Balloons and bruises


I was lying in hospital the other day, feeling fairly average (ok, I was feeling RS). My doctor came to check me out and, I thought, to discharge me, but no. He wanted me to stay longer to get pain and other things under control and would come back at 2pm. Ordinarily I would think “hmph” in that situation, but I must have been feeling pretty bad because I didn’t care.

My mother arrived, which I thought was nice until she started complaining about how expensive the parking was and now she’d have to pay for about 4 hours parking, instead of just 1 … Sorry about that, Mum.

By 2:10pm her patience waiting for the doctor was being tested.

By 4:30pm I was getting anxious. Actually, I wasn’t, but my mother was definitively grumpy about the doctor being late, and that made me anxious. So I decided to make balloons out of the rubber gloves in the nurses’ kit.

Not smart.

One balloon in and I felt my groin “pop”. Ouch. Then I couldn’t move my leg up and down. Double ouch.

I called the nurse and she checked me out (hiding her laughter, as I was – when I wasn’t panicking that is). Just a hematoma. Phew. She said: “no more blowing up balloons, you!” Ok. She didn’t get any arguments from me on that front.

Now I have a MASSIVE bruise in my groin, all colours of the rainbow. Actually it’s a string of bruises, mostly blackish purple extending from my groin half way up to my belly button and half way down my thigh. Still getting darker.


Lesson: don’t blow up balloons (or rubber gloves) the day after surgery.


4 thoughts on “Balloons and bruises

  1. Thanks for listing me on your blogroll. My backlinks have never worked (grrr) so I never know when people link to me! Take care and get to feeling better, Reas. PS, I think you need to enlist someone to blow up the rubber latex glove balloons for you. I think they’re much better than the mylar ones that come with flowers.

  2. Here’s the comment I couldn’t post on the forum due to the server screwing up:

    Hi, sweets —

    You know a bit of my story, I think, but I’ll relate it briefly here. For me, it was a two-pronged approach; I made some good friends prior to going into therapy, and have started what looks to be a very significant relationship about a year and a half into therapy.

    I think that, for me, learning to trust was, bizarrely, easier than it is for many people because I am almost unbelievably cerebral. This was an asset because it was relatively simple for me to define what friendship looks like based strictly on non-emotional criteria of behavior. Feeling is, I think, where people get the most f*cked up with trust issues, because for those of us who are very badly damaged, our feelings are often unreliable and just plain wrong. We are often drawn to people and situations that mimic past trauma, or that offer opportunities to re-enact past pain, because our hearts want a resolution of pain that we’re never, ever going to get from another person.

    This is why my ability to feel absolutely nothing was incredibly helpful in making friends. I know that sounds utterly insane, and yet, looking back on how I did it, it’s completely true.

    It’s not hard, if you’re utterly divorced from your feelings, to determine who’s a good and trustworthy friend, or to determine how to interact with a friend. The hard part is, in fact, not being reactive when unhelpful feelings suggest unhelpful behaviors. Reducing interaction to behavior and facts is, I think, the single most useful thing I did in learning how to trust.

    People say all kinds of things, but talk is cheap. I know my friend Elissa loves me because of how she behaves toward me; and I know she can be trusted because she has laid herself on the line in my interactions with her. She has hurt me, and pissed me off, and irritated me, too … but when I am tempted to push her away because of these things, the reliable facts of how she treats me keep me on track. They also provide a model of how to treat her, as well. You can learn to be a friend by having a good, functional friend.

    When I was looking for a relationship, I had a deal-breaker list a mile long that I wasn’t willing to compromise on. None of my criteria had to do with looks, incidentally. They were all real things that I’ve learned I absolutely must have in a close interaction. And the hard part was respecting myself enough to stick to it, and believing that I deserved what I wanted. I thought I’d never get it. I’d given up, because I wouldn’t compromise on the weird and unlikely list of characteristics I needed in a partner. And to my great surprise, she turned up … and by an equally weird twist of Fate, she also happens to be an aesthetic type I’ve always found exceptionally attractive.

    I think that learning to trust is first about learning to trust yourself, and trust that what you need and deserve really is what you need and deserve — from a partner, from a friend, from family. Then stick to it. 🙂 Once you can trust yourself to protect yourself in interactions with other people, you’ll trust other people much more easily, too. Will people hurt you, still? Oh yes, you bet they will. But the difference is that you won’t hang around to let them do it twice.

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