For the past two weeks, I’ve experienced a situation that threatened my inner peace. My contentment. This posting recounts the highlights of the saga!
About three weeks ago, I signed up to use an alert system. Because of the vertigo caused by Meniere’s Disease and because my compromised vision has affected my balance, I opted for a “fall” pennant to wear around my neck. It would alert the company if I fell and perhaps became unconscious and so couldn’t press the recessed button. I could also press the button if I needed other medical help.
The box with the equipment—help monitor with aerial, fall pennant, regular pennant, wrist pennant, and lockbox—arrived a week later. However, before I even opened the box to activate the system, three firemen showed up at my door at 7:00 am because they’d received an alert. Relieved that I was okay, they were puzzled by an alert from an un-activated system.
That afternoon, my sister-in-law activated the system for me. However, the problem persisted. Within the next ten days, I received seven calls from the company saying they’d gotten an alert from my home. Was I okay?
Each time, I told them I was fine and that I’d pressed no button. In fact, I wasn’t even wearing the pennant. I’d laid it flat on a table with a ceramic cup over it so that it wouldn’t be accidentally jostled by one of the cats.
I felt as if I were living with a time bomb.
At any time, whether I was in the house or not, some ghost, goblin, or poltergeist might press the button. Or . . . more likely . . . a piece of defective equipment might go off. If I weren’t in the house to answer the call from the alert company, the firemen would show up. If that happened more than twice, I’d be paying an extra fee.
Daily I feared getting a call during the early hours of the morning and not hearing it. Because of Meniere’s, I’m deaf in my left ear. So if I sleep on my right ear, I can’t hear the phone. If the company called to say they’d gotten an alert, I wouldn’t hear the phone ringing. The company would then call the fire station. That’s what happened when the unopened box was on my kitchen table. I didn’t want it happening again. So my sleep became restless.
Midway through the two-week period, I endeavored to cancel the service, but I let the rep convince me that all would be well. Yet nothing changed.
So this past Saturday morning, after being awakened at 1:10 am with an alert, I canceled the contract. I’ve sent back the equipment and, after mailing it, shouted “Free at last! Free at last!” as I reentered my home. Last night I slept well with no worry that I’d be receiving a card to interrupt my dreaming.
The idea of an alert now that I have more physical problems was a good one—but the actuality stressed my life. I’m now trusting that “all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be exceedingly well” as Julian of Norwich said so many centuries ago. Her words got me through Meniere’s. They will, I trust, be with me as I journey into an older and older version of Dee Ready.
That experience left be bereft of contentment for two weeks. During that time a maelstrom of emotions swept through me: frustration, anger, tiredness, confusion, exasperation. I also felt a great deal of trepidation, but little genuine contentment. It’s contentment that I hope to write about next week. Peace.
Photograph from Wikipedia