Saturday, 20 July 2013

Adventuresome Spirit

Today is boat emptying day. I, along with  some helpers, will be removing all my personal effects and non-essential gear from my sailboat in preparation for selling the boat over the next couple of weeks. It is another transition. In fact the transition has already occurred; this is just maintenance.

One of the great difficulties in losing my boat this particular year is the investment I made in it, getting it setup so I could go on board during this summer. I made modifications to the topping lift and boom arrangement. I bought a bosun's chair along with a block and tackle to lift me in and out. I thought this would be enough.

The problem was, and I was suspicious of it at the time, that I did these modifications in May to go sailing in July. The interval was too much. There was just enough incremental decline in my condition to make it too difficulty, too challenging to keep going. I know I could if I pushed my body. At some point it becomes pointless to do this. At some point pushing a declining body leads to disaster.

Right now I am suffering from the effects of pushing this broken body too far. My left shoulder continues to be in substantial pain from the injury on board. I am now no longer certain if I simply pulled it while hauling on a line, or if I broke or tore something when I fell while having my heart attack. Regardless, healing is slow, very slow and I am suffering. Being on board in this shape would be a true misery.

ALS is bringing me more changes. Yet it is not, and cannot, change who I am. I will be me until I am no longer me. I may not be on my sailboat. I may turn to a different form of adventure. I can still drive, for now. It is possible I will be driving for another year or maybe even longer. My swallowing mis-coordination has just started and the loss of lung capacity is going slowly. My diaphragm is declining yet I can still draw a solid breath and throw a hearty cough or laugh.

One day these losses will mean no more road trips. It will happen slowly, almost imperceptibly. It will slide up on me, like the changes that took sailing from a joy to a job. Yet even then I will still be me. I will still be an adventurer. It's just one kind of adventure that I am losing today, not my adventuresome spirit. I am going to live until I die; I plan on living before I die.

1 comment:

  1. Your spirit is phenominal Rick. You will have this spirit until the end. And as I say beyond. Love Mom