In February of last year, I stopped.
Walking more than a few steps was suddenly impossible.
Research, organization, and oodles of bureaucracy now took up my days. Since I was stuck in my bedroom for two months, time wasn’t an issue. I launched plans, but they would just take an awful lot of time to accomplish.
Last week, just over a year later, things finally began moving, including me!
The electric wheelchair finally turned up, as did the van with a lift, which I’d ordered last summer, and the payment for my house adaptation came due — all on the same day!
I spent hours trying to get the wheelchair going. If I could learn how to run computers before Windows — yes, I’m that old — this wouldn’t defeat me. Nothing helped: the instruction book, internet searches, or YouTube. I was getting so desperate I wondered if the Ask Jeeves search engine was still going.
Breathe, relax, and Zen.
The battery was fully charged. The seat swiveled back and forth. The wheels just wouldn’t engage. Someone would be coming around to instruct me in its use, but this was not just a new toy — it was a long-sought-after aid.
Maybe there was a cutoff switch. I worked out where it could be and gave it a go. We had liftoff! Now I could go into the kitchen when I liked, go back to the sitting room, and even answer the door!
I could even attempt a go on my pool table. Unfortunately, it’s going to have to leave soon, as I will have to move downstairs, and the self-indulgent poolroom will become our new sitting room.
Pool confronts me with the ways MS has further restricted me. I’m a right-hander, and my arm will no longer stretch far enough back for me to even play a stroke — frustrating! With my wheelchair, I could now just about get around the table.
Breathe, relax, and Zen.
The next day, I realized that I could give it a go left-handed.
Ronnie O’Sullivan, the best snooker player the world has ever seen, is ambidextrous. I’m sure that’s because he was finding it all too easy, and that way at least he had a challenge.
My challenge is to learn to play left-handed in the few weeks I’ve got with the table.
So, I’m not as snookered as I thought!
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