Friday, May 13, 2005
How I Got Here, Part 52
Yay for Friday! I’ve written 32 pages this week and will get up to 40 by day’s end. Eight pages a day. Gimme a dog biscuit. Yahoo.
Now if I only knew what I’m gonna write next week. I definitely have some planning to do this weekend.
We left off our NES yesterday with my losing the ability to read. My eyes were doing such weird things. I just couldn’t look at light or focus on anything, because it would fry my brain. Really hard to explain the feeling. I’d have to put something over my eyes to block out sight and any light, my brain not being able to handle the stimuli.
Zondervan, bless ’em, sent me the complete NIV Bible on CDs. Now I could listen to the Psalms.
January and February passed, then March. Palm Sunday weekend was approaching, which meant Mount Hermon. No way I could go, of course. I’d signed up way back in December and hadn’t pulled my reservation yet, hoping for a miracle. But it didn’t look good.
Then came a break in taking the medication. The high doses in various cocktail mixtures are so hard on the body that a Lyme patient can’t take them continually. Every 4 weeks or so is a week-long break. Wouldn’t you know it, that week coincided with Mount Hermon. And because I was off medication that week, my symptoms lessened considerably. (Quick medical explanation as to why less medicine equals less symptoms. The medications kill Lyme, but those little spirochetes don’t exactly go gently into that good night. Oh, no, they die kicking and screaming—and throwing horrid toxins into the body. Result—worse symptoms.)
So by the time Mount Hermon came, I could actually drive myself down there. (It’s ah hour away.) Okay, so I couldn’t stand for any length of time, and couldn’t walk much, but I got myself a handy-dandy electric sit-in thingy, and I was all set. My stuttering was down considerably, so maybe I wouldn’t sound like a complete idiot. I would have enough energy to attend meals at Mount Hermon and manage the book signing. But that was all. No classes, no evening services. I barely got through the days, but when I was out tootling around on my go-cart, I tried to put on my best face. Which wasn’t worth all that much to look at, I’ll tell you.
Anyhoo, this motorized cart has to be unmotorized when you need to roll it without turning it on. It’s a simple flip of a switch. My husband turned it off so he could roll the thing to the back of our car, lift it up and put it inside. I knew when I reached MH that I’d have to ask someone to take it out of the car for me.
Soon as I drive up to MH I spot an editor pal—I think it was Terry Whalin. (I wasn’t remembering too well at the time, you know.) Anyway, Terry or somebody lifts the cart out of the car for me. Then along comes two ACFW pals—DiAnn Mills and Kathleen YBarbo. They say they’ll help me check in and get my bags into my room. I’m set to be on a main floor so I can drive my cart right into the room.
Great to have friends to help. All seems to be going fine and dandy. Except that the cart won’t work. I climb on, turn the key, and nothing happens. I don’t know why. Think the thing has broken. I completely forget about flipping the switch to re-motorize it.
Oh, man, now what to do? An hour away from home, on that very hilly terrain of Mount Hermon, and no motorized cart. I can’t walk three steps on that slanted ground.
First things first. DiAnn and Kathleen say they’ll get me to my room, since I’m pretty tired From there I’ll call the place I rented the cart from—maybe they can tell me how to fix the thing. My room is across the street and down a hill. A good size hill. (For those of you familiar with MH, I was staying in Azalea, the dorm lodge behind the sanctuary.) So wonderful D. and K. say they’ll just roll me down the hill to my room, then one of them will drive my car around and unload all my stuff for me.
Yay for terrific helpers.
So. I’m on the go cart. Holding my cane, which I will need when I get off said cart in my room. D. and K. will hold the cart in back to keep me from rolling too fast.
They push me across the street. Which happens to be level.
We reach the hill.
My mind is a little fuzzy on how this happens. But somehow D. and K. decide that K. can handle this operation alone. D. will go ahead and drive my car.
K. and I start down the hill. All goes well at first. Then we start to pick up speed.
Boy. We are really picking up speed.
In fact, we are going faaaaast.
This all happens in a matter of seconds. I turn to look over my shoulder, opening my mouth to tell K. to slow me down a little. “Kathleen—”
She’s not there.
I take in the terrorizing truth in a split second. The go-cart has slipped from her hands. She’s running to catch up, a look of abject horror on her face, and she's not going to make it. Not at all.
I pull farther away.
The wheels pick up more speed.
I swivel back toward the hill before me. At the bottom on a bench sits a man, watching our deathly spectacle with perfect calm. Like he’s waiting for a bus. I am headed straight for him.
“Kathleeeeeeeen!!!!” I scream.
The cart pulls further away--and rockets down the hill.
Read Part 53