Monday, July 21, 2014

"Oh the Places You'll Go!...for 30 Year Olds"

Do you ever think that it’s the people around you who make you sane?  Part of this sounds completely cliché, but the other part has toyed with me a bit lately.  When you are alone, and certainly if you also happen to live alone, you talk to yourself…your inner monologue is in a state of constant chatter, and while I have jokingly said in the past that people should get inside my mind for a second and just take a look around…I’m serious!!  There is some CRAZY "S"  going on here!!!  When you don’t have to filter anything for anyone else’s sake…you should HEAR what goes on in here!!  Sometimes its beautiful, sometimes its horrifying, sometimes it’s both, and lets not forget the downright hilarious…there’s a whole red-roped VIP section in the back for that!  Without having as many people around, and left to my own devices, I hear my voice loud and clear as I am trying to make decisions,  and what a fickle bitch she is!  I suppose this is also a realization of how much of a verbal processor I am, but with that option somewhat less accessible to me…it’s me and my thoughts…and what can I say?...I’m a dreamer. 

I am trying to figure out my next steps in life (No lie, I actually just heard “Highway to the Danger Zone” playing in my head), and that looks different to me from day to day.  The rational side of me will bring me back and tell me to stick to what I know, but the other part is absolutely running amuck with possibilities.  You can’t turn it off!  At least, I can’t.  Without someone else’s noise to trump my own…this thing just plays on repeat ! I try on ideas like musical chairs, only in this club, the music never stops!

This brings me to quite an impasse.   Having all of these different chairs to try out, the music never stopping, and me not knowing which one is the “right” chair for me.

I have always had a moral compass that just inherently knows what the “right” thing to do is.  That may sound self-righteous, but nevertheless, it’s proven to  be mostly true.  I think this is where I should thank my parents (shoutout James and Midge!) and while we’re at it, I’d like to thank the Hollywood Foreign Press as well.  (I’m not sure they had anything to do with it, but it seems like something everyone should try out once in their life.)  Anyway, back to the “right” thing to do--  Regardless of how uncomfortable a truth that might be, 9 times out of 10 I know what it is, and my brain/conscience will NOT let me take any other route…or if it does…if I figure out a way to circumvent the system and play ring-around-the-rosy with wrongdoing, it is only a matter of time before I will inevitably be brought back to apologize, and go pick all the toilet paper out of The Davis’ trees.  That damn compass always wins. 

It also seems though that the lines between right and wrong become increasingly blurred as we age.  It’s not as easy to discern the difference.  Life is more complex—more factors involved, more shades of grey.  I think being such a black and white person is part of what has protected my innocence in lots of ways….most people start seeing the shades of grey earlier on, the lines blur a bit sooner.  I’m a bit late to the party, as it were, which is why I am just seeing some shades of grey now that I actually have some!  (Yes, my single grey hair has been reproducing (asexually, I’m hoping) at a surprisingly rapid rate! ) Just for that, I’m reclaiming that “Thirty, flirty, and thriving” catch phrase to “Thirty, Dirty, but Trying” (dirty meaning by this point, you’ve had the chance to fall on your face in some area of life by now).

Anyway, this is the current state of things: that I can usually rely on that compass to help instruct my next steps, but I don’t know what that looks like for me right now.  Which brings me back to being a dreamer…

What’s wrong with dreaming?  I’ve always been a big proponent of the “life’s too short” mentality, because it’s at least partially true.  People have different definitions of what it looks like to live life to the fullest, and different priorities that instruct what it means to live with purpose, but whoever you are, whatever you’re doing, your life is saying something.  Whether it’s saying what you want it to say may be a different story.  All the more reason to figure out what that is, and try to pursue it.   So… I’m trying…   Yep.  Thirty … almost.  Dirty … a little bit.  Trying … absolutely.

Monday, June 30, 2014

If At First You Don't Succeed...Wait 5 Minutes...The Truth of it is, for Better for Worse: Everything Changes

AH! The title is so true!!!  Now, don't get me wrong, it's not like the world got flipped on it's ear last night --but it is true that tomorrow is a new day.  And you actually have a pretty big role to play in what kind of day you are setting yourself up for, but we'll get to that in a minute.  

You know, so many times, one of my biggest frustrations in life is transiency.  Especially for those of us 20-somethings, where your life is in a constant state of change: leaving home to go to college, moving for a job, getting married, having babies, watching your friends do those things , etc.  I'm sure change is always a part of the deal to an extent, but surely dampened some in later decades, if by nothing else than learning how to better deal with it.  But, all of those times I have really wrestled with (ok, borderline hated) all of the change and transiency, because I was holding on to something good.  Now that I'm facing some fairly basic yet emotionally significant challenges on a daily basis, all I can say is thank goodness for transiency!!!  haha  Thank goodness for some things, whether emotion or circumstance are short lived.  I JUST had this realization the other day, and found it ironic since I left Dallas telling myself I needed to figure out a way to embrace the transiency of life.  I think those were my exact words, actually...  Anyway, long story short...I'm learning...

You know, earlier I mentioned   "emotional significance."  This is something I've given some thought to recently...the idea that we create meaning.  There are many things that to someone else, are insignificant.  Or the meaning terminates of the thing itself.  And then there is the flip side...creating significance to something and letting it affect your life based on the weight you gave it.  This is heavy stuff for someone like me who sees (and heavier yet, feels) that everything is significant.  You can insert an infinite number of examples in here, but I'll spare you all since I have already trekked on this tangent.  There's plenty more where this came from, but I really should save my strength for some future posts.  haha

Without wasting all my brainpower on one blog post, I'll circle back around to what I said in the into about you having some say in what kind of day you are going to have.  The idea that happiness is a choice.  I dig that, I buy that.  It's all about perspective, perception, priority...all things that I am learning A TON about on this new journey.
Have you watched the documentary "Happy?"  It brings up an interesting fact that people think you can't measure happiness, but then, our society has done extensive research on objectively measuring are we missing?  And isn't that in itself saying something about the way we think as a society, that we have focused so much on depression: causes, symptoms, how to fix it....why does it seem so crazy to focus on happiness?  And why does it seem more far fetched to think that this is something that we have a say in and aren't just victims of our circumstance?
In this documentary, they presented some stats that I thought were interesting.  It said that 50% of our happiness is based on our genes.  That we have a "set range" that we tend to operate within.  Their research found that 10% of happiness was dictated by circumstance: job, finances, age, social status, health, etc. which is also fairly surprising as these are the things that we, as a society, use as measuring sticks of our happiness.  So what is the other 40%, you ask?  Intentional activity: things you choose to do to be happier.  And that is essentially the premise of the film.  Very interesting, thought provoking for sure.

I added some photos!!!  The landscape out here really is beautiful.  


a panoramic picture of the Blue Ridge Parkway (amazing!!)

The swing I cam across on a hike at Howard's Knob....a mountain that overlooks the city of Boone (which is where I call home for these 6 weeks).  All of the mountains around here that you can hike are called "something Knob."  ... If you can get past the obvious humor, it really is a nice place to go and enjoy nature.  So, I drove to the top of said Knob, walked into the trees a little way and there is, what would be an amazing view of Boone!  The day I went, it was so overcast, everything just faded to white.  I could actually see the fog drift past me as I sat on a rock that looked out to the white abyss. So cool.  Then I came across this swing, right on the edge of the cliff, like you might be able to imagine flying or base jumping or something off this thing before being rescued by the physics of pendular motion.  Pretty sweet.  It also rained that day, and it was awesome to be so deep into the trees, that I could hear the rainfall, but because the canopy was so thick, I was keeping dry.  Nature's secret.  
Who knew?!
Doesn't do it justice.  But the sky is always doing cool things around here

I have much more to say, but...gotta keep some reserves in the tank.  What I will say, since it's mostly good friends and family reading this anyhow, is how thankful I am to have a support system that transcends geography!!  You guys have been awesome--I would have been back home sucking my thumb a long time ago if it weren't for you guys (ok, maybe I'm doing that some anyway, but at least Im doing it in Boone, haha)  You guys are great.  Thanks for all of your encouragement and support.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

I Came, I Saw, I Traveled...OK Now Take Me Home

Well, well, well...hello old friends! Been dormant for the last few years, but...I'm reviving this thing, moreso as therapy for me, but I'd love for you to play along! Lord knows Im living the truth of the "no man is an island" adage.

So, I'm traveling. I left a job I loved in Dallas for the life of a nomad. I left security, for insecurity. The known for the unknown. Why?? I'm still figuring that out... My reasons for leaving my job and leaving Dallas were really some double edged swords. The things that were great were ironically enough, the things that were also debilitating. Honestly, I loved my job, loved what I did, and felt I was good at it. Turns out that can be a deadly combination for a singleton who was more than willing to find identity in work. As time went on, it took it's toll, and realized that it was hard to have any physical or emotional energy left at the end of the day to pour into other hobbies, friends, relationships that I wanted to. There just wasn't enough room. I thought about things and people and clients at work so much...there was no more room in the more space on the iceberg... Couple that with the dicey question of "Why are you in Dallas?" and I was in trouble. I was in Dallas because I never left. Yes, there are things I loved...and still, things I love (shoutout to my people), in Dallas, but those came later, after I was there. There was no draw to Dallas for me initially, and I've always thought life is too short not to live someplace beautiful. Maybe that's because I grew up in Midland, TX (google image that trash), but there are so many gorgeous places in the world to live in the proverbial armpit of any state. Ok fine, maybe Midland is like the knee pit or the elbow wenus or something, but you get what I'm saying. So...I decided to travel...out to see the world, out to try on new cities, out to free up some of "the clench" that got its claws into me for a second.

 WORK! What a dirty mistress! Don't get me wrong, work is good, but when did our culture become SO much about her? It's in our thoughts, our conversations, our identities, it affects our day, our mood, our security, our relationships...sometimes, and for many people, moreso than the things that should be filling up that space in our heads and our hearts. Life is about more. There is so much you miss with your nose to the grindstone. And we put the responsibility on ourselves...we make it seem like the world WILL end if we don't do this or finish that TODAY!! "I have to work late, I'm swamped here" all the while someone who loves you and wants part of you is back-burnered for the filthy mistress who tells you that everything and everyone else will just have to wait. ME FIRST!! The whore...

 Ok, now that that's over...hahaha man, I sound bitter!! Like I said, this is just therapy for me. Don't freak out, or mail me a 90 day supply of Zoloft just yet. I'll turn this around. So... packed, sold, and stored all my crap and took out for North Carolina! Landed outside of Charlotte, and had a great time. Hiking, biking, kayaking, whitewater rafting, the great outdoors, SO beautiful!!! What a great breath of fresh air!! I have a ton of stories from this time, but I'll have to save those for another day (it'll be a funnier post, I promise).

 What was I even talking about anyway...????... ... ... Let's just cut to the chase then...this post has rambled on and been hum drum enough (esp for the rekindling of the revolution). An unexpected set of circumstances lead me to take a job in Boone, NC (you know why is sounds like the Boonedocks? Because IT IS!!! Don't get me wrong, its gorgeous here...but I can get to work without going through a single stop light if that tells you anything) . Strolled into town, realized there are really just the two main streets in this town, and have setup shop here for the next 6 weeks. I am working at a skilled nursing facility--today was my first day--and despite my initial shock, horror, and just plain freak out...I think it's gonna be all right. :) First day antics included getting peed on, as well as a colossal toilet clog (caused by me but not by my bowels). Thank God for framily, is all I can say. You cats really pulled me through. Good friends following up, making contact, praying, sending flowers, and then of most notable mention is Momma Midge flying in, cape in the wind behind her, and chicken souped my soul. Humpty Dumpty is back on the wall...and the view is still lookin pretty good. More to come...

Friday, September 3, 2010

Minor Miracles and Miraculous Movements

Today at work, while I was therapizing using all my best moves, a chaplain (from Nigeria I think?) poked his head in on my treatment session. The patient I was working with talked to him for a moment and had nothing but praises coming out of her mouth--a truly grateful woman. The chaplain asked her if he could pray with her, to which she agreed, and he invited me to pray with them. So the bird's eye picture looks like me, the patient, and the chaplain: the three of us alone in a hospital room all with heads bowed as he prayed over both of us by name. Very cool experience. Highlight of my day. Even better that despite only 3 people being in the room, we were as diverse as three could be: young and old were represented, male and female, white and black, able bodied and disabled, American, and African, and African American. :) It was lovely. Praise God for moments like this. Feels like humanity at its best.

This is a past story but worth mentioning under the heading of 'miraculous.' Watched a woman walk with no assistance other than a walker, who just a few months ago was considered a paraplegic. When I first met her, she had no movement in her legs--I'm not talking a flicker, Im not talking not much movement to speak of...I'm talking nothing. One morning she woke up and was just able to walk. She said she had been having dreams about being able to walk for the past couple of weeks, so when she felt her legs moving, she thought she was dreaming, and that when she woke up, she would find herself paralyzed again. This is quite possibly the best 'reality check' ever.

Another patient of mine is a young guy who, during his time with me in inpatient had zero movement in his legs until the last few weeks he was with me, and he started getting a tiny quad contraction, but not enough to do much with. Certaintly not anything functional. He discharged in May. Saw him a few weeks ago, and he is up and walking: a full lap around the floor with some measly little forearm crutches. He looked amazing--I couldn't believe it.

Another one of my patients who was hit by a car going highway speed, started his rehab stay with movement in his neck and shoulders, and some biceps, but nothing else. No triceps, no hand function, no abs, no leg movement. Saw him last week, and he was able to kick both legs out straight. He told me he'd be up and walking before I knew it...who am I to doubt him?

One of my patients just got off a ventilator. He is a quadriplegic with no other movement other than his neck and he has the ability to shrug his shoulders. A few weeks go by, and we notice he has a flicker of movement in his bicep. Victory. Another couple of weeks go by, and while I am helping him sit up on the edge of the bed, I notice his hand moving a bit. Could be a spasm, I thought, but why not check... "Mr. XYZ, turn your hand over so you're palm is facing up." Without hesitation, my man goes palm up. "How about the other side?" Boom. Palm up. This is huge. Seems tiny, right? But the implications of this are huge. This could mean he might be able to feed himself one day, this could mean he might be able to drive his wheelchair with a joystick instead of driving with his head, this could mean he has a way to initiate holding his wife's hand. Something that seems so small, but can have a huge impact on someone's life.

This job is a constant reminder of all the things we able bodies take for granted. Count your blessings--they really are endless.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

0 Antics, 1 Shananigan, and LOTS of rambling...

"Ho! Ho! Ho! And a bottle of rum!" Hello again everyone! Right, right, I hear you....I've been a sheisty blogger--AWOL, MIA, and all those other military acronyms. Speaking of military acronyms, who here knew that "snafu" was spelled this way and is in fact, another military acronym?! All this time, I've been thinking it was "snafoo" with a definition that you could only find in something analagous to Booth's Abridged Book of Balderdash. But it's real...just like ligers.

I've been wondering when people read blogs if they read it in the voice of the author (since, generally, people only read the blogs of people they know), or if they put their own spin on it. It kind of makes me wish you could just do a voice recording or narration of your own blog because comedic timing is everything and storytelling is a talent. Who's with me??

Yesterday I was doing family training with one of my patients and we were practicing transfers. The patient is sitting at about chair height, and she is on her way back to her wheelchair. I have positioned myself squatting down in front of her, and her adoring husband watches intently from the sidelines. On her way back to her chair, she loses her balance and reaches for me to catch her. Well, I caught her alright, or better yet, she caught me: her hand landed right smack dab in the middle of my boob. I'm not talking accidental boob graze, I'm not talking she kinda sorta got it and it was a little awkward...I am talkin' I just got felt up in the middle of family training. I tried to breeze past it, and all things considered, I think I earned a Purple Heart in Professionalism, but my patient couldn't resist the urge to talk it out and tell other staff members who entered her room that she had just "fondled Kaylea's funbags." All in a days work, ladies and gentlemen.

Just to keep you posted on future shananigans, I have made a verbal agreement to do a 5k on a handcycle with a friend of mine who I lovingly refer to as "Hot Wheels." I'm pretty excited about it, despite the fact that this will be taking 'Weekend Warrior-dom" to a whole new level, not to mention that the likelihood of me coming out with some serious rotator cuff tendonitis seems inevitable. Who knew I'd turn out to be a such a wheelchair using wannabe? I am still very much enamored by the wheelchair using community, and I don't see my interest waning anytime in the foreseeable future. THOSE are the people who should be writing blogs!! I'll letcha know how it goes...

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Operation "Weekend in a Wheelchair"

Sunday night, so much to reflect on--it has been quite a weekend. I'm thankful that I had the chance to conduct this little experiment, and I have a clearer picture of a lot of things, and some new questions as well. Here's a recap of my weekend in a wheelchair...

Ok, the first question everyone asks is "Did you cheat?" So let me be up front with you: I "cheated" on things that, were I truly a wheelchair user, I would have modified. These things include carrying the chair up the stairs to my 2nd story apartment (see story below), standing up in the shower due to lack of a shower chair, and standing up to reach hangers in my closet and into the washer/dryer. If I were legitimately spending that much time in the chair, I would have my closet accessible and a front loading washer/dryer. Everything else, I did as legitely (that's right) as I could.
Another quick caveat to my weekend experience is that I "cheated" by using my abs/having trunk control to accomplish things. I tried to make everything as realistic as possible, but when the muscles are there and they still work, there's just no way to completely turn them off. Enough prefacing, let's do this already...

My weekend began with a rude awakening upon entering my apartment. Who knew carpet was my worst enemy? I knew it wasn't going to be smooth sailin, but crap...I had it out with that nasty fluff all weekend!! Next snafoo was the the kitchen. I couldn't turn around in it, so I either had to back myself in, or go in forward but take the long way to get out. My kitchen is so tight that i couldn't open the pantry door more than about a foot unless I used some real trickery, and to add insult to pretend injury, we stash our cereal on the top shelf. ...I might have cheated there, too. Let's face it, I needed my Wheaties.
Next stop was the bathroom. Aside from carpet, I daresay the bathroom is the bane of a wheelchair user's existence. I couldn't fit through the door, so I transferred (via scooting) to a rolling desk/office chair and wheeled into the bathroom that way. If you had any notions about how hard it is to propel a wheelchair on high pile carpet, try it in a desk chair. I practically had veins popping out of my arms and my fingers in a permanent bear paw position after clawing my way into the tile bathroom (I had to mention tile there--what a godsend. Somebody remind me to send the creator of tile a thank you note later...or perhaps just a srongly worded letter to the sadists at the carpet company). Toilet transfers were the toughest. At first, I didn't know whether to go pants down in the chair and then transfer, or wait til I go to the toilet, and same story for going pants back up again. I tried a few different things before figuring out what I can only assume is the best way to go about it...but that's not saying much. For those who are curious, the winning combo was pants down in the chair, pants up on the pot. You should try it sometime: try managing your clothing in a seated position without moving your legs/hips. For first timers, I recommend setting aside a good 20 minutes. :)
Now for one of my favorite stories from the weekend: I volunteered at a handcycling clinic on Saturday, which involved helping transfer people from their wheelchairs into handcycles, so naturally, I had to cheat for a few hours here as well. At the end of the clinic, one of the other volunteers saw a lone wheelchair (the one I came in) parked under the pavilion and informed the organizer of the event. Instant panic set in as everyone thought we had lost someone! Man down! Someone has gone MIA, or some slacker volunteer did a less than stellar job keeping track of their participant. I quickly told them that the chair was mine, to which they responded "No, the WHEELCHAIR." Right. The wheelchair. He's with me. :)
Funny story two (i'll make this one quick): wheeling from my car to the steps of my apartment, locking my brakes, hopping out and carrying my chariot up the stairs just in time to give our neighbors across the way a good laugh/feeling of horror as they witnessed this miracle from their balcony. I wish I could say this happened just the one time...
Saturday afternoon I vacuumed my apartment, did some laundry, and attempted some light cooking. My shoulders were on fire because everything...I mean EVERYTHING was taller than I was in the chair. So you remember when you were in elementary school and you raised your hand when the teacher was turned toward the blackboard and you waited for what felt like an eternity with your hand in the air? Remember using your other arm to support the one in the air? It was like that, except the teacher never did call on me. I'm writing a letter to the publisher of Dante's Inferno to incorporate this into the 7th level of hell.
Saturday night involved a trip to the grocery store. this was really interesting to see the social dynamic. Let's first review some of the social norms/grocery store protocols: When passing someone in the aisle, pleasantries are not exchanged unless of course you are walking between the person and whatever shelf item they are perusing. So, aside from people staring, I found that people would say "excuse me" even when we were just passing each other on our respective sides of the aisle. I also found that people would try to make conversation with me, which, as we established earlier, is something one might do when passing someone in a park or something, but not so much in the grocery store. Another hurdle was getting to top shelf items that were out of my reach. I would wait for someone to walk by and then ask them to do me a solid. Most were more than happy to oblige; however, one woman (granted she was older, so she may have just been hard of hearing) didn't acknowledge me at all. I asked her twice, the second time a little louder, plus I was positioned right next to her, and she didn't so much as look my way. Again, I'm sure this was attributable to the pitfalls of being an octogenarian, but I admit I felt self-conscious and a little gun-shy after that. After making the cashier dismantle the credit card machine so I could see the screen, I secured my grocery bags by whatever means possible and made my way out. I think the cashier and I were both laughing inside when I declined his offer of "Will you be needing help getting this to your car, Miss Booth?" No thanks, Charles, I like to live life on the edge.
Getting dressed: difficulty level around 6/10. This quickly jumps up to an 8 or so when trying to put on jeans straight out of the dryer. A word to the wheelchair using wise: always air dry your pants.
Car transfers: I got the hang of getting in and out, but the real booger was dismantling and assembling the wheelchair from the car. The best was doing a car transfer and my arm hitting the horn for a good 5 seconds while I hoisted my body into the car. That's the last thing you want when dragging your body into your car in front of an audience: more attention drawn to you in your time of short-lived struggle.
Another quick quandary of the weekend was the setup of my apartment complex. They have a curb cut from the parking lot (applause) followed guessed it...steps. What a feat of engineering genius. Thanks for the curb cut though, guys. At least now I can park my @$$ on the sidewalk instead of being arrested for loitering in a public parking lot.
Highlight of the weekend was going to church on Sunday evening. I sat next to a fellow wheelchair user: a guy about my age in a power wheelchair. We introduced ourselves and had that instant bond that you feel with your frat brothers, your teammates, or with other freshman on the first day of high school. Our conversation at the end of the sermon went like this:
Guy: "How long have you gone to church here?"
Me: "About 3 years"
Guy: "Hmmm, me have I not ever seen you here before?"
Me: "Well, I'm usually not in the chair..."
Guy: "What, like you're faking it?"
Me: "Yeah."
Guy: "But you move like you're a para(plegic) did your pressure reliefs and everything!!"
In case anyone is wondering, that last statement was specifically the highlight of my night. The fact that I was playing the role well enough to make a believer out of someone with an actual spinal cord injury. However, I felt like I needed to apologize to him for my act of deceit, even after explaining my experiment. No hard feelings. Made a new friend. :)

That about sums it up. It was a great learning experience. I enjoyed seeing people's reactions and the innocent, inquisitive stares of children. Admittedly, I took some risks in my wheelchair that I probably would not have done if I were actually a paraplegic. Again, I tried to be as realistic as possible, but there were times where I did something and then afterward realized that I only did it because I knew that if it really came down to it, I could get myself out of it: if I fell over in my chair, I could pick myself up, dust myself off, and pop right back up, which would not be the case in reality. Also, I would be a fool if I didn't acknowledge the fact that my self-confidence and self-image in the wheelchair would likely be drastically different if I were 1. a legitimate wheelchair user and 2. a life-long wheelchair user. Even if only subconsciously, I knew that my term lasted a mere 3 days.

Now returning to life as a non-wheelchair user, I am still learning where the balance is between being overly nice/overly attentive and being standoff-ish/rude. I found that people generally were at one of the two extremes: either going out of their way to be nice to me, make conversation with me, wanting to help so much it made me seem helpless, etc. or they avoided even making eye contact with me for fear of being accused of staring at the handicapped. That being said, if you see someone in a wheelchair at the grocery store or getting in/out of their car, I'm sure most would appreciate you asking if they could use a hand. Another thing I've recently learned: wheelchair users are some of the coolest people you will ever meet. They all have an amazing story to tell, and have an inherent air of coolness about them for having dealt with some sort of tragedy and come out victorious. What's that saying, "Attitude determines your altitude?" Quick, somebody write that down...

Saturday, April 24, 2010

A Word of Welcome

Hello all! Well, I'm finally going to do it...I've finally created a blog. I guess I've refrained from doing this is the past for fear that i would have nothing of consequence to say, but, turns out, that's one of the hallmarks of blogging, and yet they rarely fail to entertain.

Allow me to catch you up on what's going on here: I'm spending this weekend in a wheelchair, posing as a paraplegic. This is an attempt to empathize with my patients living with spinal cord injuries as well as a sort of social experiment to see how the dynamic changes as a wheelchair user. I have already had some interesting experiences, but I will wait until the end of the weekend to get into the details. Wish me luck, and thanks for reading. :)