You’ve probably heard about the snowfall totals south of Buffalo, New York this week. My understanding is in some areas, it approaches 7 feet. The same lake effect snow event produced large amounts of snow, where I live, east of Lake Ontario. The big difference is the fact that Lake Ontario’s eastern end is quite a bit wider than the end of Lake Erie. As a result of that, the wind direction here can oscillate and spread the snow over a much larger area reducing the totals in any one place. Usually when there is a lake effect storm off Lake Ontario the major accumulation is south of us. However, the snow bands were moving over our area most every day. Because of the force of the wind blowing, drifting is quite a problem. New York’s governor has declared Jefferson County as well as a number of other counties in a state of emergency.
One of the hardest adjustments I’ve had to make is the confinement the winter causes for me. Prior to my accident I was very active in the winter months jogging, downhill skiing, cross country skiing and snowshoeing were all winter activities that I loved participating in. The quadriplegia, resulting from my accident almost 16 years ago, had a tremendous impact on my lifestyle. I have struggled over the years to regain control of my quality of life. It hasn’t been easy, but I think I’ve done a pretty good job persevering.
Without a doubt the activity I still love the most is hunting. Harvesting game was never the major reason I hunted. The time I spend outdoors sitting in a blind is what gives me a chance to renew my inner self. When the weather cooperates, I usually spend 4 to 5 hours a day sitting outside. It’s an unusual day when nature doesn’t share some of her special happenings with me. Another one of the beneficial effects on me is the impact on my mind of the solitude around me. That’s hard to contrive in my regular daily life.
I know my wife is right when she tells me I need to get out more, but out where? Going to the movies, out to dinner or any of the number of similar activities just doesn’t do it for me. It never did and it never will. It can be a sore subject at times between my wife and me.
I couldn’t wait for the blizzard to stop so I could return to hunting since there are several weeks left in New York State deer season. But conditions are preventing this from happening. My four-wheel-drive wheelchair will not be able to navigate through the drifts and get me where I want to go even though it’s not very far away.
It’s a constant struggle to keep this frustrating situation from developing into depression. As I read over this blog, I’m sure it seems petty to most able-bodied individuals. Only another individual who is paralyzed knows the struggle we go through much of the time to maintain a positive attitude. As I said in the title sometimes it’s pretty tough. Weather Bureau just issued another Lake Effect Advisory