Perhaps The Day began before the day began—meaning while I was still asleep and dreamed I was unpacking a large new laptop from a box and installing it on my desk. I say that because after I actually woke up and turned on the computer—it wasn’t new and the keys were still sticking. When a person touch types, it is especially aggravating when keys stick, because one can type in sentences to paragraphs before looking up and seeing all the misspelled words that are missing because of the letters that stick—M, V, C, X—well, the X isn’t so bad—and the punctuation marks like : “ ‘.
The day did not improve from the disappointing start of sticking keys. To the optician to get an eye appointment (I haven’t had one in 11 years) so I can get new glasses and not need to wear two pairs at a time, one on top of the other to read small print—like my Bible. No appointment available until the end of December. To the pharmacy to pick up a prescription for my husband…and the important pills he needed were not in the bag. To the electronic and everything shop to fix a lamp for our 90-year-old housebound friend…and the store is closed on Mondays. Several other stops and a lot of walking…and it was COLD. Just above freezing with a grey overcast sky and a determined wind that knew how to get around and under any number of layers. When it is cold…I. Am. Not. A. Happy. Camper.
Then the kicker. We shopped for Thanksgiving. They don’t celebrate Thanksgiving here in the UK and turkeys are hard to find until right before Christmas. But we do celebrate Thanksgiving and we did find a small frozen turkey. That was good, but the results of putting the groceries in the trunk of the car were not good. We had a standup heater we had let our elderly friend borrow when her boiler was out and she had no heat. Somehow when I pushed the heater to the side to get the groceries into the trunk the heater cord got stuck in the trunk latch. Like…really stuck. Like really, really, really stuck. So stuck that it would not have been possible to get it out even if we had cut the cord and tried to pull it out from one side or the other. The cord would not move and it would not slide, so we would have destroyed the heater for nothing.
I tried to explain this to my husband. I told him I would take the car to the garage in the morning and let them fix it so we wouldn’t break anything. But a man has to do what a man has to do even if he has Parkinson’s and shouldn’t do it. Alan got into the back seat of the car to fix things. Then he needed fixing. Because of the Parkinson’s, he couldn’t get out again. Our car is small and has front doors, but none for the back seat. Alan was so hopelessly stuck in the back seat that I contemplated taking out a pillow and blanket for him and letting the garage folks unstick him in the morning along with the cord. I looked around for neighbors to help me pull him out—but they were all off on their own errands. I finally braced my feet and pulled like I’ve never pulled anything before—and got him out. But not without consequences. It turned into an aspirin kind of an evening to ease the muscles I pulled.
Some days are like that. But other days are fantastic. It’s all in the balance—and fortunately God holds the balance beam.