By Harriman Nelson
New life, new journal.
Emmie has been reading my previous journals, and
was surprised to learn I’d only begun keeping a journal as a
therapy homework assignment by Doc at first. I just sort of
expanded the idea afterwards as a welcome (and private) source for
me to vent and such.
At first, I was embarrassed to let her read
them. They are, after all, my own personal and private thoughts and
remembrances. But she convinced me that I should let her share in
those thoughts and observations, at least past ones. She said she
wouldn’t ask to read the current journal, until it too, joins the
others as a fait’ accompli.
I was tempted to ask to see her diaries, if
she’d ever kept any, that is. But even I know that a female’s diary
is sacrosanct, even from her nearest and dearest. Doesn’t seem too
equitable. But there it is. I’m a male chauvinist and ‘old school’
so I won’t even ask.
Neither of us has completely recovered from our
injuries from the explosion aboard Lee’s sailboat some weeks ago.
But we’ve managed to enjoy our ‘honeymoon’, just the same. Even if
living on the institute grounds isn’t exactly the love nest that
Lee arranged for us at the Catalina Nature Reserve. But once our
bones are healed, and casts removed, we’ll see about going there
for a belated ‘get away’.
For now, Emmie and I’ve been
checking the classified advertisements and consulting realtors
regarding a new home. Emmie wants a ‘cottage by the sea’, but the
only beach-front residences we could find were mansions. Not
exactly our style. There were a few isolated ‘cottages’ further
down the coast from the Santa Barbara city limits, but they were
aged weather worn dwellings in need of demolition. The realtor was
anxious for us to purchase one or more of them anyway, in the hopes
we’d build our own cottage on the land. She stressed that several
hotel chains had already shown an interest in the properties. While
building our own place had merits, Emmie said the hoteliers were
welcome to them.
The press, of course, has been anxious to learn
if I’m going to keep my bride in an institute abode, (‘shameful’
according them’) or if I’ll purchase one of the more exclusive
homes Santa Barbara is known for.
Frankly, I don’t know what we’ll do
This morning, Emmie suggested we put our search
for a place on hold, and check the classifieds to find and purchase
a new sailboat for Lee. She was disappointed when I pointed out
that picking out a boat, like a car, would be best left to him.
It’s a guy thing. Besides, I’m not sure yet if the optical
prosthesis will enable Lee the necessary depth perception he’d be
required to have for both. In fact, the Dept. of Motor Vehicles
suspended his driver’s license after the loss of his eye. That
experimental prosthesis will have to prove itself as every bit as
good as a real eye in a vision and driving test.
We’ve been following Lee’s progress,
initial implant of the new orbital socket and the microscopic
surgery to attach it to what was left of his optic nerve.
He’s had to learn how to attach and remove
prosthesis eyeball into the socket. The engineers are also still
experimenting with a self-contained electrical system tied into the
body’s own electricity. But they say that kind of prosthesis is far
As for the ‘eyeball’ itself, well, Lee’s
to be optimistic, but it wasn’t the ‘hey presto’ result we’d all
hoped for. He’s only seeing light and shadows and sometimes
computer type pixels out of it but has been informed it may take
time for the brain to interpret things for him to ‘see’ more
normally out of it.
‘May’ being the worrisome word.
The prosthesis is a far cry from the drawing I
first saw. It’s a metallic sci-fi orb with indentations and
protrusions and the ‘iris’ reminds me of a digital camera. In time
newer versions might look
more like real eyes, but Lee says not to keep my fingers crossed.
It’s so hard not to break down whenever he
on the videophone, the image of him with the monstrosity in place.
My heart bleeds for him. He’s been blind before, totally blind, but
that was temporary. But this, well, if there’s no noticeable
improvement in vision, he’ll be partially blind as we define it,
Oh God, please, please, please, please, restore
his sight. I’m not asking for a miracle. Am I?
Emmie just interrupted my scribblings, and
handed me two round trip airline tickets, and confirmation of a
“Let’s go cheer him up,” she said.
But I knew her suggestion was more to cheer me
up. To see and speak with him in person. While there’s absolutely
nothing we can say or do to change things, at least we can be there
for him, up close and personal.
I’m still praying for that miracle, however.