A woman doing laundry

I remember my first meeting with a rehab counselor, Lena Ricks (RIP, Lena). Lena asked me, “what do you want?” I answered reflexively and with such sincerity my words made me cry, “I just want to be normal,” I told her.

Lena used her stronger arm to adjust herself in her chair. She used a power chair due to the limitations resulting from having Polio as a child. She leaned forward, poked a finger (kinda hard) into my chest, “normal” she said, “is a setting on a washing machine. If you and I are going to work together, you’re going to have to wish for something more than normal.” Lena was bad a**. She had a major influence on the trajectory of my life, and I suspect I got a chunk of my Nag-itude from her.

So get this clear in your own head too, “there is no such thing as normal.”


A little P.S. When I went to see Lena, I was just approaching 30 years old. I had avoided eye doctors and any kind of help for over 10 years. Michigan Rehab was the first place I went when I decided I was going to “try to get my life together.” I can’t even remember why I decided to go there first. I am grateful I went and even more grateful I ended up on Lina’s case load!