Susan Speaks: Seven


This was my horoscope this morning, from lasting success is achieved by taking small steps again and again until you reach your goal.

We’re at seven weeks post-accident, six weeks post-retinal reconstruction. Nothing new to report. The nitrous oxide in my eye… still there. Over the weekend, it spawned two little pearls, one each day, that hung out on the outer rim of the bubble before finally dissolving around mid-afternoon. I was hopeful it was the start of the final end, but… no go. No Son of Bubble this morning.

The problem with long injuries is that the people who rush to your aid at the beginning have forgotten about you. Their lives go back to normal; they’ve done their duty, showing up with a meal. Now, of course, this is a blanket statement, but last week, I went eight solid days without leaving the house. I didn’t need anything at the grocery, so there was no need to ask for a lift anywhere, so… I didn’t. And no one dropped in to say, “Hey, what have you been doing? Have you gotten out at all?”

By Saturday, I was climbing the walls. And it was in the fifties and sunny. I texted my BFF: If I don’t get out of this house, I am going for a bike ride.

He was on my driveway in ten minutes, and I spent the day with him, running his kids around and hanging out. (For those of you not in the know, I routinely help run their kids around. Two parents, four kids, lots of activities, and his wife, one of my other BFFs, is often out of town. The kids are like my own, and I love all six of ’em. No, not six kids. Six in the family.)

My own kids came home from a weekend with their dad. As soon as she got in the house, the girl inspected my eye. She proclaimed it less bloody and open wider. I asked if that meant the swelling was down; one of the BFF’s neighbors, who I used to work out with at the Hoity Toity Health Club, stopped in to pick up her son and said until she was close, she couldn’t tell anything was funky, other than I was wearing my glasses.

That’s progress. Maybe it means an end to the weird, almost-horrified looks I’d get when I’d go out.

I’m not complaining!

Small steps, like my horoscope said. It’s only taken seven weeks to get this far.

But the big one came later that evening, as we were cleaning up from dinner. It was the girl again, telling me that I seemed different. Less sick or injured. More energetic. More myself.

Thinking about it, I have to agree. As restlessness was conquered, as I’ve been able to get outside, either to sit on the deck or to take a short walk (and I promise, it’s short! Nothing like the prospect of losing your vision after you’ve fought seven weeks to save it to keep me from not pulling a Typical Susan and overdoing), as I got out of the house, I could feel it all settling back into place.

But the gas is still in my eye, which means I’m still not allowed to drive. I may be stuck inside all week again, and that’s a prospect I’m less at peace with.

Here’s your words of wisdom: when your friends and family have a long rehab, don’t forget about them. Sometimes, the farther out a person is from the trauma, the more they need you.


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