Friday, March 8, 2013

Late, late, late

I don't know what it is... I always plan to leave early. But then something happens. Something at home that keeps me at home a minute or two longer that in turn makes me try to make up time, fighting  for every minute so I won't be late. Knowing I have to be there in thirty, twenty minutes doesn't help My right hand gets tense and I can't put my glove on as quickly. Or it took me a while to reposition my chair and sit in it. Or a shoe didn't slide onto my feet like every other day. My pants get caught on the metal sticking out of my wheelchair. Or quite simply I can't find the keys or the ticket although I just had them a minute before. I love going to see a play every month and the theatre is right next door. Yet, by one reason I always end up arriving just in time, although I should have made it a few minutes earlier. It's this thought in my head that I need to hurry that makes be panic half way through. I have twenty minutes. It should be more than enough. It  doesn't even take ten minutes to get to the coffee house next to it on any other day. But on the day of the play it takes much longer. Because suddenly, I know I'm running out of time. And people are waiting. And I don't want to be the one that everyone is waiting on. And then, my right arm locks in tension. And it feels like I'm fighting my own body just to get there. The announcer's voice doesn't really help. I can hear it from my house as I live right next to it. This your 15 minute call... 10 minute call... 5 minute call... My body is unpredictable when stress and tension takes over. And the idea that the clock is ticking and I'm not there effectively slows my down. The moves take longer, my heart beats faster and I freeze. I would have been there quicker if I wasn't so focused on time... If I just learned to relax. But then, this is exactly what happens in a standardized timed testing environment. My cheeks burn, I turn red , my breath is short and I struggle to move.My hands turn stiff and get really heavy. It's like I'm forcing myself to move forward. I seem like a deer in the headlights. Last Sunday I felt like I pulled something in my arm while going up the Hippodrome ramp. I've decided to pull myself up all the way by the railing with my left hand. I know I need to get to the elevator and then find my sit. I'm fine as long as they see me in the building. They won't start without me. Yes, I suppose it's good to plan as if I didn't even have the last thirty minutes. But then, that is not even my point. What I'm trying to get across is how much of an unpredictable element my body can be with all the tensions and how a little, unplanned delay can have huge implications- A minute here and there costs me dearly. What I'm also explaining is how connected by body and mind seem to be. How sometimes it feels like I'm battling my own body before I take on any outside circumstance. And how much easier it would have been if it cooperated with me a little bit. I never fully know what is going to happen, but I know myself well enough to plan around it. But I not always can. With adrenaline pumping, red, sweaty and tired I entered the audience with three minutes to go. And then the play was delayed maybe five, maybe ten minutes as other people kept pouring in.

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