Illness precluded a timely response to blogging about something I had lost. Then, the notice to blog about something I have found. Well, since I’ve lost something rather important, but will also find it this year, I’m attempting both.
In October of 2008, I lost my Dignity when my body collapsed in an LDS chapel in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Without prejudice, I think my hourglass looked quite lovely lying on the carpet in my sexy black dance outfit with the black satin four-inch stilettos. After subsequent visits to the emergency room in Libby, the endocrine specialist in Spokane decided that my third brain tumor had become active. Thus, causing adrenal failures or crises.
Granted, the adrenal problem isn’t the only difficulty the tumor causes, but they are, perhaps, the most devastating and dramatic. These events can vary in length and intensity, from slight to impending death as the body shuts down. A shot that I carry in my purse is frequently the difference between that life and death. The humorous side is that I’m unable to administer the shot to myself.
Unfortunately, when the failures occur in public, the body goes down without regard to the location or circumstances. Adrenal crises tend to put you on a very dirty floor. Try sitting on the cement floor of a Wal-Mart sometime, put your nose on the dirt particles, and you will see my view of the store. Or, think about lying on the floor of a grocery store with people staring down at you, the manager thumping your cheek, and cashier who is making bruises on your collarbone to insure that you remain as alert as possible. During that process, your clothing is also acquiring vast amounts of black smudges and grime that will never come out. And, this doesn’t even cover the ambulance people.
I’ve been assisted by the best-looking, the handsomest, the most muscled, and the cutest men of all ages available in Idaho, Washington, and Montana. I’ve been picked up by men who are actually capable, two old men who almost died of heart failure while gagging as if I weighed 200lbs instead of 141, dragged by the butt using a comforter, left on a gurney in the 18F weather outside an ambulance while the drivers went back into the apartment for something, and loaded into an ambulance by a chair from a Church’s foyer.
I’ve gone down in the chapel at my Church and had the shot administered with my skirt up around my neck. The Security Chief at Kalispell’s Wal-Mart administered the emergency shot directly into my hip muscle after jerking my jeans down. I’ve been stuck in either the hip or the upper deep thigh muscle by friends who aren’t nurses, friends who think they are, and strangers who scream as soon as I unzip my jeans. IF I’m able to do anything.
The attacks can be so devastating that I can appear as if having a stroke. In those times, I’m unable to speak for over twenty minutes. Real recovery takes about twenty-four hours, in which I will be bed-ridden after being released to home or being deposited on the bed by some kind stranger.
Nothing ever goes as planned. Consequently, my life is the fodder for not only my sense of humor, but for the many others who laugh with me. I do admit that this adds some excitement to Church, but it is a drag at dances. And, in either situation, doesn’t leave one with much Dignity.
With my eyes out of focus, my brain in a stall, and my body rebelling against all commands, laughter has replaced what little Dignity this Old Woman has ever had. Laughter reigns supreme in my life, even joking with the ER nurses who have just stuck my veins five times without success and are now looking at my feet, or those strangers who are doing their best to rescue this old woman from a dirty floor.
So what did I find? Later this year, death will restore what was lost. I will find my Dignity again in a new life. At least I think so. I’m not aware of any Wal-Marts in the Spirit World.
Causes Lynn Steen Supports
The Slumcode Group, a Community Based Organization, located in the heart of Huruma, a densely populated residential town in Nairobi - Kenya...