Life on The Mountain

The Disconnection

There is clearly a disconnection deep in my brain between what my brain thinks I ought to be able to do, and what I can really do without dire consequences. You would think that by this point in life, after how many years of illness? 12 officially, I guess, that I would have it clearly mapped out. And in some regards, I do.

But then there are times when something clearly has to be done, like, say, for example, putting chains on the X-Terra & attempting to get it out of the driveway, and my brain sees the priority as getting the car out, period.

But crawling around in the snow with it’s delightful layer of ice underneath, digging around & crawling under the car, straining to reach connectors & get them to click, that is quite clearly out of my physical reach anymore. And yet. It needed to be done, Rhiannon was helping put had never put them on before, and it took both our combined efforts to succeed in just getting the bloody things on. The car got out of it’s one stuck position, moved hopefully a little way up the hill, and stopped.

By that time, we’d both had enough. The impossibility of getting the car all the way up the driveway had become more clear in our minds. The snow, especially in the deep ruts, was (and is) just too damn deep. We’d both done a little shoveling, Rhiannon more than I, but she was really hurting from the previous two days shoveling heavy wet snow. To her credit, she did point out everytime I picked up the shovel “Mom, you CAN’T do that.”

But somewhere deep in my mind is this disconnect, between what I used to be able to do & therefore, my mind says, should still be able to do, and what I can really do without paying a heavy, painful, price. Maybe it’s pride, I don’t know. I used to be able to haul around 40# hay bales, and 50# bags of animal feed, dig my own fence post holes, and do damn well anything I wanted to. Back then, it was definitely a matter of pride. I had to be able to do a man’s work as a single-mom farmer-shepherdess. For many years there was no option. And my body, for the most part, was able to toughen up & handle it.

But it clearly can’t anymore, and even a short period of exertion (I doubt we were at it more than an hour) leads to the most excruciating level of pain & fatigue. My back is so tightly in spasm you could use it as a table, albeit a lumpy one. My knee is not at all happy, though it’s hard to say how much of that is weather-related and how much is due to crawling around in the snow & ice (I did have my brace on). Then there’s the migraine, partially from the inflammed trigger points in my shoulders & neck, partially from hormonal swings.

In other words, I’m beyond incapacitated. Loading up with pain meds & anti-inflammatories & muscle relaxers, I hope to pass into a semi-coma state and sleep, as that’s the only relief there is.

And the car is still stuck half-way (maybe more like a third of the way) up the driveway, with sleet & freezing rain on the way. Currently the forecast calls for 40 degrees & rain on Wednesday. It had better be rain, to pack the snow down enough I can get out, or we might be stuck here until the spring thaw sets in.

I really, really should have moved the car when I had the chance, but the forecast was only for 4-6″ of snow, and that I could have gotten out of. This blog post is here to remind me next week, next month, and next winter: swallow your pride & move the damn car!

And work on that disconnection!

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