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3 Apr 2011

Post 280: Is this bloody good enough?

They say that the definition of insanity is expecting a different outcome from always doing the same thing – a particularly good line I nicked from Wall Street 2. In which case I'm insane.
At the moment I am racked with self doubt over whether I'm doing the best for myself and the people who care about me. I'm particularly concerned that this latter group of people are dwindling in numbers because of what this stroke has done to me and who (or what) I've become.
Before I get on to that I really want to address something that has been a key feature of any criticism I have come in for lately. Namely that any or all of my public outlets have been manipulated by me to generate sympathy for myself. I can't lie, I much prefer people to be sympathetic but I vehemently deny that I'm trying to generate pity or create 'a pity party'. That is and would be pathetic, and although I've often said how pathetic I feel, I think I'm better than that. Feel free to argue about that amongst yourselves.
I think of this blog as a way to try and cleanse the troubled cache generated by the insanity of doing the same thing and expecting to get better. I genuinely think I try pretty hard to get better but I get upset when people tell me to try harder, I see this as aggressive negative criticism and makes me feel much worse. I feel like I'm trying as hard as I can. I'm a believer that life only achieves value from interactions with other humans and the only way I think I can do a lot of this these days is by sitting on this computer and communicating with people via email or facebook. Some disagree, and think I should give up my computer time and do exercises or rest to try and further my physical recovery and possibly reduce my fatigue. Let me make this perfectly clear, I already destroy myself training every weekday for an hour during my physiotherapy/personal training sessions and rest/sleep doesn't ever make me feel any better, actually it feels like wasted time, my fatigue is all encompassing, and masks every positive change to my feeling of wellbeing my training regime has ever made. I am not going to be told by anyone that I'm not trying hard enough! People who have tried to make me do more have rapidly become estranged because despite some of their own experiences (ie disability without fatigue or fatigue without physical disability -ie they can use both hands and walk) they can't possibly understand how bad I feel yet I still do my physiotherapy. There's encouragement (which I need) and there's people giving me their ill-informed opinions (which I need like a hole in the head). The latter, disguised as the former doesn't wash either. The problem I seem to be facing is this: If I only listen to experts, who do you listen to when there are no experts? Especially when what the so-called experts have suggested has done sod all to make me feel any better. I am a bit fed up of hearing the umpteenth story about such and such who battled against their disability and is now fine. I am battling, I haven't given up, I'm just disappointed by the lack of results thus far – sure I'm able to do more with help but nothing has come back online (like my balance, left arm or feeling normal) and all the effort I put in isn't enough according to some. How awful is hearing that from anyone? Letalone from people who you thought were your friends? Despite this I still do all this torture because I think 'it's the right thing to do' and it's the best use of all the money that's been kindly raised. I hope I'm making sense. End of rant about my current existential quandry. Despite what anyone tells me I'm never going to give up my habit of seeking out interesting live events or meeting kind new people or old friends. At the moment my ability to weed out confidence tricksters, nutters and bad apples is working well, and correspondence usually goes on for quite a while before tea/lunch in sunny Oxshott takes place but you can never be too careful. My new van arrives in 10 days and I've high hopes it will enrich my life (and make life significantly easier for everyone). Particularly Mum and Dad who will benefit from the start of the Proms season in the summer. In fact I took them for the 2nd time to Symphonic Rock at the Albert Hall on Thursday. I think it's the 3rd time I've been and it's always great to hear the power an Orchestra can create in the best music room in the world in the best seats in the house. What made it particularly cool was they played Elbows best track 'a day like this', which I'd heard Elbow play the Saturday before in the Dome and I not surprisingly have to report that the Dome Elbow version was far superior. I'm not my parents age yet, despite feeling far older. Anyway Radio 2's Ken Bruce was as bald and Scottish as ever and his compere's jokes were as hit and miss as last year but I suppose he has to moonlight as something when he's not sending his listeners to sleep. Harsh, I know. A big surprise this week was reconnecting with an old mate that I used to help put on some crazy parties in Stockwell about ten years ago.In blue with glasses Our paths have diverged a bit, I'm in a wheelchair, he's now unbelievably an aircraft captain, but for Ryanair, so we'll call it even. A seriously good lad though, who tracked me down through the wonder of facebook. Rich and I were still yacking bull about the 'good old days' when my lift turned up to take me to see punmeister extraordinaire Milton Jones at the Bloomsbury theatre. I've seen Milton a few times, and my legendary lift for the evening came from Chris Dugdale and his lovely wife Alexis. Regular readers will recognise Chris as the unbelievable magician who I harangue into doing my birthday every year – a very talented and seriously good bloke. I also must thank Jatinder for taking me to lunch on Wednesday – it's nice to have someone like her to talk to, it's nice to talk to someone who really tries to look past the stroke. So despite being fundamentally confused about the direction of my life I'm determined to find a way – it confuses the hell out of me most of the time!
I just this second got an email from my great friend the Reverend Richard to tell me that his lovely wife Vicky has happilly and healthily given birth to their first son – this may well be the 2nd coming! He has been called Barnabas. A very theological and fundamentally cool name. Finally,finally, some great news from my friends, the Icelys, Dom has finally passed his patent law exams. Despite being a diligent and clever lad passing these b*ggers has evaded him for a while. I am chuffed for him. Sorry about the length of this post.

1 comment:

Alice said...

Just catching up on your blog, Dom. Thanks for the shout and good to see a picture of Ricardo on there. Domski

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