It’s been a wild year, with the notion that I’d pick up a new language and impress the folks at Single Speed Worlds in Hakuba Japan.
But on August 3rd, while still cramming at Middlebury Language School, I got a call that Charlie’d had a crash, and had broken 7 or 8 bones. Nothing was made of his head injury, so when I came home, I was a bit in the dark about the subdural hematoma lurking upstairs in his fine mind.
He went from crutch to handmade cane to easy walking, and I was lulled into thinking I could carry out my plan of going to Japan.
Fortunately I brought my computer, and checked me email. I didn’t have a cell phone, but perspicacious Wombats Carolyn V. found a way to reach me and summon me home through this blog.
I found Charlie on life support, but he was able to squeeze my hand (showing he was not a ….er….vegetable is the uncool word, but that was what I was worried about).
Now it’s three months since that awful September 20th, and so much has transpired…much of the news was transmitted thanks to Caroline James of BigMango, who created a funding site for Charlie. The success has been awe-inspiring. Caroline’s partner Dave Garoutte has been Charlie’s welding wing-man, CNC wizard (back when there were hundreds of orders for this or that invention) and general wise guy whose practical, no-nonsense perspective helps me keep on track.
We ‘re settling into a new normal, and an unnervingly unbusy Charlie. When I’m typing here, he sits quietly on the couch. He never makes a demand (when he does, I’ll be very happy), for that implies executive function, which is glaringly absent.
I’m trying my hand at list-making (his strong suit, along with Fixing Everything Jacquie Breaks) and…day-planning. Very strange.
I’ve always been the Keeper of the feminine traditions–cooking, sewing, and hamhanding delicate stuff so Charlie can analyse how Mere Mortals can mangle a bicycle component, invention, or whatever. I get to “ruination” quicker than anyone.
These days, we BOTH knock things over, and have relied on a tight network of his old buddies to fix things…
I’m hanging the old stockings I made for us a few years ago–note the little hammer and golden wrench on Charlie’s stocking.
Mine features childhood friend Katrina Alef’s lavish embroidery. I have asked Santa Claus to bring back Charlie’s sense of direction/orientation–one of the two things that haven’t bounced back–the other being the ability to recognize letters and printed material. Oh, yes, and vision, balance…er…there are a few stocking stuffers I’ll be awaiting.
Doctors don’t seem to make prognoses about Traumatic Brain Injury. Instead they intone: “the brain has an amazing ability to adapt and reconfigure….but it will take years.” Now that’s something I will need to have put in my stocking.