Thursday, December 23, 2010

No more close shaves......

Growing facial hair is not my biggest strength nor has it ever been a goal of mine. In my late teens I unsuccessfully made an attempt at a mustache and drew the conclusion that I was too far up the evolutionary ladder to pull off the lumberjack look.

The week of Thanksgiving, as a result of a patchy, tremor-filled morning shave, I threw away the razor. I announced to Superwoman, "That's it, no more shaving." Though her tone of voice said otherwise, she dutifully replied, "That's fine."

You should see me now. "Scruffy" is a kind term to describe my current appearance. Catching a glance of myself when passing a mirror causes me to pause and giggle a bit. Not so much because I look funny *snicker* but because I've reached a place where I can accept the change without remorse. Indeed, I take some pleasure that I have accepted the fact that shaving is something that caused me great discomfort, so I removed the irritant and have not lamented the consequences.

As I lose physical capabilities, I don't bemoan the loss, I mourn the consequences. I don't miss the movement of my fingers, I miss being able to draw a heart on my wife's Christmas card. I don't miss the strength of my grip, I miss the firm handshake from a friend. I don't miss smooth arm movements, I miss the giggles of wonderment from children as I juggled their Easter eggs. I don't miss the steady walking gait, I miss the walk. Ad infinitum.

Merely being "scruffy" is an acceptable consequence to the loss.


Merry Christmas to you all!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Split-brain Consequences......

When I was taking my second year of Psychology the professor ran a film on split-brain surgery. I found it fascinating that the two hemispheres of the brain perform different tasks and when the communication between the two are interrupted, weird things happen.

For example, after the surgery, the patient could be shown a fork while the left eye is covered and the patient knew it was a fork. He could pick another fork amongst other objects but could not tell the doctor it was a fork. When the right eye was covered the patient could not identify the shape. Only when both eyes were used could the patient identify AND verbalize the object.

When my symptoms first manifested, it was the pinkie and ring finger on my right hand. Over the next two years, slowly, like sand leaking from the hole in a cloth sack, my right side has lost its muscular strength and coordination.

Now it feels as if the right half of my body is a different person. The rare times I study my face in a mirror, I can see the sag of unstimulated muscle. Even my smile has become a crooked mask of what it once was.

I can only imagine as my left brain hemisphere continues to degrade what effects may appear. Perhaps I'll know the fork but be unable to say so.

I dread hurting the fork's feelings.


I know I haven't been posting photos in my blogs lately, and it isn't just that I am taking fewer photos. It just seems that the world is less photogenic.