About the only thing that motivates me these days is my girl, JennyPenny.  I’m lucky to have her.  Otherwise I’d probably just sit here and rot.  But she has to be fed twice a day, watered, let out about every hour or two and get her medicine twice a day.  Which means I have to get off my duff, if only to transfer from bed to wheelchair, and move myself around.  Yes, that’s right.  Bed! Embarrassing as it is, I spend most of my day on my bed.  Reclining, with legs stretched out, back supported by pillows.


And that has got to change.  The longer I stay here in my bedroom, the more strength I lose and the weaker I get.  I notice my legs aren’t as sturdy as they used to be.  I’m losing muscle.  Just a small amount of exercise leaves me weak and breathless.  If I stand longer than a few minutes, my blood pressure goes up too high.  Then I feel light headed and faint.  It’s a viscous circle.   The longer I stay on my bed, the worse I feel and the worse I feel, the more I want to operate from my bedhome.


What’s operating most in this viscous circle is fear.  The physical problems, along with the consequences of not pushing myself, are real.  And scary.


I know I could do better.  I’ve got to just DO it!  Start slow and build up.  I don’t know what I can regain of what I’ve lost, but something, I’m sure.  Yesterday I walked back and forth in the sun room about four or five times holding onto a walker and felt no ill effects.  I’ve got to do this every day.  And I’ve got to move out of my bedroom into the sunroom.


sunroom (Photo credit: meglet127)


It’s bright and pleasant there, with a view of the yard, my neighbors, and vehicles going down Luster.   There’s a world out there I don’t want to lose contact with.


My love for the bedroom started when I was a small child and sick.  I spent much time in bed reading, writing, dreaming.  Even when I wasn’t sick, I could hide out in my room from my brothers, who loved to tease me.  I was the only girl in the family until after I graduated from high school.   After I had Rheumatic Fever and a mitral valve prolapse, Mother became very protective of me.  She wouldn’t let me do heavy chores or go for long walks.  Once, in high school, when my classmates went on a hike, I sat in the back of a pickup which was transporting the picnic supplies to our destination.  The message was: I was different from everyone else, weaker, not quite up to snuff.  It’s a concept I’ve had to fight all my life and am still having problems with in my old age.


But now, I have to find the strength and courage to change my concept of myself and to be more active, to live a normal life.


“Smile, though your heart is breaking…”

The day is winding down.  I’ve been going through old mail all day–statement after statement, receipt after receipt, letter after letter, advertisements, offers, magazines, catalogs, notebooks–2010, 2011, 2012.  All stuffed in boxes and plastic bags.  Mounds of paper staring at me, accusing, demonstrating the state of my mind–disorganized important, to me,  matter embedded in minutia.

Among the papers, I found an old Nat King Cole DVD.  Tonight, having worn myself out, I sit and listen to the old songs–The Very Thought of You, Mona Lisa, This Can’t Be Love, Smile.

The music takes me back, back to simpler times, when the only papers I had to deal with were the ones I wrote my homework on, my diary, poems, letters to Forrest, then my boyfriend (later my husband) and his to me.  It was during WW II.

We sang those songs during intermission at the movies–always a double feature, cartoons and live, very graphic news of the war.  No sugar-coating.  After the first feature ended, and the news, the lights went on, everyone stood and sang the songs as someone played an organ.  Songs mostly related to war.  The words moved across the screen and into our hearts as we joined our voices in pride and sorrow.   The news was filled with scenes of skies filled with war planes and parachuting soldiers, closeups of soldiers shooting at planes, some going down in smoke, piles of dead bodies, Americans, Japanese, Germans.

The movies were mostly  romantic war stories–brave soldiers, their adoring an understanding women.  There were always tears.  I was in my teens and very impressionable.

I’ve wondered what made me like I am.  Not until today, listening to Nat King Cole, have I made a connection between the war years and much of my personality.  I know that’s simplifying it, but I do now see a real connection.   I want to start exploring that connection, but for now, I just want to say, I’m quite a romantic.  My ideas about life have been unrealistic much of the time.  Consequently, I’ve been disappointed and disappointing.  I’ve smiled a lot, “though my heart was breaking.”

And not for a minute do I believe I’m unique.  How many of us do that?  Why do we?  And should we?  It’s a good thing to be positive.  But at the expense of being who we are, being able to express our sadness, at the expense of being emotionally isolated?  I want to bring these thoughts back, to be explored another day.  But, tonight, I’m tired.  I’ll take my sadness to bed.