Friday, June 14, 2013

Putting my back into (or is that out of?) it.


I am finally succumbing to the inevitable. For months I have avoided trying to pass my woes and misery onto this blog. I have left my moaning and groaning to the luxury of my friends on Facebook -- I  mean, isn't that what Facebook is for?

Yet, it seems unfair that I have only let a select group of my acquaintances into my lament full life. Admittedly some of my Facebook friends also subscribe to this blog, so hey, they get this twice. Aren't you a lucky bunch? Happy pills and alcohol will be handed out to this lucky band of people. It's the least I can do and in the scheme of things and it's cheaper than your cumulative  therapy bills -- just sign the waiver posted at the bottom absolving responsibility to well... I'll leave that up to you. Just post photos for the rest of us ;)

So, you may ask, why is there a distinct lack of posting on this site in the last few months? Fine, I have just moved country -in fact a whole ocean and continent away- and that is usually a good enough reason. Yet, international moves for us, are just an annoying feature of our lives. Like the common bout of flu, except we get to clear out our closets and drink all of the half opened bottles of liquor left over from Christmas.

Nope, the main reason of late, is that I have been broken. Quite distinctly (but figuratively) buggered.

It is a truth universally accepted, that a lower middle-class British family with some limited savings must be in wont of a Victorian cottage.  It's our goal to buy a quirky, cold and frankly bizarrely built house with its accompanying hotchpotch garden.

However, in our race to buy a 'quirky, cold and frankly bizarre house', we seem to forget that these houses have usually been standing in the same place for well over one-hundred years. They have ne'er moved an inch, they have not been defeated. Through storms, wars and the industrial revolution, these houses have been a fixed point in time -- like Captain Jack, except well... Less cute and more 'brickier'. (That's my Doctor Who reference done; let's cross that off the list).

If the might of nature and various examples of European artillery didn't make a dent, why do we believe that a weedy and unfit, small and skinny, mother with a hammer-drill will succeed in making a dent? Delusion. A great failing.

Armed with my newly purchased hammer-drill -who I named 'Bernard'- I set to work. Just some brackets here, a little shelf there. Oh, a nice picture hook just over there and let's fix a wardrobe just over the... Actually, lets not. In fact, please pass me some painkillers and a chair.

In mid-February, I developed some twinges and aches. Annoying and uncomfortable, but I am no spring chicken and all old hens get the odd crick. Another couple of weeks and those twinges become numbness, and then the pee'ing started. Oh lordie, could I pee. My life began to revolve around the nearest bathroom. Could I make the walk to and from school without the bathroom? Probably. Make a thirty minute car trip? Possibly. Do the food shop and pay at the checkout? Doubtful. I have so much junk in my house, as I have rushed into a store to use their dubious bathroom facilities, but then felt so guilty I had to buy something. Anyone want a big, blue, jewelled door handle? No, neither do I, but it was the cheapest thing I could find in the local hardware store.

Another two weeks in and the worst happened. In the local supermarket cafe. Just as I was reaching for a fruit bun. I started the line-up normal enough. By the time I came to pay, I looked like the stand-in for Quasimodo in a village production of 'The Hunchback of Notre-Dame'.

Three days of prescription medication and then, (as they didn't work) half a bottle of wine, (which did), I was finally able to move.

That was the middle of March and now three months on, I am still broken. Although in the manner of an old house. I have now gone from glaringly and newly broken, to the point where the cob-webs and dirt have covered up the worst of it.

After a month of physiotherapy, I still get numbness and twinges. The leg-pain has died down and the peeing is beginning to rectify itself. (It's ten-thirty in the morning and I have only been once -- Woohoo!) Yet, I am far from fixed and I have had enough now.

I am sick of being broken. I am tired of not being able to do the simplest things without painful consequences. I hate having to resort to alcohol or painkillers by six o'clock in the evening. The weather is improving and I want to run in my funky shirts, but I am having to limit myself to the occasional walk and slow jogging; it's frustrating. I am not the most house-proud of people, but enough my limit is being tested now. Even I draw the line to feet sticking to the kitchen floor.

Here, I am in my local coffee-shop -my haven against the horror of my unkempt house- contemplating my next move. I have another round of physiotherapy in about an hour and I know where this is leading. I know what his next move will be and it's one I have been dragging my heels against. I have a monthly review at my family Doctor next Tuesday, and I know I will be referred to a consultant. I will be scanned and prodded and poked. I have avoided this because I am terrified that once I end up on the consultants list, I will end up on the surgeon's list.

My Mother had so many back problems as I was growing up. She had back surgery and it never really worked. My Mother was in pain pretty much till she passed away. I have been working hard never to be in the same position, and yet, here I am.

I am scared. However, fear is something I can control. It's just our bodies reaction to not knowing what is coming. That's life and if we planned our whole future then we would never do anything. Christopher Columbus didn't know he wouldn't fall off the edge of the world when he headed West. Look, what awaited him. Potatoes. I mean, the advances of our civilisation due to potatoes. Fish is just fish and boring until you add Chips to them, (or custard -- reference number two. I am on fire today). Oh, I suppose his trip also led to the development of America and the digital watch, but, look... Potatoes!!

I need to embrace the fear and reverse it. Raef? Sounds like Christopher Columbus's Cabin boy. Umm, maybe not. Perhaps I just need to remember Potatoes instead.


1 comment:

  1. Hammer drills are cool, but you need an impact driver as well. Why? Just cause. You're not a man, but your man-card could be riding on this.

    I had to laugh at your reference to emptying the Christmas liquor supplies. I moved last year, and in the final months had to walk the fine line between wasting perfectly good alcohol, and descending into full blown alcoholism. I'm Scottish-Canadian, so I tilted towards waste-avoidance as the more important sin to avoid.

    I'm sorry to hear that you're 'broken' and hope you figure out what's up soon.

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