Wednesday I leave for the Berkshires to take BMike's course on SketchUp for Timber Framers. I am excited and nervous at the same time with this awful feeling of waiting for the other shoe to drop. I have been feeling stronger lately, which the weather has been helping. There are a few yardening projects getting done and they look good. The bike is going well, though I am not getting a lot better or stronger on it. The canal still bothers me going east, I don't go up hills a lot faster and I still have problems shifting in the right direction. A Wonderdog hasn't been getting his longest walks either.
The trip out to the Heartwood School for the course will be the longest I have driven alone though I will break it up with a stop at my Mothers. I have three days of intensive learning ahead too. But I can do this, or I can remain static and not do anything. I am choosing to challenge myself.
As I seem to get physically stronger, I notice how much my speech is labored. Its a funny thing because people are noticing it getting labored. Which makes me think it is improving also, but slowly. I am still trying to relearn that foreign language, American English, the one I have spoken for a few years.
When I drove all the time for work I always wanted to get some foreign language tapes and learn in the car. Now would be the time to do it, but I don't really drive. I don't like using the MP3 player on the bike, but I could learn to yell at a Wonderdog in Italian or maybe Chinese. It has some possibility.
Maria has claimed that I will make strides and then plateau. Of course she is still reading that book on the healing brain so I don't know. It does seem that way. In the fall I was full of piss and vinegar, but I was really just reaching a position to learn what I had lost. I fought all winter to prove I was okay and kept getting slapped down. Now that I have accepted what the stroke has done to me I can see improvement. But it remains slow.
The other shoe that could drop is a few nights of not sleeping. Nothing throws me off more. I never slept more than 5 hours a night before the stroke, now if I don't get 7 or 8 I am worthless. I guess we learn.
Before I forget and sign off, I have to mention that Ann and I played tennis Saturday morning. Ann is the comptroller at Flower City and I think this will be our 5th year of hitting balls around. Okay, she is just a little older, has a rebuilt back and still smokes, but she can still run me around the court. We are well matched, making each other run. Most time we volley, but the year we actually played she beat me fair and square. Sure, I was smoking and drinking a lot. We played a solid half hour and both were wiped out. Pathetic? yes, but we did it.