My blog is now at nextchapter175.wordpress.com
I really do believe that I left a part of my memory in the hospital! I completely forgot to post this !Sunday, after church, we shared a wonderful lunch with friends from London (Shirley Nakamura) and from San Francisco (Vivian (Nakamura) Ettinger and her husband, Bruce). Viv and Bruce have a condo in Rancho Mirage, just up the road from Pal Springs, where they spend six months a year. Shirl comes down for several months each winter. Shirl, Viv and I go way back; Shirl and I actually attended Lord Roberts Public School in London together, then high school at Central. Viv knew Art from Central, and Art may have taught their younger sister, Gloria. To complete the circle, Shirl taught my niece and nephew, Jen and Neal, in grade 1! What a great visit! We even got some more grapefruits, from their tree.
Today, we went to lunch at a place called Babe’s, recommended by another friend who winters down here sometimes. From the pictures, can you guess what kind of food they serve? The place is located in a beautiful mall, and I bought a new hat! I normally hate hats, but this one seems to be kind of grabby, doesn’t it? And more mountains to look at on the way home.
…. but this one comes with a sculpture garden that is truly an oasis in the middle of the city, right next to a busy road that disappears when one is settled beside one of the water features here. Some pictures… I hope.
It looks like it might work!! Changed Browsers, as recommended by the support people at WordPress. These are the outdoor garden pics, without captions. Just immerse yourself in them. Indoor ones and those from previous days will appear soon.
Do click on the pictures, especially the water features, remembering that the city is just beyond the trees. Relax, listen to the waterfall. Take care of yourself.
One good thing…Camp Day at Tim’s followed by tea with Michael. The rest of the day has been kind of blah. Food program OK for part of the day. My shift at Tim’s and a brief walk at the mall constitute my exercise. Maybe tomorrow will be a better day. Coffee with brother Art in the morning, then who knows.
It’s time for me to be honest about a couple of things. My friend and adopted brqother Peter showed me that you can actually write about some of the things that are way down deep in your soul without completely destroying yourself. So here goes.
I am totally frustrated and deeply afraid. I’m frustrated by the fact that my recovery progress is so slow as to be unnoticeable sometimes. I’m also frustrated because I believe (I think) that unless I do my exercises, my progress will continue to be slow.
What frightens me is more fundamental. I am afraid that no matter what I do, I will never get any better. At first, I thought I had reached a plateau, much like those of us who work at weight loss experience. When the plateau-ing (word creation?) occurs in weight loss, many of us become completely discouraged and many will quit whatever program they are following. Others persevere and eventually start losing again.
Trouble is, this is my life and I can’t quit it. I even doubt that this is merely a plateau. My happiness depends on my being able to do more than I can do now. When I thought I had reached a plateau, I guess I believed that if I got back to my exercises and did them seriously, I would eventually move forward again. Now that I feel that this is not a plateau but the end, the best it’s going to get, I’m terrified. I would have to reconfigure my life and find new ways to do things and to be me. That is truly frightening! I know I haven’t conveyed the depth of the fear and the impact of my fears very well. These are not the kinds of things I usually share.
More frightening for me, however, is the nagging thought that it — the whole hospital thing — will happen again, only this time, the outcome would not be as good. I really don’t want to go there right now. I don’t want to actually confront this thought yet. So I won’t. When I allow it to penetrate my consciousness during the day, it also infects my dreams. That means my sleep is even less refreshing and the almost crippling fatigue that characterizes most of my days gets even worse. Then I’m too tired to even contemplate exercises and the cycle continues.
Please continue to pray (if you do that sort of things), send positive thoughts and encouraging words. If we see one another, a hug would help, but until then, send electronic ones.
Sorry for the mis-post of yesterday. I have no idea how it happened. A certain someone tells me that posting it today doesn’t count as today’s post so here I am. Thanks buddy!
After doing three loads of laundry, preparing two meals, getting the chequebook balanced and making three hotel reservations, everything hurt. My shoulder was really acting up but it was my wrist and thumb that were the most painful. It’s hard to grip anything … toothbrush, pen, fork, knife, teacup, etc. … and to shake out wet laundry and fold dry stuff. And it’s hard to type.
I took the day off from exercise. We’re going to St. Jacobs for the day tomorrow and I want the hurt to be less. So there!
No short jokes, please. After a great morning, including a visit with Michael, I managed to re-aggravate (again) my right wrist at lunch. It doesn’t take much; I just picked up my knife wrong. Then I did something to my shoulder (during my nap, believe it or not). The pain from both is pretty intense so I had to modify my exercise routine beause there was no way I could manage any of the arm things. Managed most of the leg stuff and 10 minute on the bike. Someone please convince me that it’s all worth it.
Thanks, Michael, for a wonderful hour of conversation, spirit-lifting, ego-boosting and just plain fun.
The Christians among you will have some sense that last Thursday marked the beginning of Lent. For some, Lent means simply “giving something up,” something like coffee or sweets or meat, something that makes one feel virtuous. Don’t get me wrong; making any sacrifice for 40 days is a good thing, no matter what it is. I won’t get into the meaning of the sacrifice to the individual because that would reveal my cynicism about the whole thing.
This year, our minister asked us to consider doing something for Lent that had deeper personal meaning for us as Christians. He suggested things like setting aside time for Bible reading, for prayer, for volunteering, for helping others, for considering how we spend our money. To be honest, I had lost track of the days and thought that Ash Wednesday (the day before Lent starts) was the following week. Doug pointed out my error when I asked if he wanted to go to the Ash Wednesday service at our church. At that point, I made what I think was a pretty bold statement.
It’s important to note here that I had been sick the week before this conversation, with fever, vomiting, chills and incredible fatigue. The bug had disappeared the day before, so I was feeling a bit more chipper. Perhaps that explains the boldness of my statement. I think it’s also interesting that we were on the way to an appointment with my family doctor, and that I had a long list of things I wanted to check with her.
OK, OK already. I can hear you all saying it. What’s the bold statement? Here it is:
For Lent, I am giving up being sick. That’s it; sick no more. Those of you who follow this blog and followed its predecessor will realize that this statement represents a goal in my life. I wanted to be free of my need to “be sick” in order that I be the centre the centre of attention. After 4 months in hospital where my sickness was entirely not my creation nor my choice, I realized that being the centre of that much attention was not what I wanted. Hence the statement that I am giving up being sick. This doen’t mean that I won’t have the occasional cold or other “real” illness; it means that I won’t create sickness for myself.
For me this is a huge thing. I am committed for 40 days, but it is my hope and prayer that I get so used to not being sick that I will keep it up forever.
(Not proofread…I am tired)
A reminder from Peter that I had sort of dropped out of sight (blog) again, so I thought it was time for a brief update. Things are progressing reasonably well. I have abandoned the walker, except for outside, especially in the snow. Around the house, I seem to be able to manage without any aids, and indoors away from home, I use a cane. I’m still not eating well, although I really am trying. Exercises to strengthen my legs are crucial to my successful rehab, Despite that, I am finding it hard to do them regularly. I go for walks at the mall, but have trouble spending an equal amount of time working specifically on my legs. There are still some issues about medications that we’re working through, but all in all, 4 weeks after leaving hospital, I reckon I’m doing OK.
Worry not, my friends. I will get back to regluar posting as soon as my motivation for any kind of regular activity returns. While I hate to blame the weather, it does tend to make me feel crappy when it is so cold and blustery that going out becomes a totally intimidating chore. Maybe that’s the whole problem …
You reached the end of the first phase. Join me on the next one at http://wp.me/4YuFV
Let me know if the link doesn’t work. Actually, let me know if it does!