Saturday, July 7, 2012

In Praise Of Hands

Behold the hands, how they promise, conjure, appeal, menace, pray, supplicate, refuse, beckon, interrogate, admire, confess, cringe, instruct, command, mock and what not besides, with a variation and multiplication of variation which makes the tongue envious."
~~Michel de Montaigne, 16th cent. French writer
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"If you hear screaming from the next room," he said, "it's just me using this saw on the lady in there."
 A joke, of course, to tease the teenager getting a new cast in the room next to mine.

I'd worn my cast for a month and would soon be released from the insufferable thing; it came off with two zips of the saw and I was left startled and staring at a withered, atrophied limb~~
enough to make a grown woman cry.
 The good doc came in to check the x-rays and said, "looks good, all things considered.
 See the white where bone healing has begun?"

And so hand therapy began:
Six times a day, every two hours. With fingers curled in a fist, I must will my muscles to
bend my wrist down as far as possible, hold for ten seconds, then reverse to bend the wrist back as far as possible, and hold for another 10 seconds;
Repeat 10 times.

Then, there are a series of clockwise and counterclockwise rotations of the wrist for circumduction; another for supination and pronation of the forearm. Hmmm, a little vocabulary expansion, too.

My therapist cooked up a custom splint. Stirring about in a sort of crockpot filled with hot water, she conjured up a plastic wrap that fit and fastened on my arm with Velcro strips.
 "Wear it at all times," she said, "taking it off only for bathing and hand exercises."
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I cannot alter the past,
 but the future is very much in my hands.
~~Mary Lyden Simonsen

And so the journey for renewal begins, one infinitesimal movement at a time.
I want to clap, clasp, appeal, conjure, cook, pick up a baby, instruct, play, and create again.

1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10. Breathe.
2-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10. Breathe.
3-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10. Breathe.

I hear a new mantra coming on~~the future's in my hands.