Tuesday, December 9, 2008

One Small Step For Gimpkind...

Sunday Princess had basketball games all day. They had a tournament with 2 games back to back, only 8 minutes to rest before the next game, then we had to drive to a small town 30 minutes from here to get them to the next game. I felt sorry for the girls, they were so tired and not up to their usual standards -- except Princess. She is not as aggressive as she could be and to help get her into the game we started offering her $5 for every foul and $10 for every basket. If she plays really good we decide on an amount afterwards. Princess, with visions of moola dancing in her head, went out there and gave 'em hell. It cost us $10 apiece -- my little sister and I both pay her -- but it is worth it to see her get into the game.

After the tournament and before we had to mosey to the next game, the rest of the parents decided to take the girls out to eat and they invited us to come along. We had a little less than 2 hours to burn and wanted them to get a chance to fill their bellies and relax a bit. In the car we went back and forth about whether or not we were going to go. Princess wanted to. She wanted to hang out with her team and the restaurant they were going to had games for the girls to play. Sugarbowl and I were a little more reluctant. Neither of us had put on any makeup and were wearing ratty old sweatshirts. (Of course I had to be wearing my stocking cap with the eyes and ears on it; I couldn't possibly leave the house looking somewhat mature.) Sugarbowl is really shy, both my sisters are, so she was a little nervous about hanging out with people we don't really know. I'm not shy, but I am uncomfortable in crowded places where I have to walk in front of people, especially wearing a stupid hat. Sugarbowl decided that we both needed to leave our comfort zone and just do it, that and she was driving so I had no other choice besides sit in the car like a dog -- I chose to walk in front of people. I have to admit that it wasn't as bad as I was worried it would be. I did have to go to the bathroom and use my little sister's arm for support to walk across the whole sports bar to the W.C. But I chose to not look at people and see if they were trying to figure out what I did to my leg; its just better to "not notice." The only downside was the service. I waited tables for years, so I am always ready to understand and forgive any problems in service, but this was ridiculous. Our food came out at widely separate times: the first people served were the last to arrive, and the last of the food was a good 30 minutes behind that. We were really short on time and the last meal to arrive was one mother's chimichanga. Her husband, in between busily knocking back as many drinks as he could, told her to just eat the whole thing in one bite. He said to stick the whole thing in her mouth and show everyone how she can do that. She was so embarrassed I didn't want to laugh, but in the car we hooted over that one for awhile.

All in all it wasn't that bad. It made us feel like a part of the group of parents there. I was ready for the questions about what is wrong with me, but no one asked. I can't help wondering if maybe because my older sister has lived here for 17 years and everyone knows her husband, they already know what is wrong with D's sister-in-law. It was refreshing to not have to explain all the ins and outs of my disease. I just wish I had dressed better and picked a better hat.

3 comments:

Jen said...

I find that a lot of people just don't want to ask. Sometimes this makes me happy and other times I'm wishing to just clear the tension in the room. This'll probably make you chuckle: on one of my last days at the library this spring, I was exhausted and my left leg was about to give out. My bosses knew I had MS, but I don't know about anyone else (I had told 2 of my buddies, but that was it.) So one of the coworkers who knew I had been feeling shitty for a few days said in the breakroom (in front of about 12 people),"I hope you're feeling better, Jen." And I blurted out, "I have MS." And she was like ,"What?" And I said very loudly,"I have multiple sclerosis!"

Blindbeard: I had never seen a room clear out so fast as that day! Everyone fell silent and I had to gimp over to my locker without screaming or bursting into tears.

Sometimes it's hard to leave the comfort zone: look what happens. But it's great that you guys went out and gave 'em hell. Princess too: she's learning to be fierce.

Shauna said...

Good for you Blindbeard. the more often you just "do it", the easier it gets.

When I was first diagnosed I took a week off work (plus he 3 days to be diagnosed and gt started on steroids). I went back to work in the middle of my time off to just say hi to everyone and in one office was asked what the results of my hospital stay had been (apparently this group of people weren't in the loop). I told them it was MS. And one of the women said, "No really, what did they find?" That's when I realized my silly nature had got the better of me. They thought I was joking. That just floored me. And everyone else in the room. But since then, no one asks me point blank about any funny walks or weebles I've had, even while using a cane.
People who know you will ask after your health, people who don't know you will generally just wonder.

S.

LISA EMRICH said...

Good for you for enjoying yourself. And hey, great kudos to Princess for bleeding you guys dry. LOL