Friday, October 18, 2013

My determination

"What do you plan to accomplish?"- a journalist from the Polish disability magazine "Integracja" asked me the day before I boarded a plane to Munich where I was asked to deliver a keynote address at the World Congress on Conductive Education. "I have a debt to repay"- I said, but that was only part of the story. The 2 hour sit-down interview almost didn't happen.  Just the night before I was rushed to the emergency room with a 38.4 C fever. On Monday I was on day two on my three day antibiotic regimen. Hearing that I had to speak on Saturday, the doctor prescribed something that she described as pretty strong, but she had also warned me that it may not work and I'd have to get sick days. But the Congress, the event that happens every few years was not something I could easily get sick leave from. These people flew me from Europe because they wanted to hear what I had to say. Most likely they'd be understanding if I really couldn't deliver but  I after all that it took to get me over there I didn't want to be the one to disappoint them, so close to the finish line. On Sunday night my mother looked at me like I was a crazy person when I refused to cancel the interview. I felt this was something I had to do at all cost, to afford the Congress every ounce of publicity that I could. It was my understanding that they had not been extremely proactive with the media and they were not exactly coming up with creative ways to use me for their PR either- which I would have been more than happy to do. So, there I was Monday afternoon, falling asleep as I was getting dressed, having no speaking voice, just trying to get through the day. My regular wheelchair was in repair and we were hoping it'd be done by Tuesday- which it wasn't and most of my time in Munich was spent trying to fix it up rather than exploring. I met the journalist in a 20-year old hospital style wheelchair with flat tires I could barely navigate on my own. I could barely speak and my drugs where in my manpurse. It was then than I thought, perhaps I'm overextending myself and biting more than I could chew. What am I doing forcing myself like this with my throat on fire and an obvious ear infection? Even the next day after I landed in Munich I was in no condition to interact with people. My uncle offered that I take a nap. I was out like a light and didn't feel much better after it either. One thought- just get through Saturday. And I did. But it did make me wonder, am I that determined or simply that stubborn. Is there a difference and if so- w hat is this thing driving me?

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