Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Volunteer Spirit Lives On... ...

A very good friend of mine recently posed me an extremely valid question. How is my Volunteer spirit doing in light of my condition? Very good question as I am really really starting to learn that I am not who I was. However finding out who I am, now, is very confusing.

As an example, I attended my church's Outreach Comittee meeting. Our job seems simple, help to focus the Volunteer/Charitable spirit of the church into various productive activities. For instance, the Dover Children's Home or, the St Bernard Project or, Dover Friendly Kitchen or, helping End 68 Hours of Hunger or, on and on and on. The Volunteer Spirit thrives on at St John's United Methodist Church.

The only one of these projects I have not been deeply involved with is St Bernard's. I was supposed to go out on one of the mission trips however taking a year off for recovery has interrupted the plans. In fact, my recovery has interferred with many of these projects. Or at least my capacity in them.

So once again, How is my condition affecting my Volunteer spirit?

I don't know.

For instance, one of the topics was the Crop Walk. It is coming up and needs to be planned for, like all things. However the emotional distress I felt came from the 2012 Crop Walk in Dover N.H. Note the date of that walk. It happened almost one (1) month, to the date, after my accident. I was just coming out of Coma then. What's that got to do with anything? I was my church's project leader for the Crop Walk. I went to meetings, did drives, got people fired up to come out and walk. Turns out I had to spend my time learning how to swallow food again instead.

So, instead of facing the discussion on the Crop Walk (which I couldn't) I stated that I want to be involved however with my memory skills so spotty that I could not lead the project again. Not really surprising though. Before my accident I was tapped to be the Chairperson of the Outreach Committee. Even after my accident, the Church Council voted on approving my Chairperson-ship. A wonderful man was ready to "assist" me in chairing the council however I resigned my chair in favor of him. (He is not entirely grateful ;-))

Why? Well I am honored and flattered at the gesture. It was not an empty one, not at all. I know the heart of my fellow christians and they have been beside me through recovery every step of the way. It was the flattered feeling that made me realize something. The position is not about Ego. Granted there is a lot of work and planning that needs to be done however the truth is that my skills are not up to snuff in that regard. For Heaven's sake I would not want anyone out there to suffer simply because I forget to schedule discussion. Added to which, I was less than three (3) months injured when the honor was bestowed upon me. I typed my resignation with such poinency and dignity that it was reluctantly accepted, at three (3) months!

That is an important aspect, this Friday, the 23rd of August, makes my recovery at just eleven (11) months. And I can clearly state that I am not sufficient to the task now. In fact, I realized that I was insufficient for many of the tasks that we discussed.

Not insufficient mentally or emotionally. Sadly socially is my weakness. Not just my sometimes "quirky" behaviors either. Just from the barrier that exists in the collective mind that is Society. School program? I've passed background checks many times, nothing of note here. Oh wait, he's brain injured. Down Check.

I could list out all the down checks I see in my future but I don't want to cry tonight. I am already having a bad day, why make it worse?

That brings me to my trouble as a Christian. I wrangle with anger, a lot, but it is not at my accident. Or not primarily focused at my accident. I can not begin to tell you how much of myself I used to repress. I used to be very very careful in expressing opinion. And ideas, shucks I became so skilled at planting ideas that many of them don't remotely have my name attached. But that's okay, just as long as good work gets done, who cares about credit?

The sad truth of this world is that no good deed goes unpunished. That I used to take within stride, after all that was just part of the sacrifice that a good soul faces. Facing it straight on just makes you a Brave soul as well. However, I used to be sufficient enough to protect my wife from such aggravations. No more, in fact today was dominated by the actions of a nefarious neighbor.

Such is life. And such is my repeated prayer, "HELP".

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