|Photo Description: A signpost reading 'Memory Lane'|
Today on the ride to work I thought a lot about the day I became disabled. When I knew that I wouldn't be walking at Joe's side any more. When I knew that I would need Joe in a different way than I had needed him before. When I knew that being with me would mean that he would never be free of the effects of my disability on his life.
I'm, lucky, I suppose, because I never, once, not even for a moment, thought that Joe would leave me because I was in a wheelchair and because that wheelchair had to be lifted into the trunk. I did wonder, however, if, over time, he would come to resent the work that he had to do and the unequal nature of our relationship as a disproportionate amount of our 'living together' tasks would fall to him. Would I, as people wonder and worry, be a burden to him.
I can write this now, without crying, but only because I'm looking back in time. I'm looking from the perspective of someone who rode through these concerns on wheels. I'm OK. He's OK. We're OK. But I didn't know that then. Then, I worried. Then, I cried. Then, I feared. Let's face it, the worries and fears are real, you never know how a situation will be handled until it's handled. You never know someone mettle until it's tested.
As the bus pulled up to work, I realized that my life, after disability, went on. With adaptions, with losses, with changes and, most importantly, with Joe.
This marriage thing is an interesting journey. Everyone told me about the difficulty in coping with the details, no one mentioned the other work, the hard work, of remembering and reviewing and reevaluating past events in light of the present. That warning I could have used.