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Monday, June 11, 2012

The Man Without A Nose

This morning, I woke up in the middle of a bad dream. Which is not so much a "waking up" as being jolted, rocketed out of your sleep and, heart pounding, lurched into consciousness.

In the dream, I had just gotten married and was quite happy. I was following my newly betrothed down a pathway near the seaside, when he turned, grabbed my hand and began to tell me how very much he loved me. When I looked up at this man, this dream stranger, I was horrified to see that he didn't have a nose!

As I finished typing that last sentence, honestly, I laughed out loud, because it seems quite absurd. But I wasn't laughing in the dream. I was horrified and panicked. I couldn't believe that my new husband did not have a nose and that I, somehow, had never noticed this flaw before! In fact, not only did he not have a nose, in the place where a nose should be--was a gaping pink hole. The edges of this nose hole were jagged skin flaps, that undulated like octopus tentacles with each word he spoke.

And that's when I woke up in a heart pounding panic.

Now, I often wonder what a dream "means" not in any supernatural sense, but in the sense of what message my subconscious mind may be trying to send me. But early this morning, I could not make sense of it and chalked it up as one of those strange anxiety dreams.

Later, while walking the dog, I still could not shake this image of the man without a nose, and then it occurred to me that my dream was telling me that I had missed something "as plain as the nose on your face". And I sort of chuckled at that cliche. And immediately thought of that wheelchair. That tilt-in-space IRIS wheelchair which OT and the sales rep think would be so wonderful for Bob. Which looks not so much like a wheelchair but like a super-sized baby stroller.

Yesterday, I took out the IRIS wheelchair picture again and showed it to Bob hoping to glean an understandable response from him. But he only kept pointing to the footrests and saying "ankles". Now the footrests on this new wheelchair are of the same design as the footrests on his current wheelchair and I explained that to him. But he kept pointing at those footrests on the picture, then he pointing at his wheelchair footrests and saying, "better."

Bob's current wheelchair is a Quickie 2 Lite which is made by the same company that makes this IRIS wheelchair. And, I tell you, the footrests look exactly the same. I told Bob that, but he kept insisting his footrests were better. And we sort of went round for round and I was left just sort of frustrated and confused.

This morning, while walking the dog and thinking about that man without a nose and the wheelchair dilemma---it suddenly occurred to me what Bob meant. It's not the footrests themselves, but the position of the footrests in the photo (which is the same photo I posted here) and shows the chair tilted back. Bob was trying to tell me that he did not want to travel around in a wheelchair with his feet or "ankles" tilted up in the air.

When Boomer and I came home, I asked Bob if that was what he had meant, if he did not like the tilting feature of the new wheelchair and he said, "Exactly."

You know, it's Bob's wheelchair, so it's his decision, not mine--and certainly not the OT's or the wheelchair sales rep's decision.

So I've already called the sales rep this morning and left a message on his machine to cancel that order. I'm sure he won't be happy, but he's not the one who has to sit in the chair. I also asked him to call me back and set up a time he can come over, put Bob in his wheelchair and we can figure out how to make it more comfortable.

And I should've known that's what Bob had meant. I mean, it was right there, in the picture, plain as the nose on your face.


Jenn said...

You are one sharp cookie, lady! Excellent interpretation of the dream!!! Kudos in communication guys! Rock on. :-)

Anonymous said...

Bob may not be able to speak volumns in words, but he definately is observant and communicates in a way you can understand. I sincerely feel you and Bob made the correct decision.
Hugs, Dan

Helen M said...

That tilt-in-space chair does not need to be in the tilted position at all times, thus eliminating ankles sticking out. Good job on the nose-on-your-face interpretation. Loved it. Laughed out loud.