I know that I have stated many times before that I am pretty lucky in that I have two incredible sisters.  Today, I just want to remind the world how completely amazing Sarah is.  As many of you are probably aware, Sarah works in a lab at UNC that focuses mechanisms for pain. She studies pain at the cellular and neurological level.  In an ironic twist of fate, those same neurons that Sarah studies have turned on her lately, as she had suffered some sort of unknown neurological trauma (according to Sarah, the damage was to the “axillary nerve”) in the past few weeks that has resulted in atrophying shoulder muscles (also I learn from Sarah that it is the ” deltoid” and “teres minor”) that she cannot control or use.  For Sarah, who is, of course, the most hardworking, in-shape person I know, this hasn’t been the easiest injury to negotiate. With it, she can’t do the thing that paid her way through college, namely, swim.  However, in typical Sarah fashion, she finds contentment in the parts of her workout regimen that she can control.  That is one reason why she is amazing; she refuses to dwell on what she cannot do right now.

Here is the other part that makes Sarah particularly amazing: Because of her expertise, she was able to diagnose herself even before she went to a doctor.  She knew that it was something neurological.  She also understands, possibly even better than the doctor she sees, what to expect for recovery. Why? Because Sarah is expert enough to read case studies of similar injuries. So she knows that it may be possible, like the West Point cadet who sustained a similar injury after a three-hour long on the ground shooting exercise, that she may recover in as little as ten weeks. However, she also is aware that it may take six months to recover, or it may never recover at all.  The fact is, Sarah isn’t one of those people who has to resort to bad medical information on the internet; instead, she can read and understand the complicated scientific studies published in the premier medical journals.  She also has displayed that trait that  really admire in people in seeking out more information and being satisfied in understanding that this more information may not always bear happy news (but not despairing over that information).  She just views it as an opportunity to learn some patience and humility. 

So on that note, here is a picture of happy, dancing Sarah:

On an entirely unrelated note, I loved this article about grammar that was in the Washington Post. It makes me feel better to know that my atrocious use of language on many occasions isn’t the worst that is out there. Wait, I think that distresses me too. I think we all should despair a little bit about what is happening with language.

One thought on “Strained

  1. This exactly echoes my thoughts about what Sarah has been going through. You put it so well. I could ask for nothing more as a mother than to see such devotion on the part of a sister. I have three wonderful daughters who continue to bring joy to my soul.

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