Skip to main content

Another Hospital Trip

Sunday was my turn to visit the local hospital. After I fainted two or three times, my wife managed to get me to the local emergency room. It seems the flu was winning — I was seriously dehydrated.

We took Muttley to the vet Wednesday, and the vet had a cold. Otherwise, I wasn't around many people.

By Friday, I wasn't feeling so great but thought it was simply exhaustion. I went to local mall to walk and write. I grabbed a sandwich for lunch, started to walk a second loop around the mall, and started to feel weak. I drove home and took a nap.

After my nap, my wife and I collected a half-pallet of bricks from next door. The construction manager generously said we could claim any of the left-overs from the various homesites and use the brick. Another homeowner has done the same, using the bricks to build a nice box around an air conditioner and decorative edging around a patio. I didn't finish collecting all the bricks, because I felt weak.

Saturday was spent feeling horrible. Nausea, headache, dizziness, and all the other things that accompany the flu. It was pretty obvious this wasn't a mere cold.

Sunday morning, I was barely able to stand.

I recall using the restroom and washing my hands. My wife apparently heard two "thuds" and came to see what happened. I was on the floor. It isn't the fist time I've fainted, thanks to anemia, but it could have been dangerous. You don't want to faint in a bathroom with sharp corners, a toilet, and a tub. Lots of places to whack your head.

The next thing I somewhat recall is being in the hallway, on the carpet, wanting to sleep. I felt like I had stepped out of the shower without drying. Susan dried off my neck and called the after-hour medical number.

We made it to the emergency room, where I received fluids for dehydration and medication for the stomach cramps and nausea.

Without my wife, I wonder if I would have been on the floor for hours. I was so tired, I could barely move. I don't think clearly when I'm tired, and there is no way I was thinking clearly Sunday.

I often tell audiences that "independence" isn't the same as living alone. We need other people, especially friends and family. Without my wife, I wouldn't be alive and successful. She is my best friend — and much, much more. Throughout all my medical adventures, she's been there for me. Throughout personal challenges, she's been there, too.

More than once, I've thought my wife deserves better than living with me. And, yet, without her I'd be lost.

Don't let a desire to be "independent" lead to bad decisions.


Popular posts from this blog

Autism, Asperger's, and IQ

"Aren't people with Asperger's more likely to be geniuses? Isn't genius related to autism?"

A university student asked this in a course I am teaching. The class discussion was covering neurological differences, free will, and the nature versus nurture debate. The textbook for the course includes sidebars on the brain and behavior throughout chapters on ethics and morality. This student was asking a question reflecting media portrayals of autism spectrum disorders, social skills difficulties, and genius.

I did not address this question from a personal perspective in class, but I have when speaking to groups of parents, educators, and caregivers. Some of the reasons these questions arise, as mentioned above, are media portrayals and news coverage of autism. Examples include:
Television shows with gifted characters either identified with or assumed to have autistic traits: Alphas, Big Bang Theory, Bones, Rizzoli and Isles, Touch, and others. Some would include She…

Listen… and Help Others Hear

We lack diversity in the autism community.

Think about what you see, online and in the media. I see upper-middle class parents, able to afford iPads and tutors and official diagnoses. I see parents who have the resources to fight for IEPs and physical accommodations.

I see self-advocacy leadership that has been fortunate (and hard working, certainly) to attend universities, travel the nation (or even internationally), and have forums that reach thousands.

What I don't see? Most of our actual community. The real community that represents autism's downsides. The marginalized communities, ignored and excluded from our boards, our commissions, our business networks.

How did my lower-income parents, without college educations, give me a chance to be more? How did they fight the odds? They did, and now I am in a position of privilege. But I don't seem to be making much of a difference.

Demand that your charities seek out the broadest possible array of advisers and board members.…

Life Updates: The MFA Sprint

Life is okay, if more than a little hectic at the end of this first month.

With one month down, I'm 11 months away from my MFA in Film and Digital Technology. Though things might happen and things do go wrong, so far I'm on schedule and things are going well —— though I'm exhausted and working harder than I did for any other degree. Because the MFA requires projects every week, this isn't as easy to schedule as writing. Even researching a paper can be done from the comfort of home, at any hour.

You cannot make movies by yourself, at any time of day. It doesn't work that way. Filming takes time, and often requires a team of people. It's not comparable to working alone on a degree in writing or rhetoric.

The team-based nature of film is exhausting for me, but I enjoy the results. I also like the practical nature of the skills being taught. You either learn how to adjust ISO, f/Stop, shutter speed, and other variables or you don't. You can have theories …