Archive | March 30, 2012

Grounded From Wheels

I’m goin’ home

And when I wanna go home

I’m goin’ mobile

Well, I’m gonna find a home

ON WHEELS, see how it feels

Goin’ mobile

Keep me movin’

 I can pull up by the curb

I can make it on the road

Goin’ mobile

I can stop in any street

Invitin’ people that we meet

Goin’ mobile

Keep me movin’

 ~ The WHO

 Due to circumstances I’ve not much control over I voluntarily have grounded myself from my wheels. Driving has always been a passion of mine –  here I am talking in past tense – the freedom to just get up and go is one now I realize I so took for granted.

I don’t have the exact day I stopped driving. Again. Because I have done it two times before this time. I stopped before neck surgery and after the cervical fusion of C4, C5, & C6. I had little range of motion that is a requirement for driving on the streets of the USA. Maybe it is different else where but the thought of people driving without being able to turn their heads left and right is a disturbing one. I knew straight away how dangerous it had become to drive when on the streets of downtown Seattle in broad daylight I was trusting my faith in God and His angels to help navigate me – pilot – uphill from the crazy busy stop and go traffic of Pikes Market to the quieter pedestrian corners of what is affectionately known as Pill Hill, but in reality is First Hill. It took me only a few times too many to admit that becoming a Seattleite and parking my wheels in the garage was the wisest choice. Only to be brought out for trips to the burbs, and long distance to the kids.

But I was not happy doing it. Nope.

And for the third time now I have parked my wheels. I cannot give the exact day I did it this time. It has not been long after the second time. I thought then that the short time grounded was the last time. I now know there will never be a last time because of the mechanics of my neck and shoulders.

This time, this third time has seemed permanent. It’s not been a year, but it’s been more than 6 months. I miss the little things about driving that I took for granted. Being able to jump behind my wheels and make fast trek to my favorite paper arts stores, craft and art stores. I have a system and when I need replenishing I prefer the luxury of driving myself, alone, not feeling the need to hurry.

I have the most ardent and sweet chauffeur. He never is too busy, always ready when I need to be somewhere else. There are tender moments that would no doubt be missed if I was not in need of a ride during the middle of the day – and in the middle of a project. No matter what I think is urgent, no matter how far and during the traffic crunch I’m sure to need to be, my BFF is as always my gallant Knight in Shining Armour. He is who comes to my immediate rescue.  How blessed am I?

Yet having to give up my wheels is still not something I am doing with grace. I wish I could say that I am. To be honest I am somewhat resentful. It’s not making a happy camper out of me having to be grounded from my own four wheels. Despite that it has been completely voluntarily so.

I miss things about driving that I only have dreams and wishes about, as well as the everyday things I took for granted. I have on my ever-growing bucket list two things regarding driving; Nascar Racing, and to travel across different countries, small rural areas being the focus in a luxury touring car. A Mercedes will do nicely, thank you. Speeding at 200mph around an oval track and slowly and with purpose trekking through mountain roads in places like Madrid.

I continue to dream these possibilities.

Being grounded from my wheels is only temporary for me. Who am I to be so ungrateful? This is not permanent and with work and skills I will get myself back behind the wheel knowing with all confidence that I can look left, look right, and even look over my shoulders. So why am I whining so? I detest being dependant on others for anything, and for me this is what having the privilege to driving is. Yet when illness or injury have a whopping effect on the ability to so safely it’s time to put away pride along with my keys.

I’d love to meet you, putting faces to names is one of the magical things about life and people. However; I trust you’ll give me  a rain check this time. This time until the restriction for your safety is lifted.

Being grounded from wheels is a bummer – just a little bit of one.

©TJHELSER 2012

Pair Up: Thank You

Pair Up: Thank You

.http://www.kidneyfund.org/pair-up/join-pair-up/

 If you know and or love anyone dealing with Kidney Disease, High Blood pressure and or Diabetes than follow the link above please.

Tree Of Hope Blooms in Blue Ribbons~ 2012

 

KIDS Center Tree of Hope Event

Event begins at 3:30pm in front of the Bend-LaPine School administration building Downtown Bend

On Friday, April 2nd, KIDS Center will kick off the Blue Ribbon Campaign for National Child Abuse Prevention Month, with our annual Tree of Hope Ceremony, this year held in downtown Bend.

The Ceremony kicks off a month dedicated to both raising awareness of the thousands of victims of child abuse in Central Oregon and focusing on what we can do as a community to make a safe and healthy place for all children to grow up in. High school students from the Second Chance program will be tying thousands of ribbons to the trees in front of the Bend LaPine Schools Administration Building, across from the Bend Library during the week leading up to the Tree of Hope Ceremony.

On April 2nd at 3:30 pm, volunteers from KIDS Center will complete the Trees of Hope by tying hundreds more ribbons, to illustrate the 2300 suspected cases of child abuse reported in Central Oregon in 2009. Ribbons will be available to guests to tie onto the Trees of Hope as they arrive. Agencies involved in preventing and responding to child abuse will also be on hand to provide guests with information on how they too can become involved in preventing and protecting children from abuse. Refreshments will be provided by the generous donation of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream.

At 4:00 pm, the ceremony will begin, with singing by the Bend Children’s Choir, a proclamation of April as National Child Abuse Prevention Month, and speeches by Bend-LaPine School Superintendent Ron Wilkinson and County Commissioner Tammy Baney. Youth winners of the Blue Ribbon Art Contest “What it means to be safe” will also be announced and their artwork will be displayed. For more information about the Blue Ribbon Campaign, child abuse prevention and other events in April, please visit http://www.kidscenter.org or call 541-383-5958.

http://www.downtownbend.org/kids-center-tree-of-hope-event/

Please don Your Blue Ribbons for the kids who have no choice but to wear the blue and purple bruises of abuse, and the hidden scars of neglect, that often does not show its ugly head until much later when little to nothing can be done to change the facts.

It costs us little to wear a Blue Ribbon for a month. How many children can count on you?

 

©TJHELSER 2012