I live now with a catheter in my bladder, draining my urine into a bag that I drain several times a day. I have a night bag and a leg bag. The holding bags and their tubes offer their own challenges about swapping and draining them. Given the catheter’s retention location on my upper thigh, it also makes bowel movements an interesting exercise. Bending and walking are also problematic.
Getting the catheter in was an experience. Living with it is another. Having it helps me respect the medical events and treatments that people endure. I’ve had it good as such things go. Although they sound like they’re something — broken and displaced wrist, broken neck, stitches in my skull, ear lobe stitched back on, hernia, toe-tip cut off by a lawnmower, bronchitis, mono, broken ankles, broken teeth, etc. — they’re small things in the greater order of existence and endurance. Better, they’re temporary, with end dates.
Our warfare kills on large, constant scales, and the warfare results in people without limbs, scarred by burns, and shattered by trauma. Many people endure chronic or terminal diseases, relentless illnesses that erode their strength and energy, chipping away from who they were and what they could do, haunting them until they’re dead. Others are abused and betrayed, resulting in destroyed mental and emotional faculties. Others are born with handicaps and genetic deficiencies. I’m fortunate. My afflictions are short-lived and allow me to observe and learn from them.
This catheter is expected to be in me seven to ten days. It impacts my writing process because I can’t walk as I’ve done for lo these several years. Yet, I have to write. I must find a way to sit down and put words into the computer. I’ve not written in four days. The need doesn’t go away. It builds as the muses feed ideas that I explore. Scenes explode into my mindscape. Dialogue is heard.
I originally developed the write and walk process to enable my writing efforts in my military career’s final year. I expanded on it when I was working for startups, and then for Tyco and IBM, the companies that swallowed the startups, carving out time for myself and putting writing as a higher priority in my daily to-do list. I needed a process to remove me from sales, marketing, and product development, and put me in a frame of thinking to create fiction.
A new process is needed because the dream and desire to write remains. Got my hot tea. I’m in my home office. A cat is snoring nearby. Another is asleep on my feet. Time to write like crazy, at least one more time.