My blog is often my creative outlet, a way of making sense of the world. Taking an issue, wrestling with the details, framing it a certain way, putting a personal stamp on it. It is also stress relief. I talk through some of the things that are bothering me, a monologue with myself that I share publicly. Sometimes they provoke reactions, likes on FB or a comment or two. Many times they don’t. While I would love to have thousands of people hanging on my every written word, I write most of the time for me. A diary of sorts. Maybe a legacy that my son will some day read, wondering, “What did Dad think about that?”.
Yet because I write for me, sometimes as potentially the only one who will read the post, I also cannot hide in sophistry or metaphor. I believe strongly in as much transparency in relationships as they can handle, sometimes more than is comfortable, and that transparency has to apply to my relationship with myself. But even though it is sometimes hard, I know that my writing is good for me. An outlet of release.
Which is why I am posting something when I really don’t feel like posting or doing anything. I want to curl up in a ball and shut out the world. If it wasn’t for COVID, I’d probably want to go somewhere for a week, turn off my phone, and just shut down. To simply “be”, find my centre, and let my body and mind recharge. A form of CTRL-ALT-DELETE for my internal software and external hardware.
Except life doesn’t work like that, of course. You can’t run away from problems, and if they’re mental noise, they end up going anywhere you go too. I’ve often wondered if I’d be better off having an interest in alcohol occasionally. Something to just overwhelm the brain and shut it off for awhile. I tend to mute it through distraction instead, binge-watching something or a project. But I’m having trouble filtering the noise right now.
A good portion of it is COVID, of course. I feel like I want to go to a mall and just walk around. No shopping, no interactions with anyone, just go and walk around. Do something somewhat normal. I won’t, we are still a high-risk household, after all.
Some of it is the winter. I do tend to get squirrelly in February, although I’m barely noticing other than having to clear snow off the car. I barely even know it is winter or anything outside of the pod.
But my issues with my leg are getting to me. I can wrap my head around the compression socks, maybe not well, maybe not right away, but it’s noise. I did my fitting today for some custom socks, yay, and it’s not a big deal in the long run. Same shit, different day. Whatever.
I was able to wrap my head around the trips to wound care, constant wrapping, the extra hassles with showering, etc. Mostly because I could see a light at the end of the tunnel. My leg was improving, the wound was healing, the compression was helping.
And then last week blew that to hell in a handbasket.
My wound started to get angry and red again, I had multiple appointments by phone with my doctor to go back on the antibiotic horse pills for another 14d. I also had multiple “rush” appointments with the wound care people after I had to rip the compression off on Saturday and again today because the wound was starting to hurt like the Dickens. I think the bandage is somehow slipping under the compression over time, and it is “pulling” at the wound. My nurse thinks it is because I’m not keeping my legs elevated during the day, which while working at a desk for 8h isn’t a great combo.
So where does that leave me? Basically with a wound that is almost back to square one and the likelihood that my next stop is going to be an ER sometime. Who the f*** knows what they’ll actually do for me if I go, since I’m already receiving wound care and antibiotics. I suppose IV antibiotics is a possibility.
Yet when I look at that list, you know what I see?
It’s not that serious in the end. There are people out there with real serious health problems and I’m not talking about simply COVID. I’m talking about chronic pain conditions. Things they deal with and live with, and I can’t help but wonder.
If I’m this much of a basket case with a simple leg wound, what will I be like when I get to a point with REAL problems to live with?
That is what is frying my mental bacon. The weakness, the face of the future, my comfort and ability to handle mental stress and emotional turmoil but which seems to fail me completely when dealing with physical discomfort.
With a slightly serious segue, it is made me think about the MAID legislation that is going through. Medical Assistance In Dying. And it makes me wonder. Is that me in the future? Am I going to be THAT guy? The one who is in some discomfort, isn’t dying anytime soon, is relatively mentally competent (or at least as I ever was) but simply cannot endure the day to day that is misery?
I already live in fear of mental decline. For someone who has always lived in his mind, has always used his mind to separate himself apart from others in school or work, who defines himself by his mind, the thought of that mind not being “there” to continue to define myself is relatively terrifying. If my fear of snakes was put in comparison with fear of dementia, snakes would be about a 2 compared to a 12 for dementia. Even while knowing that ironically, I won’t know if it does decline.
On the other hand, I’m not in distress, I’m not in crisis. It’s a setback, I’ll bounce back. I’ll write, I’ll do Lego, I’ll do some stuff on my website design. But first I’m going to take a mental health day on Wednesday, as I didn’t feel like I’d really accomplish anything at work anyway.
Oh, and I’ll take out the garbage and recycling. I’ve already cleared snow twice today (Tuesday) so I’m hoping I won’t need to do that on Wednesday too, if I can help it. More coming on Thursday. Yay.
At least I was outside for awhile, right?
In the meantime, I blog late at night, throwing my words out into the abyss. A week ago I reached 1500 posts, and I didn’t even notice. I probably need to celebrate that milestone somehow, just not sure what it is yet.