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Pauline Lerner

June 29, 2005 at 5:23 AM

It has been five days since my mugging, and I’m surprised at how long it’s taking for me to recover. My hands are shaking. When I try to talk about the mugging, my voice wavers and my throat feels like it’s tightening (asthma, probably). My heart is racing. I can’t concentrate. I keep forgetting things.

I played my violin this afternoon, but it was scary. My right hand was shaking so much that I couldn’t control my bow. Sometimes I bowed on two strings when I only wanted to bow on one string. My left hand was confused about where it should be to play in the first position. I really felt like I was losing it. Is this like senility? I used my stubbornness to best advantage and did not give up. I played everything very slowly, over and over, until I got it right, and then I quickened the pace. Then I got back on track. I played for about two hours. This has never happened to me before, and I hope it never happens again.

A few friends have been like light in the darkness. One of my neighbors told me to call him any time, up to 11 PM, when I’m at the entrance to my condo complex, and he’ll come and pick me up. He even drove to the grocery store to bring me home. Another friend has been responding very well to my need for hugs. My friends at have said such sympathetic, supportive things. It must be true what my hugging friend told me: People do care about me.

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