My WFH has been automatically extended and Dr B continues to be in a high-risk category or two. That’s not going to stop. I mean, he’s not Merlin, so he’s not going to start getting younger! Given the COVID-19 status of eastern states at the moment – particularly Victoria; and if any of you are there, warmest wishes to you and hang in there, because we’re all in this together – further automatic extensions could just about see us through till Christmas. As silly as that sounds, the tinselly time isn’t as far away as we might think.
I thought I’d been doing quite well with WFH. I don’t swear too much about the technology, even on days of high frustration levels. I’m only occasionally tempted to scream at people during meetings (sometimes I do; with my mute button safely deployed). I might be tempted to drink during work hours, but I wait till knock-off time. I have not been exercising as much as I would have had I continued with office based work, because there’s a great deal more incidental exercise involved in simply getting to the office. Still, I have tried to factor in a daily stroll around the back yard, weather and my current state of health and/or exhaustion permitting.
But if I’ve been a bit quiet lately – and I know my blog has lulls when things are busy elsewhere; that’s just how Life is – it’s been simply because I couldn’t sit for long enough to write anything! My chronic back problems occasionally flare up big-time, and as predictable as they are, they’re also utterly unpredictable. I never know quite which bout is going to turn into something I can’t manage with over-the-counter medications.
This time, I ended up over at our local hospital emergency department for a few hours, being carefully assessed and bringing home a significant medication upgrade. Our old mate’s oft-repeated advice of “Keep taking the tablets” is the mantra of the moment. Also, as one staff member advised me in precisely these words, “Suck it up” – meaning forget about your dignity – “and get a walking frame.” Who, me? Yes, indeed, and what a difference it makes. I have named my walker Max, for what I think are obvious reasons (the Aunts agree, but the Bs are mystified). So, you know, have I now officially reached the ranks of the old farts? Perhaps, although I will never own the title like Dr B, because he is always going to be much older than I am (as he constantly reminds me).
I remind myself that one great-grandmother, who died at 56, was described in the coroner’s report as an “elderly woman”. You might say – and I’d agree – that nowadays we wouldn’t view that as particularly elderly. However, my own mantra of “Whatever works for you” is a good enough reason to be grateful to the frame for the assistance it provides during this acute flare-up. I will hang onto Max literally now, but also in the sense of retaining him so that, should I ever again need a walker – increasingly likely, for all sorts of reasons including the fact that I am also not Merlin – then I’ll have one neatly tucked away ready to use.
The housework suffers, because I simply cannot do anything that requires bending, stretching or lifting, or sitting or standing for any length of time. So, if the house is a little dustier than usual, here’s another mantra: “Don’t breathe too deeply!” And if the laundry is piling up (nicely illustrated as background to Max, I think), because nobody else can or will do it, I remind myself that it doesn’t eat anything and will still be there tomorrow.
May all your mantras provide motivation and reassurance, too, no matter your situation 😀