A Crowded Battlefield (Part 1)

I’m not usually big on military or war analogies but the following is the most effective and accurate way I can describe the frustrating and overwhelming complexity of dealing with a Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) on a daily basis:

Imagine you’re on a battlefield, looking straight ahead to the line of enemy troops facing you, readying their imminent attack. Your army is significantly weakened from a recent massive battle that took some of your best troops, yet your will is still strong. There is no retreat. You have no choice but to undertake this fight, for any chance of victory or freedom lies on the other side of the army facing you. Haste as they may be, your battle strategies have been drawn, your contingency plans have been made, and for better or worse, you’re ready to engage. You give the signal to your troops to attack and you begin your advance towards the enemy.

Just seconds before you reach the troops facing you, you notice a massive army coming at you from the left. You urgently notify your soldiers and as soon as you’re getting ready to face the two imposing forces, you can’t help but notice an even larger army aggressively stampeding towards you from the right side. You barely have time to process this next challenge before you notice that somehow, a horde of fresh enemy troops is advancing upon you from behind. You are now being attacked from all sides and your battered army is facing almost certain defeat. You have seconds to shout out orders to your loyal soldiers who are surrounded and badly outnumbered, when you realize that in the sky above you, there are planes dropping bombs with the utmost intention to cause as many casualties as possible. Help at last! 

You weren’t expecting any allies, yet you hope more than anything that somehow, these planes are on your side, that they will help you fight the four armies you face in this now crowded battlefield. Immediately though, you notice that with pinpoint accuracy, the bombs are falling on your troops. You have no allies.

You’re overwhelmed, frightened beyond words, and know that adrenaline and pure shock are the only emotions that will allow you to fight to your apparently inescapable death. It can’t get worse, right? It does. The ground beneath you violently shakes and knocks half of your army on their asses. The earth you stand on is trembling and cracking, mimicking the most violent earthquake you could imagine. You are literally fighting 360 degrees around you. You can almost taste the metallic sting of your own blood. You close your eyes, wanting this nightmare to end; to wake up and see that this hellish scenario was all too overwhelming to be real…

(To be continued…)

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5 thoughts on “A Crowded Battlefield (Part 1)

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