I have the pleasure to announce the return of Fridays with Dale!
Welcome back, Dale. We missed you!
I’m the Enemy
By Dale Angel
Sitting in my wheelchair looking out the windows thru mostly closed curtains, I move my leg to relieve pain. I’m exhausted inside myself. I feel the tears of frustration fall as I see another day looming and I am paralyzed with fear and uncertainty. I’ve have added to these feelings.
I have become too heavy emotionally and physically for others to carry. I’m visiting the other end of seventy…no, it’s eighty…and I feel lost. Where do I belong?
I have to get out of this prison I’ve been confined to for months, mostly inside my head. Standing on my good foot I push open the curtains and let light come in, open the door to let air in, and sit trying to figure out the rest of my life.
This is war! …….I’m the enemy.
I wheel chair to the bathroom and see the folding bench sitting inside the tub. It was still wet from my feeble attempts to shower. I roll over to it and carefully fold it. Water spills all over me. I head for the back landing outside the kitchen door dragging it. There’s barely enough room for both on the porch. I unfold the bench and try to figure out how to get down the steps. I don’t even know for sure what I’m up to until I set the shower bench on the step, slide onto it, and stand up on my good leg, slide it down to the next step, pulling the wheelchair behind me. It went into a fit and rolled down the steps end over end. I have another step to master and then I’m at the bottom! While sitting on the wobbly bench I set the chair up on its wheels and slide over in it.
I grab my purse and roll for the car. I can get inside, but I need the chair. It took more effort than I had to lift, push, and physically shove it in the back seat on one leg. Anger gives me extra strength. When I start the motor and back out of the driveway, I am a new being. I was dangerously euphoric, my breath came in short puffs my head was buzzing at all the possibilities.
Now what to do? I start to shake with fear. I was a loose cannon. My heart was pounding, and I shook at the potential of what I had just done. This was power! I tell myself be sensible, be sensible, I wanted to fling and scream….cast an all.
This is the beginning of the rest of my life. what will I do with it? It seemed gracious gratefulness was a first step I need to contemplate…don’t I?
Coffee is something I can do. I drive thru and order a Latte, a big one! Sitting in the car along the banks of the river sipping my coffee……I think and think and think. I made a list of where I find myself, my feeble options. I decided on acceptance, this is a little bump in the road of life…… I can do this.
Pursue contentment most of all feed the spirit because that’s where all joy or depression generates. Cry, but after a while it’s tiring. Work on what I can do, quit mourning over life’s inevitable losses.
I asked for the furniture to be removed out of my living room and for the sewing machine to be set up. There’s a new grand baby coming. It doesn’t need anything, but I do; I need a reason to make a gift. I placed all the music I could lay my hands on at my fingertips. Several bird feeders are wonderful entertainment. The order of barrels and potting soil for my mini-garden arrives. I tell myself: cultivate a life…build…walk on old bridges. The structure needs shoring up… you have the material already, called life’s experiences.
Most of my companions are on medicine to help them cope with life. I may be tomorrow, but today, I am able to sing. Listening to music… is a better description
If a lifetime has gone by, start today working on contentment. You will need that mind set to live without meds. Happiness is home made. Life is challenging and even with all the props, they may fail. Personal interest is a divine gift, use it in either yourself, or who passes by. Your curious intellect is from our maker. Don’t waste it.
I ate my crops, a cup of peas, from the two plants from my barrel garden and tomatoes. Well, only two lived. Next year, I will do better. The wheelchair and the walker still live with me, we tolerate each other. There are no curtains to block out the light or fear to paralyze me, my spirit has climbed out of that place of darkness. How grateful I am even though damaged…. only on the outside…….. inside… a great healing has taken place.
The enemy has been vanquished.
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