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Sunday, January 19, 2014

Where Have You Been, Oh Queen?

I can't believe January is two thirds gone and I still haven't gotten resolutions written or my house clean or any knitting done or even anything creative started. It's as if Mercury went into retrograde the moment I put the last box of Christmas ornaments up in the attic. (It didn't - and doesn't till Feb. 6, btw - so there's that to look forward too as well) TheQueen is decidedly sluggish and inclined to feel blue and sorry for herself.

Mind now - I like down time. I actually look forward to January as a time to indulge in sit-down, indoor pleasures. I just haven't sat down, indulged in pleasure or even been able to think of any pleasures in which to indulge. I am thinking it's reaction to a bunch of blue inducing stressors that washed over me in December. Things like Heart Attacks and Losing my Weight Watcher meeting.

Oh yes. And there has also been pain. This is something I didn't talk about as it seeped into my world - certainly not to BD with his heart attack or my children who were only here for a short visit. I didn't want to trouble them. I wasn't even sure this was real pain and not just some selfish reaction to being around someone who was really sick. I secretly worry that my sisters are right and I am a selfish pig who thinks it's all about MeMeMeMeMe.  I didn't want to talk to the doctor if I wasn't really in pain. I didn't want him to know just what a hypochondriac I really am. No doubt about it - I am really scared of sickness and if I see it in one place I can see it lurking outside every window.

But the truth is in December I was in pain. Lots of pain. Unable to sleep pain. Sick to my stomach pain. Familiar shoulder pain that, off and on, over the course of almost a decade, several doctors and I have tried to find a solution to. We've looked at heart ... because of shooting pain down my left arm. We've looked at spine, especially neck, because of the tingling and faint numbness in my left hand. We've concentrated mostly on the neck and we just haven't found anything concrete.

I finally did make a doctor's appointment and immediately began to feel better - which just made me more sure that I would get that dread diagnosis - the one every woman hears far too often: "STRESS"  Well duh. Sure. I was under stress. Who isn't? I was also in pain.

Fortunately, my doctor took me seriously. He's an O.D. rather than an M.D. and he manipulated my arm and shoulder till tears sprang into my eyes. And he prescribed physical therapy  for my rotator cuff.

Happily I'm a good candidate for exercise treatments since I actually love exercise.  And in just over a week I'm feeling so much better I'm almost giddy.  I told the therapist on Tuesday that one of the exercises he gave me felt so good I could do it the rest of my life.

"That's exactly what I expect you to do" he told me with a twinkle in his eye.

And so - perhaps at least one New Year's Resolution is to do the PT exercises ... every day for the rest of my life.


So TheQueen has been down in the dumps but obviously, if she can talk about it, she's on the mend. And I am.

One thing that came out of the Heart Attack was the decision to put in central heat and we have been interviewing contractors and talking to people with all sorts of heating systems. We've about narrowed down our choice of heat source and are now only have to pick a contractor. We're waiting for their bids to come in. In more house improvements, it looks like we'll be getting a new front door. BD is going to look at one a carpenter found tomorrow. It's a complete unit with door, transom and side windows and it exactly fits our door opening. We've talked about this almost as long as we've talked about putting in central heat. It's rather thrilling to think they will both happen this year. There Will Be Photos.

As well, little tendrils of creativity have stirred beneath the soil of my discontent: A twinge of excitement when I looked at the two bags of knitting beneath my bedside table - A hum of energy coursing into my fingers when I looked at a new art book full of interesting exercises. I am reassured that life will return to TheCastle - the new and improved castle at that - and more, and less pitiful, posts will appear.


At Tara.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Goodbye Christmas, Hello New Year

It's always bitter sweet when we have to say goodbye to Christmas and this year is no different - I'm so glad it's gone and I so wish it was still up ahead. This particular Christmas was so strange because nothing turned out the way I planned it back in November. I took lots of time off this year so that I could do serious socializing and instead I've been home pretty much the whole time. Not that I mind being home - I rather love it - but it was just different - not as carefree as usual. And then - not what I'd been hoping to do either - dashing off to have lunch with J and gathering with the Richmond loved ones on Boxing Day. Ah well. So. It was different. It was still wonderful. And ... I'm still glad to pack it all up too.  

 But since this is my blog ... and as such is a bit of a diary - here are some highlights to remember - like visiting Mama with LD. I went back again on Monday too and Sister and I had a lovely time looking at an old scrap book full of newspaper clippings about Mama's Wonderful Daughters.
Here is the new 4-some smiling on Christmas eve. PD is one of two great gifts of the season - now Mrs. Darling, as of December 20. Aren't we lucky?

 And here is my Big Darling, home from the hospital (YAY YAY YAY THANK YOU, GOD) and hinting about opening presents - which were plentiful this year. Santa was particularly generous. Even Mrs. Santa had a gift or two.
The Little Darlings added so much to the festive feeling and yet were able to get off alone at least a little bit - after all - this sudden early visit was biting into their honeymoon.
 There was lots of rain on the weekend but it cleared up enough to get in beautiful hikes with my two labradors - dang - I thought Callie was in this picture - but she's such a speed demon it's hard to catch her with the camera unless she's up on the couch. Juno, otoh, is always ready to strike a pose. She was 40 lbs on Christmas Day - 5 months and 40 lbs! Whew.
The sun went down into a clear horizon on the last day of 2013 - not anything to create a vivid sunset but one that looks like we'll have smooth sailing in 2014. At least - that's MY plan and I'm stickin' to it.

And now - here we are - on the far side of Christmas and even well into next year. There's no more holiday left - just the sweet memories - the little disappointments - the big scare - and the enormous monumental gargantuan mountain of thankfulness that I'm here with BD and we ain't goin' nowhere.

When the werk of putting Christmas back in the attic was done I did take my annual bubble-bath, then fingered the pages of last year's journal and plotted out my new year's resolutions. I'll be back with a post about them tomorrow - at Tara.