Monday, August 13, 2012

Even better than what the doctor ordered

When I last wrote, I was a big ol' mess.  I felt lousy after that training session-gone-kaplooey.  And then it got worse -- my back went out, and when my back goes out it doesn't tiptoe meekly out, but rather slams the door so that dishes fall off shelves, windows shatter, and birds' nests fall from trees.  My back knows how to make an exit.

In a nutshell, I saw some doctors.  One gave me something to make me care less about the pain; the other prescribed yoga & physical therapy.  What neither prescribed but I took on nonetheless was a hiatus.  The most walking I've done is around a few blocks... with my exuberant 60-pound tripod of a puppy, so I guess there might have been some exercise involved.  But that's beside the point.

During my Exercise Exile, I had to fill my time to distract myself from Progress Being Lost. 
  • I went to the movies with my kids
  • I walked half a mile to a restaurant because its actual location didn't match precisely with what I imagined its location to be
  • I ate a slice of cheap bread with salami, popcorn with butter, and even 1/2 a can of diet soda (what IS that stuff?)
And guess what?  I started to feel better.  Not better in my back (it holds a grudge), but better about life. 

That (and the blessed relieved from a hotly changed climate) got me interested in trying some new healthy recipes (Does strawberry banana cream pie count? I made the custard myself!), which gave me to optimism that accompanies creativity.  My sewing machine is looking less like a monster, and scrapbooking supplies are looking shiny & new again.

During this time of actually caring for myself, I found that my appetite dwindled.  How's that for a nice side effect?

Before I got on the scale this morning I thought "It's about time to buy a new scale.  We've had this one forever."  It must have heard me because the number it displayed was enough to make me smile, confirming that caring for myself is good. 

One of the ways I care for myself is exercise.  But exercise isn't my goal.  Love and joy are my goals, and it's time I keep and cultivate that attitude, even in the challenge of jogging at my weight.

My new back doctor is not a fan of pharmaceutical medications.  Instead he focuses on health, on managing our muscles.  I'm really excited to have someone in my corner who brings that optimism -- that I CAN manage my muscles. 

I don't know how to end this rambling today.  I'm just happy and optimistic for the first time in a long time, and all it took to get here was going through some excruciating pain.