loss of use of the limb has been a huge inconvenience as I’ve previously whined. Jacob has been a tremendous help, as I’ve also mentioned, driving me around and doing things I could not do myself. But being incapacitated like this makes you frustrated and angry…well, makes me frustrated and angry, anyway. I want this to be over with.
Use of the arm has come back surprisingly quickly. Of course, I haven’t exactly followed doctor’s orders when it came to wearing that damned immobilizing sling. But hey, no pain – no gain, right? While I’m not exactly back up to 100%, I can at least tuck my own shirt in now. But I didn’t tell Jacob that, heh-heh.
This morning, as we both were getting ready for the day, I asked him if he’d tuck my shirt in for me on my left-hand side, the one I supposedly cannot reach. His hand was at my waistband, just an inch or so from “going in.” That’s when I casually mentioned, “Oh yeah, I’m going commando* today.” Man, he pulled his arm back like he’d touched a hot burner on the stove. The look on his face was priceless. “Uhhhh…” he said as he stumbled backward. I laughed, and then tucked my own shirt in.
You had to be there.
So Jacob took off today on his own (as yet uncrashed) motorcycle, riding up to Tuscaloosa, Alabama to see his girlfriend for the weekend. He was concerned about leaving, but I assured him I’d be okay.
After he left, I jumped in the car and headed up to our company headquarters in Brewton, Alabama, about an hour north of Pensacola. It’s the first time I’ve been in the car alone in over three weeks. On the way out of town I drove through a weak cold front. There was a little rain, then all of a sudden the rain stopped and it was nice out.
It was great driving by myself again. I cranked up the tunes (extra-loud), and sang along with my favorite Elvis Presley songs. You can’t really do that when you’re driving with someone else, even if they enjoy the exact same type of music as you, which nobody does, let’s be honest. Nobody wants to hear my bad sing-along version of “Burning Love.” (I really have a terrible singing voice, too – thanks, dad!)
Halfway up Highway 29, a strong feeling of exhilaration came over me. Not only had the weather cleared up, but it was like a thick emotional fog was lifting as well. I can steer and operate the turn signals with my left (bad) arm. I felt alive and in control, enabled and energized. Such a small thing, really – dressing and driving yourself to work. But it was, I have to admit, thrilling. I yelled, “I’M BACK, BABY!!” at the top of my lungs. In fact, I even texted that to my friend Matt. Well of course I’m not totally back, but the progress is undeniable. I have not enjoyed feeling like a cripple these past couple of weeks (no offense to any cripples out there).
I suppose it would have been easy to just lie around the house, taking it easy and taking the eight weeks the Emergency Room doctor predicted recovery might take. It would have been easy to let Jacob do all the work with the whiny excuse of, “My arm hurts.” But it wouldn’t have been fair. Not to him, and not to me.
Today, the weather cleared up in more ways than one. I’m feeling like a fully-functioning human again. And I am damn glad. Damn glad. The Brewton Little Theatre is going to have to get someone else to play the one-armed-man in their musical version of “The Fugitive.”
We tentatively have "some flying" to do this weekend, according to the boss. I'll use my usual safety pilot. But it won't be very long at all until I'm ready to take the controls by myself again. I'll tell ya, I'm looking forward to that!
(*Commando = sans undergarments)