Skip to main content

Out on the line.

 I have been so lucky in so many ways. I have only experienced tiny specks of physical and emotional pain in my life.

Luckily that pain has been either episodic or limited and I have been able to manage it with drugs, or crying or writing or wine or chips....or something.

This summer, a decade of holding my head the wrong way, typing, scrolling, stressing and driving all ganged up on my neck and said...we are holding you hostage until you address this.  However, when it first started, the pain didn't explain it just attacked. And attacked. No position relieved it. No drug touched it. It went on and on. I could not sleep. I could not hold a book or type. I drove with difficulty. Swimming in the ocean gave me enough pleasure that I temporarily forgot it.  I couldn't drink to forget it though or massage it enough. It just kept going.  

I tackled the pain like I tackle everything, blindly and in a chaotically forceful way. This pain refused to be massaged away. It turns out this pain needed to be heard. Line by line by tedious line. The first thing that indicated I had a problem was my arm. It throbbed sharply, the nerves jabbed me in my dreams. My first lesson about pain delivered in this brutal way is that it had been created much like a ball of yarn gets tangled, through carelessness.  As I was forced to stop and unravel that led me to understand it had nothing to do with my arm, but my neck.  And it had nothing to do with my neck, but how I cared for myself in the past years.  Stop, it patiently and (longwindedly I might add) orated. Stop. Hold yourself. Pay attention. Your finger is connected to your neck, your shoulder and your elbow are intertwined. Your heart and lungs have something to tell you. Come down on your knees, beg us to explain it all to you.

Gradually, oh so gradually, the yarn's knots are getting loosened and the knitting, the thinking and the dreaming (and typing and driving) begin again.


Popular posts from this blog

Do not google your emotions.

 Have you ever felt compelled to google mystery symptoms in the middle of the night? I have.  I know I am not alone.  What is this rash? Is this bug a bed bug?  Does this fever mean I am dying or just slightly ill? These questions loom large in the dark.  We are urged not to do this, that instead, we should ask a health professional (or accost one at a social event). "Nice to meet you, how are you with moles? Have I got one for you!" This is how I have been feeling about emotions lately.  Due to global reasons I do not need to mention, I have spent a lot of time apart from others. I still talk to my friends and family every day, but it is rare right now that we are actually in the same room doing stuff together.  I cling to those fleeting moments of closeness like no one's business and get nourished by them long after we have to go back to our respective cubby holes, but the constraints on those times are real. As a result, I am starting to realize that even emotions are

Surface tension

  My vocabulary was the first to go.  Simple words would escape me and I would end up searching around for them like I do for my glasses in the dark. I would come back with inadequate replacements.  I blamed zoom, I blamed stress.  What I never really considered was that maybe I was searching for words when there were none.   Next came the conversation.  It dried up.  I used to love winding endless discussions like a river with many tributaries, some mountain fed, some coming from deep within the forest.  On really exciting days, the rain fell and made the river overflow. However, the river bed's water evaporated. I think about conversations now fondly like I do of childhood pastimes.  I cannot seem to reach for anything more substantial than what I am eating. or seeing on the internet or of course the weather.  I am boring myself. These past several months have felt a bit like musical chairs. The music stopped and I was without a chair.   I knew there was something really differen

1 passenger

 It started last year. I did not think about it too much beforehand, however, I found myself on a solo overnight trip to my friend's beautiful place in Cape John. It was the right kind of trip in every way.  Being alone had so many great benefits. I pleased myself exclusively.  I went shopping in a second hand clothing store. I went swimming when I felt hot. I sat and stared at swaying grasses for as long I needed to. I ate cheese and crackers and the only time I cooked anything it was to make coffee. This year, I had a night by myself in a cute little trailer by a very still and shallow lake. I forgot that I had promised myself the year before to always have a vacation day/night by myself each year. I won't forget again.