I rehabilitate myself at least three days a week.
I have a great physical trainer with whom I have much in common. However, there is a peculiar issue with which currently confuses me.
After I acquired meningitis in 1971, my right side became more dominant (I began life ambidextrous). Although I still ate with my left hand and despite the fact that I played kickball and soccer with my left leg, I batted right-handed and slugged people with my right fist while in the course of defending myself all through my elementary school years. Remember that I had been bullied almost to death earlier in my life. Fighting was the only way to keep bullies away from me.
Something is amiss, however, because my right leg is now more stable than my left.
While my balance was never anything to brag about, one of my biggest fears I was in my twenties was being having to perform a sobriety test in front of Los Angeles Sheriff’s deputies because I was never good at heel-toe.
While it has always been quite the adventure to stand on either leg, I now see that my current ability to do this has become much more difficult.
My physical trainer has me stand on one of those big plastic balls that a first grade teacher might improvise to represent Jupiter, but I have to fight for control-regardless of which leg I use. The irony is that my right leg has now become stronger than my left.
This is a serious concern for me, because the question now arises:
WHAT DID THE 2007 SEIZURE DO TO MY BRAIN?
l knew that something was wrong from the moment I was in the emergency room in Burbank, California. When the neurologists told me that they could clearly see the original brain damage, but could find no evidence of anything new, I screamed, “BULLSHIT! SOMETHING’S WRONG! I FEEL DIFFERENT!”
The neurologists continued to insist that there was nothing new. However, my behavior had changed-and not for the better, either.
My fuse became shorter, whereas I had it nearly under control before this.
I was able to pull off what I call a Yosemite Sam, which is the ability to find a way out of an aggravating situation and defuse in a safe place.
However, I am unable to do so now.
I struggle with social skills again, and it’s almost as bad as when I struggled with the same skills thirty years ago. I experience more difficulty with verbal intent.
The biggest mystery to me, however, is why my left side has become stronger and exhibited more control than my right side, as this never was.
What damage did that second seizure infect upon me, and where, other than the frontal lobes-which were already damaged by the meningitis?
One thing which I have always had in my favor is that I refuse to accept what is. There’s no point in living if you accept limitations.
You do what you can with what you have left. Whatever you lack, you take for yourself and take the freeways out of town, as quality of life is more important than life itself.
While it’s harder for me to concentrate and while it’s more difficult for me to remain civil to the truly idiotic who choose to believe that I’m a drug addict, I did acquire my college degree-something that most people would never have thought I could ever do.
So, if you know someone like me, don’t count them out. Not only do they possess hidden talents which can benefit the world, but the same people also a simmering rage if disenfranchised-and you don’t want your family to get that phone call, do you?