At the stroke of Midnight tonight (unless I fall asleep before that) I’m going to say a heartfelt “Goodbye and thank you” to 2010 for four events that sound like I should be calling them disasters.
The first was that my husband Jack, who has mid-stage Alzheimer’s Disease, moved into a facility where he’s getting the care I couldn’t give him any more. The move ended years of caregiver hell for me: he was one of those who get angry and abusive as the disease progresses, a complete reversal of his once funny, gentle and loving personality.
It was a huge adjustment. But the result is that he is well cared for by people who love their work — and I have my life back.
The second event was that in June I broke my right wrist, had surgery to insert a plate and 11 screws, and spent the summer in a cast.
What’s to be grateful for about that? The surgeon and physical therapists, both incredibly skillful, and family and friends who helped while I was one-armed.
The third event was two cataract surgeries, the second one two days ago. Cataract surgery used to be done with a scalpel and required patients to lie flat for a week, head between sandbags.
Today it takes 20 minutes under local anesthesia, is absolutely painless, and you walk out of the hospital an hour later seeing clearly. I’m grateful both for today’s amazing technology and a skilled ophthalmologist.
Fourth, early this year I started this website and blog and have been sharpening its focus ever since.
I spent hours developing ways to help non-scientists (that would be English majors like me) cover science, IT and medicine not just accurately but in language that conveys their excitement. At the same time I’ll be helping those on the other side of the divide to write about their areas of expertise so that ordinary mortals can not only understand them but get excited about them.
This is something I’ve spent a career doing, becoming a science, medicine and IT junkie along the way. (I’ve got the blog subscriptions to prove it – the list will show up shortly on my blogroll.)
A couple of decades ago, none of this would have been possible.
So, my wish for you in 2011 is not that there will be no bumps in the road. That’s not likely for any of us. It’s for good friends and good cheer to handle whatever does come along.