No matter what walk of life someone is from, life is a learning curve, from a tiny baby through to older years. When you think about what learning is, you think of learning from a parent, caregiver, a teacher or lecturer, an employer or a friend is in a ‘safe’ environment, where you study or are shown what to do. However if someone is thrust into a new situation that isn’t the ‘norm’ or is new to them, without that support to learn how to deal with it, it can be a tricky time in their life. Especially if learning isn’t directly from someone else, if there isn’t behaviour to watch, to match. An example to follow. You have to learn from scratch, having faith in trial and error, a blank canvas to paint, if you will. It can be scary, right?
I was thinking today, about how accustomed I have gotten to dealing with immobility and pain. To getting by, coping and learning ‘on the hop’. When something catches me off guard, or I have a situation where I think “how am I supposed to do this…?”. I have had a very ‘hands-off’ approach from the hospital during my pre-op and recovery period, I put my coping down to my experiences up to now.
Then it lead me on to thinking about all those hippies who have never been through a surgery and recovery before. What a difficult and frightening time it is. I’m trying to recall my own first experience of surgery… and find that I struggle. (Have I blanked it out?). I remember a lot of sadness, crying.. which possibly gives a clue as to my frame of mind!
It’s hard to imagine that it can effect every little thing you would normally take for granted. For instance, a trip out shopping…
This may seem a tad extreme at one day off 5 weeks post-op, but today, Himself and I…went to IKEA! Mad, right?? Sitting around the house doesn’t half make you notice what needs doing/buying or sorting out!! But what a jaunt it was. Himself did EVERYTHING (a bit of a reoccurring theme of late!). Ikea very kindly swapped my crutches for a wheelchair, which given my restrictions, what still a bit precarious. I don’t know what it is about sitting in a wheelchair that makes me want to just go as fast as my hands and arms would take me 😉 That’s after I’d manage to escape the clutches of Himself who felt it safer to let him push me (love him!). But once we’d upgraded to a trolley from a bag, he had no choice (which is always an inevitable thing in IKEA.. going in for one thing… coming away with 10. Or more like 30 as in our case!!). We stopped for a Swedish Meatball supper (or ‘horse-balls’ as we were referring to them… but as the food attendant assured us, after the horsemeat scandal, there was definitely no meat of horse to be had on their menu! However, a little unsettling, are the ingredients of their meatballs… 84% ‘Meat’. Hmmm? So your guess is as good as mine as to what we were actually eating! 😉 ).
I have to say, normally I have difficult experiences when negotiating crowds… but everyone, staff and customers alike, were very patient with me during the entire shop. Which made the experience not only refreshing but more pleasurable! I cannot say the same for Himself, having to do all the carrying, my only responsibility was for an Aloe Vera, which still found it’s way to the floor more than once! I suspect it’s IKEA + Men full stop. As I’m sure many of them will agree… just doesn’t mix..! 😉