I slept alone in my own apartment last night, for the first time since I got hit by a car. I’ve spent much of this weekend alone, in my own apartment. Just in time, really, as a month of no alone time in my own space was taking a major toll. I’ve lived alone for the last nine years, except for a month when I first moved to the Bay, and this past month. I’m an introvert, and a trauma survivor, and I need my own space. So, it’s a big deal to have it again.
I’ve been hitting walls this past week. I hit done with transphobic shit from professionals that I need to help me at the beginning of the week. I hit done with no alone time in my own space. I hit a level of physical exhaustion that felt like a brick wall. I hit done with not being able to see. (My glasses broke in the hit and run and I only have very old ones with a prescription that’s wrong). I hit done with the continual asking people to help me do the most basic things I need. Unfortunately, the only one of those that is actually ok being a wall is the one about alone time in my own space. So I’m hoping that getting this time alone in my own space will make the others easier. Because there is nothing I can do about them, really. These are the ongoing conditions of my life right now.
So, I’m in my own space in a new body that moves differently and needs different things, and that means again having to think my way through the most basic things about life. How do I get out of bed? How do I make it to the bathroom safely? How do I get myself some water? How do I get things out of the fridge? How do I organize the space around me so that I can meet my basic needs? What lights need to be left on all the time so that I don’t fall in the middle of the night?
It is constant and relentless work, requiring a level of conscious deliberate thinking that is completely exhausting. Nothing is on automatic pilot, nothing is just easy. Everything is difficult and requires thinking if not pre-planning and asking for help. Everything. The more time I spend here, the more I will be able to have ease in my daily life, but right now, I have little.
I took my first shower since the hit and run, today. It took two weeks of planning to get me there, but the OT signed off on the set up, and I was able to do it, safely and with no falls or mishaps. It thankfully was possible to do the actual showering alone, but the setting up the bathroom and taking down afterwards needed assistance. It did feel good, as well as exhausting. It is good to have finally truly washed my hair. My skin feels happier than it has all month.
I put away my own groceries today (I am lucky enough to be in a place where grocery delivery is possible). Which was exhausting, but it felt really good, to be setting up a food situation that makes me feel like I can take care of that basic need. Thursday was the first time I had “made a simple meal for myself” (as the OT would put it) in my own apartment, and it is good to be able to continue to do that, to be independent about food. Depending on others around food was one of the worst things about being in the hospital (especially because they kept depriving me of it). So, this goes a long way to making me feel safer.
I am stronger than I was, and need to stop less on trips outside of my apartment. PT is a wonder for building that kind of endurance, and it is one of the main things I need to keep working on. I hope to be able to make it all the way to the car without stopping, soon. I’d like to be able to get to and from a car without needing to borrow a mobility device or have someone follow me with a chair so I can rest. I’m well on my way to that goal but it will take a bit more work.
I actually was able to think about Shocking Violet for the first time since the hit and run this weekend. (More specifically, about restructuring so it goes somewhere different after Violet and Jax have their first kiss.) It was nice to be thinking about writing again. I am hoping to do more of that. I’ve got a side project going this week (beta reading for an author I adore) that I’m thinking might get those juices flowing again. I have a month yet of non-weight bearing after surgery, and would love it if I could do some writing in that time.