By Doug Ankerman
Relationships come in all forms. Personal. Family. Professional. Casual. The list runs as long as your arm.
Each relationship, different in its own way. And each, as unique as the next.
We try our darndest to be careful with words and actions not to lead, disrupt or inflame. Care must be exercised to keep a relationship in its particular form — as crossovers can mean trouble.
Add multiple sclerosis into the fray and judgements can be blurred. Thoughts jumbled. Feelings fuzzed.
That is why I am thankful for two very special relationships in my life.
One, with a local auto parts store. And the other, the neighborhood plumber’s supply.
There, we experience connections on a higher plain. A shared silence of understanding.
Not being handy, nor mechanical, I am mummified to explain what I need or am attempting to do.
Mostly, I shuffle into their establishment with a pathetic look on my face.
A blank stare of incompetence.
From my pocket, I produce a worn-out part, some gadget-gizmo. I don’t know its name or purpose. I simply put it on their dirty counter and let them go to work.
Not a word is exchanged as they see the desperation in my eyes. They will gather up everything I need. Then carefully explain how to complete my back-handed attempt at the project.
Of course, having MS, their words fly over my head like Blue Angels at an air show.
(They are seeing my dumb face pictured above, remember?)
So, they simplify their explanation. Even drawing me a crude diagram on the back of the receipt.
Satisfied, I shuffle back to my car and home again with new-found confidence.
Balsa-wood bravado. Paper-thin capability. But it’s all good.
What we have is special indeed. A relationship that’s…yeah, it’s complicated.
*Doug writes about multiple sclerosis and other stuff on his humor blog at myoddsock.com