Archives for category: health

My duplex neighbors were partying hard last night. I slept hard, but poorly. I woke, abruptly, at 6:30 am (on a Saturday), for no obvious reason. I got up and made coffee, waking my Traveling Partner, too. This morning I take a few minutes to wake up slowly, in the quiet of my studio. I can see the CPU fan on my computer spin; I don’t hear it over my tinnitus. I am in pain. My arthritis does not appreciate the higher humidity of recent days, and I ache. I’m stiff when I move. My head hurts. Rough morning, physically, and I’m a bit cross over it – thus the self-enforced moments of solitude, giving me a chance to be a better human being before I have a chance to snarl at my Traveling Partner over something pointless or petty. It’s a practice that works for me.

I get through the waking up portion of the day one practice at a time.

My “to do list” for the weekend is now sorted into “outside stuff” and “inside stuff”. I’m not certain why I bothered with doing that; it’s obvious from the listed tasks, and they were already grouped thusly. Simply proceeding down the list would like have been sufficient. Still, it seemed, in that moment, a distinction worth making. I was not yet entirely awake. lol

I sip my coffee, correct my posture, stand up, stretch, sit down, breathe, exhale, relax… and correct my posture again. It doesn’t do anything for the pain immediately. It’ll help later on if I’m not slumped over my keyboard like some sort of mythical writing monster.

I find my mind wandering to brunches out. I fucking miss brunch. lol Life in the time of pandemic… Brunch is the thing I think I miss most.

I gaze into my half empty coffee mug. I’m already thinking about a second cup. It’s already time to begin again. There’s an entire day ahead of me, and plenty to do. 🙂

Another Monday in The Time of Pandemic. Sipping coffee. Waking up. I’m groggy this morning, a combination of spring allergies I regularly say I don’t have (and which generally don’t annoy me at all), and the antihistamine I took for those symptoms, yesterday, after returning home from a drive in the countryside in the spring. The cottonwood trees have released their fluff into the air, and it drifts along the edges of sidewalks. Definitely spring.

A work day ahead. A busy Monday. A long “to do list” waiting for my attention. A universe of distractions from all those things. The weekend was characterized by a handful of profoundly positive moments that fill me with encouragement and hope, and a single noteworthy disappointing setback, from which I’ve already “recovered”, and moved on. Balance in all things? lol The week begins fairly well, I suppose. My coffee is hot, made well, and satisfying. The can of fizzy water also on my desk is cold, refreshing, and tasty. The sound of my Traveling Partner in the living room, also awake quite early, fills me with comfort and contentment. Things “feel okay”. 🙂

A fit of sneezing. A sip of water. A sip of coffee. A routine morning, more or less, and time to begin again. 🙂

I slept badly. Restless dreams. Woke ahead of the alarm, feeling… alarmed. I turned over and got comfortable again, just in time to hear the alarm go off. I felt stiff and sore getting up, which has persisted beyond a few minutes of yoga. I made my coffee in the dim ambient lighting of various household indicator lights, and a small lamp left on. The morning feels chilly, and my bones ache. The pain in my neck is a pain in the neck, slowly becoming a headache. I remind myself to take something for that, before the work day begins. I sit quietly, for awhile, wondering what’s missing from my experience of the morning, this morning. Something feels missing

…At some point, after some reflection, I accept that I just “don’t feel into it” today… like… disengaged from my experience, and generally… uninterested. I try to tempt my consciousness to be a tad more joyful… or at least minimally appreciative to have another shot at living life… Minecraft? I shrug silently. “Whatever.” How’s the coffee? Fine, I guess. No enthusiasm. I’m in pain, and I slept badly, and this entire day ahead of me, from the vantage point of right here, right now, can just… yeah, I’m not so into it, this morning. I at least manage to avoid feeling altogether bleak.

So…okay. New day, old practices. I breathe deeply, and sit more upright. I exhale and feel my aching cramped shoulder, perpetually twisted in an impression of being a rock of some kind, relax just a bit. Another breath. Another exhalation. I let thoughts drift in, and I let each one go. The pain in my shoulder is connected to the pain in my neck, that becomes the headache at the base of my skull – and just on the left side, leaving the right side taunting me with what life could feel like if I didn’t hurt like this. I tear up a bit. Breathe. Exhale. Relax. I let that go, too. These honest tears that threaten to fall aren’t shameful in anyway, I’m just… also not into that. lol

Time spent on meditation helps me gain some perspective. I know this is only “emotional weather”, and may source with unremembered dreams and poor quality sleep. It’ll pass. I remind myself to be kind – to myself, too – and give myself some support and consideration. The sky beyond my window reveals a gray rainy-looking day ahead. No wonder I hurt so much, I think to myself. Damn, …this headache, though…

I sip my coffee, and half-listen to a video I only half-wanted to watch, anyway. It doesn’t seem to matter. I find myself rather earnestly wanting to simply fold up into a pile of warm heavy blankets and just… cry. Or sleep. There is a work day ahead of me, and much adulting to do, on an utterly ordinary routine day in this life in the time of pandemic, and it’s not going to wait on a headache. I sigh quietly, and breathe. Exhale. Relax. Let that shit go… again. Feels like it may be a long day, today. I remind myself to let the moments unfold without pre-loading them with expectations and assumptions, and to give the day a chance to be more than this moment is, right now.

Practicing healthy practices that support emotional wellness day-to-day doesn’t mitigate my fundamental humanity, or erase the challenges I have – and my results vary. There is no “perfect” to get to, no “finish line” to cross with a champion’s raised arms, triumphant in victory. The journey is the destination… and sometimes the path is rough going, and poorly illuminated. This too will pass. It’s a moment. Like other moments, it is finite, and of limited consequence taken all on its own. I make a half-assed attempt at shrug. One day of many – sooner or later there will be one that isn’t characterized by contentment and joy. That’s just real. I let that go, too.

Another deep cleansing breath. I exhale. I relax. I think about a second coffee. It’s time to begin again.

Lovely long weekend finally ended. It’s back to work this morning, somewhat reluctantly, maybe, or just a bit disengaged… It’s Monday. I’ll get through this. More coffee? More coffee.

After meditation and yoga, I sit down with my coffee, mulling over the cost of vanity. There’s even YouTube content that’s relevant. Well, generally speaking – it may not be the ideal fit to all circumstances, but it tends to lend itself to general thoughts on the cost of vanity. lol Vanity is expensive. I mean, well… more expensive than being wholly practical. That seems obvious. Aesthetics matter, though; we each have an idea of what we find “beautiful”, and a lot of different things go into that.

…There are more urgent matters. Life in the time of pandemic affects a lot of things we don’t necessarily experience directly, ourselves.

I sip my coffee and my thoughts move on. My mind wanders, seeking any reasonable distraction from the work day ahead. It’s an important day (for my team and I), and a major project moves another step forward. It’s also the busiest day of the week. So much going on! I face the day feeling fairly prepared… but I don’t really want to deal with it yet. Part of the push-pull of my attention here and now is my mind trying to reach for that “work stuff” now, when I have an hour or so still available for me. I breathe, exhale, relax, and let that work stuff go – again.

Good coffee this morning…

I open up my “to do list”, which is entirely focused on things I want (or need) to do (for me, or here at home, but definitely not employment related).  This list has definitely gotten smaller, even though I add to it almost every day; I do more than I add, every week. I look over the list with a certain feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment. A lot has gotten done since mid-March, when the pandemic “shelter in place” advisement came for us, here. I eye those “least approachable tasks” with some reluctance. I’m running out of other shit to get done. LOL I give some thought to each remaining task, and consider what about each one has that task still sitting on this list after weeks of doing things here at home. There are things to learn about myself hinted at (shouted?), and it’s worth learning those things.

Another Monday. Another chance to begin again.

It’s early. Some yoga. Some exercise. Some coffee. The day begins slowly. I watch a video that illustrates human failures; it doesn’t matter which one. Humans being human. Humans pointing out failures. Humans reacting badly to having failures pointed out. Fail sauce just everywhere. So human. This coffee is good. I pause a moment and ponder good coffee vs dreadful coffee, and how often the only obvious difference in getting one or the other is a matter of human effort, and the success or failure of that effort. Humans being human, sometimes the coffee is… not good, at all. 🙂

Yesterday was a strange day. I mean, pretty normal in most respects, until a hastily, carelessly, place canister of fuel (for camping) dropped from a high shelf and whacked my Traveling Partner in the head. His day was disrupted, just as my work day was ending. There was definitely some bleeding involved, and our evening was spent nursing each other’s individual discomfort (he was injured, and the stress and anxiety of his injury resulted in an unexpected wholly unnecessary headache of migraine proportions for me), and we spent our shared time hanging out quietly. Pretty sure we had something for dinner… I don’t recall what. It wasn’t an important detail. What is important is how well we cared for each other. That really matters.

I woke ahead of the alarm, listening to my partner’s breathing for a few minutes before I got up, feeling safe and loved. That matters, too. It’s a nice way to begin a new day… although I could so easily just go back to sleep, this morning. I yawn, and laugh quietly.

Another day begins. I’ll be delighted for it to be utterly routine in all respects, no excitement required or sought. lol It’s still so early… I finish this coffee, and consider making another. It already feels like time to begin again.