For 48 hours, I’m accessorizing in a profoundly medical way. Cleverly disguised under my T-shirt are electrodes, wires and a little analysis machine, tracking the health of my heart. I feel like The Borg, a race of robots who absorbed human beings in Star Trek: The Next Generation. Their favorite line? “We are Borg. Resistance is futile.” So I’ve decided not to resist the varying performance of my body.
Why am I wearing this contraption? For weeks, I’ve avoided telling you what happened to me one fine Spring day. I usually enjoy sharing whatever’s going on with me but I was too scared to talk about this. I don’t know why.
It was an early afternoon and I decided to go to the gym, about a 30 minute drive from home. I glanced at the wall calendar and saw some appointments coming up. They were actually times when an auction company and Bibles For Missions were coming to remove stuff from my home. But all I saw was words that I didn’t understand. “I must be tired,” I reasoned. I got into Scarlet and headed off towards London.
I drove north from Union into St. Thomas. I knew what road I was on, and my driving skills were fine, but I felt “lost”, empty in the head. “It’s nothing, Bruce. Go work out” morphed into “It’s something, Bruce. Go to Emergency.”
I listened to the second voice.
After triage, a nurse soon came in to see me. “Just a few questions, sir. What year is it?” She was looking intently at me. I was looking intently at her. And no year came. “I don’t know.”
“How old are you?” I remembered I was born in 1949 and I tried to do the math, which is quite difficult when you don’t know what year it is. I told the nurse that I was moving into a new condo soon. “Where is that?” I racked my brain but never got close to the word “Belmont”.
They did an MRI on my head. Back in the bed, I thought of a female staff member at Wellington Fitness. I really like her. I searched for her name … nothing. The next day, I was to go to Ann Arbor, Michigan to watch the women pros play in a golf tournament. “I need my passport. It’s in the fire safe. I have no idea what the combination is.” Sadness fell over me. “Guess I’m not going. And is this it for me in life?”
An hour later, the results came back – normal. Blessed relief but still a horrible vacancy.
I drove home. I went to bed. And early the next morning I woke up with “99-72-36” on my lips. It was 2016. I was 67. I’m moving to Belmont.
What a huge unknown this body is. May I always cherish the moments of lucidity.