I Need A Battery Change…NOW?


I’ve been rolling along – sans my walker – engaging in a post-DBS flex of my muscles as I pursue a Masters in Health Care Administration. My DBS apparatus has been humming right along with me: electrodes nestled all snug in my brain, wires in place, chest batteries juiced up, remote control safely tucked away from fiddling fingers. Regular “tune ups” have ensured my DBS settings are not too hot, not too cold…but just right.

Flash forward to present day NYC, the COVID 19 panic is running rampage through our nation, social distancing the new normal. Amidst this whirlwind overwhelming the health care system, I need a battery change…NOW? Even my neurosurgeon is “social distancing.” How does he insert two new batteries in my chest via the phone?

My long-time nemesis, “Useless Why,” beckons. Why me? Why Dystonia? Why now? “Useless Why” invites me on a dead-end journey of unanswerable questions about why this is happening to me…now. But then again, doesn’t that same temptation lure us all as we collectively face COVID-19, an unprecedented and daunting challenge. Useful questions about how to get ourselves out of our untenable situations are beneficial – and uplifting. Useless questioning – why me, why now – that threatens to lead us down a path of victimization serves no higher purpose.

Whenever life threatens to spiral out of control, it’s so easy to fall into the “Useless Why” black hole. Now more than ever, we must give a positive attitude a good faith try so we don’t get zapped by “Useless Why.” Blushing brides postponing their big day, graduating seniors who won’t be marching in May. Socialites trapped in their apartments alone, star-crossed lovers rendezvousing by phone. Dystonia patients in need of Botox injections biding their time, wondering how long it’ll be before they start to feel fine. As we struggle with panic, let those sleeping dogs lie. Let’s not become paralyzed by the specter of “Useless Why.”

9 responses to “I Need A Battery Change…NOW?

  1. Great post, Pam!

    You didn’t even mention the other nightmare going on with you! You really have the best attitude.

    Sending love, and hugs, and let us all know if you feel like talking.

    XO P


  2. Denise Gaskell

    Thinking of you in prayers with love my dear friend. You’re my inspiration!

  3. Love your thoughts. Well written. Be sure to message your Neurosurgeon about your need for a battery change. Maybe they can fit you in some way. Nobody wants you to run down & lose your energizer bunny. I gave that advice to a friend who really needed her Botox shots $, sure enough, they brought her in right away. Some things, including Botox, can be postponed but it can be devastating to some people. Wishing you the best. ❤️

    • Hello Carol, Unfortunately the hospital where my neurosurgeon works has halted all elective surgery, which is what a battery change is considered. Of course, I want my surgery when it is safe and the hospital has adequate supplies. Critical patients first during a time like this. We lowered my settings to hopefully extend my battery life. Please stay safe. xxx Pam

  4. Always good to read your posts, Pam! I was actually scheduled for my shots this morning, but the botox clinic has closed its doors for now. When symptoms flare, I’m reminded of the many years before being diagnosed that I struggled without any treatment at all. I feel grateful that, even though that treatment is postponed for now, I can look forward to relief sometime in the foreseeable future. Sending good wishes to you as we get though this crisis a day at a time.

  5. Hi, Pam – I just read your post and I can’t believe your batteries picked such a bad time to run low. I missed seeing you in Houston when I was stuck home with Type A flu – nothing compared to the Covid 19. I’m thinking of you and hoping you’ll be able to get your botox and new batteries soon. Please stay safe and healthy. I hope I’ll see you this summer.

    • Hi Barb, So lovely to hear from you. I hope that you and your family are safe and well. This is quite the challenging time and we are all adjusting to a new way of life. I only hope and pray we will soon welcome a more normalized environment. Love and hugs. ❤️💗💕 Pam

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