Archives for posts with tag: taking care of this fragile vessel

I was too sick most of yesterday to maintain any excitement about the car in my driveway. Actually, when I first woke up during day light hours and noticed it there from my vantage point at the kitchen sink, I initially wondered who was here, before realizing my error and remembering the car. lol

There was a point, during the later portion of something I am inclined to call “mid-morning” (although for me it is actually, most days, well into the day because I am such an early riser), when I did feel well enough and restlessly housebound enough to want very much to go… to the store? Somewhere. I wanted to go somewhere. To feel forward momentum. To be out of the house for a few minutes. To have a purpose and direction that had to do with any else than blowing my nose again, or making yet another cup of tea, or broth. So… to the store?

I made a short list. Put clothes on. Got into the car and then I got honest with myself. I was restless, ill, and bored, and I just wanted to drive the car. lol I didn’t need anything at the store. Certainly, I didn’t need to spend the money. I pulled out of the driveway with care, and pointed the car in the direction of rural roads. I drove around, through forests and meadows and farmland, contentedly counting on GPS to get me home once I’d satisfied my desire to drive the car and be out of the house a bit. I didn’t bother with the pretext of going to the store. About an hour into that, my sinuses started itching again, my nose started running, and I started really feeling ill again. I eyed the small pack of Kleenex in the console, half gone already. Time to head home. I got home grinning from ear to ear, feeling content, and also feeling tired, ill, and ready to go back to bed.

A point in time between day and night.

I pretty much slept the rest of the day and night, waking now and then only long enough to have some soup, or tea, or re-up on symptom relieving over-the-counter nostrums and use the bathroom. So it went for the rest of the day, all of the night, and until some short time before full daylight this morning. Aside from some volunteer time on Friday, and buying the car, this entire weekend has been blown by being sick. I am, on the other hand, also exceedingly well-rested. lol

I’m sipping my coffee this morning, still feeling a bit fussy, head still pretty stuffy, but pleased that it hasn’t seemed to move into my chest (yet), which is a good thing. My coffee tastes delicious. It’s iced and also seems very refreshing. This seems, to me, to be a clear sign of recovery. I enjoy the moment, and the flavor, and also notice the colossal pile of used tissues, on the floor next to my desk, where I’ve either missed the waste basket or more likely, from the shape of the pile, and its vastness, I simple filled the basket and continued tossing tissue that direction. lol I am mildly embarrassed at the awareness that there are likely piles just like this one next to every over-filled waste basket in each room I’ve occupied this weekend, that the ennui of illness caused me to overlook and ignore. Maybe I have it in me today to tidy up a bit? (I think I might; and clearly I am well enough to notice the untidiness at this point!)

I begin to form a plan, an approach, something gently constructive to do with what is left of the weekend. I remind myself I am still sick, and won’t finish a long list – so I make a short one. The things that will bug me most to come home to, tomorrow: do the dishes, take out the trash, water the garden… I think about adding more, and decide to just stop there. Do those three things, gently. If I’ve got more in me after that, well, it’ll be obvious enough what else needs to be done. 🙂 No need to force myself through a busy day needlessly, it’s still the weekend.

I finish my coffee. Roll out my yoga mat. I begin again.

 

Well shit. I begin the day with fairly grand plans for the weekend, excited about it, too. Ready for it. Yearning for it. Eager to be done with a difficult work week and eager to dive into anything at all that isn’t work. Hell, even the challenge of making a definite departure at a specific time went quite smoothly, in spite of the follow-up call I took on the drive; works questions that were somehow still not resolved… in spite of a definite sense that the issues were satisfactorily settled all around. lol Done. I am done with the work week. So done. It’ll be there for me Monday. lol

The sky seemed a homogeneous nondescript neutral gray. Not quite raining, obviously had at some point… or… maybe? Surfaces appear wet or at least somewhat damp and wet looking. Unappealing weather, not bad, not good – not inspiring. I was feeling very much that I wanted part of my weekend experience to be one of inspiration. Not feeling it. Adventure! Not feeling that either. Stillness? Contentment? Mild amusement? C’mon… what the hell, all that build up toward a great weekend and…

…I have this headache, just on the left side of my head, where something or other has been troubling me for nearly two years now, still don’t know with any certainty quite what. My acid reflux has acted up, quite probably due to unavoidable, and wholly pointless, work stress. My arthritis has flared up as temperatures drop, and I am spending my days right at the edge of what is endurable without strong Rx pain relief day-to-day. It’s hard. I do want to “just have some fun”… but…

My body seems to “get it” before my consciousness really does; I need to get some rest, take some ease, just relax. Get some real sleep. Recover a bit. Recharge – legitimately rebuild lost reserves. Not really “a party opportunity”. I adjust my thinking as the miles slip past. I review a mental to do list – what gets done, what gets postponed – what matters most? It’s not just about this moment right here, now, in spite of it also always being about this moment, right here, now, in some slightly other way – like it or not, it is also important to consider what meets my longer term needs over time. I overlook that detail, if I do, to my future detriment. I stop arguing with myself about it.

I drive, I think, I yearn for… something.

Tomorrow I begin again.

I’m sitting here, awake early, watching the slow lightening of daybreak becoming a new day, stormy skies overhead, the sounds of traffic muffled and distant. I was sitting here thinking something or other… and like a jigsaw puzzle piece which has an obvious placement, without searching for it in this moment, I recognize that the verbal form (figure of speech?) to say that something is or is not “supposed to…” is an indicator of an assumption being made. Damn that is so entirely obvious. I mean, by definition, I think I “knew that”…only… now I also “get it”. Well… An improved understanding on any terms is nonetheless an improved understanding. Maybe I also actually already understood that fairly deeply… and only this morning experienced the ‘a-ha!’ moment of “getting it” – detached from the actual experience of making the connection at some other point? Perhaps the feeling is simply a feeling, like so many sensory or emotional experiences, and potentially prone to error?  I don’t know how all the variables of learning, understanding, reasoning, and the sensations of experience epiphanies actually work, and admittedly, I am also aware that my “novelty recognition circuitry” is pretty impaired. 🙂

I do think, in this moment, that I now understand more easily and with a greater sense of clarity that assumptions don’t work (than I had previously), and the understanding is based on also understanding that using the phrasing “supposed to” straight up shouts that one or more assumptions that do not align to reality are being made. It’s a helpful thing to be aware of in conversation.

It’s not the first time I’ve been slow to catch on to something, although quite commonly it’s something humorous that I’m not getting, specifically. There are any number of little quirks and oddities of character that result from brain injuries. Like Witzelsucht or “Gourmand Syndrome“. It often gets me wondering how many “eccentric” or “quirky” people historically actually had some sort of brain trauma? We have barely scratched the surface of what there is to know about the brain… and… we’re using the brain itself to do the work of learning more. I wonder if “conflict of interest” ever comes up… I mean… consciousness itself may have a stake in how much we understand. And then, too, if everyone – or approximately almost everyone – has some sort of brain trauma, over time, what is “normal”? Who decides that? Why do they get to decide for everyone else?

A stop along memory lane, Cafe Schenk, Pfersee.

A stop along memory lane, Cafe Schenk, Pfersee.

I continue to sip my coffee quite contentedly. It’s a Monday with a couple appointments, and some hang out time with my traveling partner at day’s end. I don’t have much on my mind, aside from my health, and that mostly because I am over 50, and didn’t do a great job of taking care of my health when I was much younger, rather than due to diagnosed illness. (You! There are on the couch, 20-something me, you do not need that additional tasty slice of torte, and you’d do well to try to get some damned sleep. Please?? And please leave out some reminders for 30-something me to get off her ass and get some exercise! It’s all going to matter so much, later.) Pretty routine stuff for now; I’d do well to lose a few pounds, and to get into better shape. Physical therapy and keeping an eye on calories and nutrition, walking more (more than that), and getting enough rest are a good starting point. So many damned verbs.

It's a journey.

It’s a journey.

The challenges of the past few days seem less threatening in the cool morning air, with the security of fresh hot coffee warming my hands. How much of my experience is illusions built on emotions, sensations, and assumptions? How much of that can I replace with observation, mindful acceptance, and non-judgmental awareness? Questions for a Monday. Today is a good day to be the change I wish to see in the world – I say it often; this morning I hear the words, and listen to the meaning. There are still verbs involved. I know that my results may vary. I’m okay right now – I can begin again, any time. 🙂

Sometimes building a life feels a little bit like a fancy arrangement of dominoes or jenga; at some point my choices may reveal themselves to have been poor choices, much later, in some unexpected way, sending the pieces to follow crashing down, one after the other. Choices matter. Each day that I do my best, practice the practices that support my physical and emotional wellness, comfortably handle the details of adult life that require my attention, I build a better future for myself – one resting on a firm foundation. I’m still human. Sometimes I can see a ‘misplaced domino’, and the action needed to adjust or correct for circumstances is obvious – it’s just more verbs. (I wish that implied some assurance of ease, but it does not.) Yes, there are pretty nearly always verbs involved – and the choice to use them. To be. To do. Neither are passive processes.

I need to put the AC in a window. The summer heat nailed me to the floor two days in a row with the afternoon heat. Both days I knew it would be that hot. Both days I made choices to hang out with my traveling partner, and planned around the heat of the day to make traveling easiest – and postponing installing the AC for the year. Priorities in the moment were definitely about love, rather than physical comfort. lol 🙂 Still a mammal. Still a primate. Still a human being in love. The AC can wait… it doesn’t give me hugs, kisses, tenderness – or laugh at my terrible jokes. 😀 Still…comfort would be nice, too.

It’ll be another hot day today, not quite as hot, but hot – and the AC would be helpful. Today is a good day for some different, practical verbs. Love will likely appreciate being comfortable here at my place, too. 🙂

I am sipping my coffee and listening to the rain fall. The irregular ‘ping!’ of rain drops on an overturned watering can at the edge of the community garden woke me, sometime shortly before 7 am. I woke slowly and gently, and considering sleeping more; it was a difficult night, interrupted at intervals by nausea or diarrhea. It was not the best night of sleep I’ve had this year. I got the rest I needed. That’s enough to start the day on. I get up, shower, make coffee.

The rain falls steadily. It rained once or twice yesterday, too. I note that I’d have been camping in the rain, which, once I get over the delight of the sounds of rain on a tent, isn’t that much fun for me. It’s hell on my arthritis, too. So I’m over any disappointment that had lingered about not camping. I’ve spent the time in the studio, on new work, and enjoyed a daring visit by brave friends from afar bearing soup, who felt the risk of getting sick was outweighed by the opportunity to catch up. Mostly, I’ve been napping, and sitting around in fuzzy slippers and yoga pants, undertaking to do as little as possible and rest as much as I can. It has still felt like non-stop effort. I’m tired. Sick. And tired.  lol

Today? I’ll spend the day resting, reading, bird watching from the patio window, sipping tea and taking care of this fragile vessel. That’s enough*.

There is a whole world just outside my window...

There is a whole world just outside my window…

*I may end up in the studio at some point; I did yesterday. 🙂 It’s hard to resist when it’s right here, ready, and I’ve both the time, and the inspiration. 😀 I can always nap later…