27 January 2011

St. Scarecrow

On the radio this morning I heard a piece about a guy who had an unfortunate encounter with an officer of the law. I wasn't really paying attention so I didn't catch the details. Apparently Bad Things Happened, and the guy got his head slammed into a concrete wall. He is now totally and permanently disabled.

I started listening when they talked about how his wife has to take care of him 24 hours a day. She has to feed him. She sleeps in the same room, because she has to wake up three times every night to turn him so he doesn't get bedsores. She's a saint, they said.

Fortunately the $10 million she gets from the lawsuit will make it possible for her to care for her husband for the rest of his life.

Unfortunately for Scarecrow, I did not have the foresight to acquire a disability that is somebody else's fault. He feeds me, he wakes up three times every night to turn me over, and he does a lot more besides; I will need this help for the rest of my life, and nobody is going to pay him $10 million to do it. Yet it appears he's willing to do it anyway.

He says I would do it for him if our roles were reversed, and while I like to think that's true, I'm not really sure I'm that good a person. He's just a good guy. I wouldn't say he's a saint. He doesn't believe in them anyway. But he's a really good guy.

So, in lieu of $10 million, I thought I should tell him that I love him and I appreciate everything he does for me. Since it seems kind of self-serving to tell him this while he was actually doing something for me, I wanted to wait for a time when he wasn't. The opportune moment, kind of thing. I had to wait a long time. I hadn't realized how much of his time he spends doing things for me.

The beginning of our care partnership was so gradual that I can't remember how it started. He just started helping me do things that were hard for me. Some tasks I did not want help with, no way, no how. (I can sometimes be a little stubborn that way.) He allowed me to struggle, and when I finally gave up and let him help, he never asked why it took me so long. The number of things I resisted assistance with were so few compared to the number of tasks that somehow Scarecrow assumed without my ever realizing it. When someone reads your mind so much of the time, how irritated can you get when they occasionally provide help you don't want?

As Scarecrow started helping with more and more of the things I used to do for myself, we evolved some very complicated procedures that I can't imagine anyone else ever figuring out, and even if they could, I can't imagine anyone but another ex-wrestler being able to perform. Even for $10 million.

I'm glad that woman and her husband were compensated for the injury that was done to him, but nobody's going to pay Scarecrow $10 million to take care of me. I guess he's OK with that.


  1. Wow, sweet but intense post. You kind of glossed over it, but it sounds like you found "the moment" to say what you wanted to say.

    I don't know where my neuro journey will take me. But I don't take lightly the fact that I don't have a built-in care taker or at least care helper.

  2. Very nice of u to share I believe Scarecrow and other care takers are not worth 10 million - they are priceless!

    I also wonder if things were reversed if I could do what KRP does? I would want to but could I? And if it gets worse how fair is that?

    @Bibliotekaren LOL good expression built in - I can see were this would be very nerve racking not knowing the what if's and dealing alone.


  3. What a beautiful tribute to your unsung hero. I'm still at the starting gate with getting help from my husband. But he, too, does anything necessary without making a big deal of it. I, like you, can be stubborn and independent, so we may have a bumpy road ahead!