As usual, I could pretty accurately evaluate how the day would be when I woke up. It was about 7 AM and I could tell that I was feeling stronger, but I didn't want to get out of bed and, after Marty and I talked for a bit, I fell asleep for another hour. I still didn't feel like getting up, so Marty brought me some tea and cinnamon toast, and I ate and read the papers.
My friend Sally had said she'd call once she woke up (her plane arrived from California last night); she called around eleven and Marty went to pick her up. I had put the bi-pap mask back on as my breathing felt a little labored, and Sally sat on my bed and we talked, catching up on our lives and on developments in our work in the psychiatric survivor movement. After a while I took the mask off and put on the nasal cannula--the mask covers a lot of my face, so Sally said "I can see you now."
Marty asked whether I thought I was feeling up to going out to a restaurant, and I started thinking it was possible. I was scheduled to do David Oaks's radio show live at two (David had taped an interview in case I wasn't feeling up to doing the show live), so I said it would have to be after that, but that first I wanted to take a shower. I'm not even sure how long it's been since I showered or went outside. I can manage the shower by myself; the hard part is getting a comb through my hair afterwards, but Sally did that for me.
The radio show went really well. I was the first guest, and then Dan Fisher from the National Empowerment Center (http://www.power2u.org), where I used to work, joined in, and there were also phone ins and e-mails. All the shows are archived on MindFreedom's Website, http://www.mindfreedom.org. I really enjoyed talking about the issues that I have worked on for so many years, and using the model I have been developing linking how hospice services are delivered with the kind of mental health system we envision.
By the time the show was over I was hungry. I got dressed (something else I haven't done for a long time), Marty filled my portable oxygen tank, and we were ready to go. I suggested a somewhat upscale Chinese restaurant that we both like, and we had a great meal (with leftovers to take home), and more great conversation. Marty talked a lot about the work he does with organizations promoting peace and justice between Israelis and Palestinians. The fact that we both do social justice work, although in such different areas, is one of the things that originally drew Marty and me together.
When we had finished eating and talking, I was pretty tired, but not exhausted. We dropped Sally off at her hotel (which is just a few blocks from my house), and I've been resting since we got home. Sally will be back tomorrow; it would be great if I could get outside again, but I've just got to take whatever comes. Although it wasn't yet warm today, it was definitely milder than it has been, and I saw snowdrops blooming in our garden, and green sprouts of what will be tulips in a few weeks. Spring is definitely coming, although in its New England way it is sure to tease us a few times before arriving for good.