The past couple of weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind, but I’m finally getting a chance to process it all and put it in words. I got back from New York early Wednesday morning and immediately got right back into work; in retrospect perhaps a little preemptively. The following Monday, I welcomed guide dog in training into my life. In and of itself, a new dog would have been a major adjustment; throw chronic illness into the mix and you have a real party.
I’ve been having trouble with pain and swelling in what would usually be my “good” foot for a while now, and upon returning from my trip this hit an all-time high. A few days into having the dog and thus needing to increase my walking, I had to cave and visit the emergency room to get my foot looked at by a medical professional. I’ll say this now: I am not sure that I have ever been so grateful for my friends as I have been over this past week. If having a dog is teaching me anything, it’s how to ask for help. You can question any of my friends and family, I am fiercely independent, often to a fault. I feel a constant need to “prove” that I can handle life on my own, particularly now that I am more physically capable than I have been in a long long time. What I often fail to process, however, is that nobody can handle life completely alone. Humans are inherently social creatures, dependent on one another for countless services. If someone cares enough to make themselves a consistent part of your life, then chances are they want to help you out in your times of need. Reaching out is, so it seems, the most difficult step of the entire process. Many friends have selflessly made themselves available to me for assistance this week, and I am more thankful than I can ever tell them.
Life appears to be settling down again as I settle into a new rhythm. The dog and I are slowly working out a schedule that works for the two of us, and I am formulating plans for future creative projects and lessons to pursue in the new year. Health problems will come and go, such is my life, but ultimately I have so much to be grateful for and look forward to.